Hexadiode hails from the industrious city of Dayton, OH, the birthplace of aviation. As a duo blending electro-industrial sounds with an old-school EBM vibe, the team of Jonas Miseh and Tim Krug have spent their few short years of existence on the scene crafting a forward-thinking, albeit bleak sound. A hardware-only outfit, as their Bandcamp profile proudly professes, the sound is harsh, yet finessed, and over their previous two albums, the duo have tied it together, leading to their third and most recent release, Metaxy, Greek for “between.”
Released on Halloween, the twelve-track disc is a darkly entrancing offering, striking a fine balance between crushing, grungy heaviness and unsettling atmosphere. The opening track “Distraction” is a heavy-handed one, breaking down the door, rather than gently opening it and peeking its head in. “Impulse Matrix” has a distinct late 80s / early 90s electro-industrial feel to it, like early Nine Inch Nails or Ministry. “Markov Chain” continues the classic industrial vibes, with its stomping rhythms.
“Invariant” is a dark, atmospheric number that fits a lot of unease into two and a half minutes. That leads to “Brain in 3,” one of my personal favorite cuts from this disc. It’s grungy, staticky, and yet somehow so catchy with that synth riff that sticks with you for a bit. It is such a well put together track with an old-school sensibility about it. The march-like “6th Dialect” makes for a commanding interlude, with plenty of fuzz and crackle on the production to make for a delightfully drab sound.
“Parasitic Static” stands another choice track on the record, with its bouncing rhythms and synths underneath a layered vocal part and a remarkably simple drum riff. “Extreme Unction” sounds like it could be in a video game, something like Hotline Miami or something with a throwback flare to it. The title track has some lovely double kick patterns that will satisfy the more metal-oriented listener, and “13 of 12” closes out the main portion of the disc with another 90s-sounding track full of electronic bewps and a talk-growled vocal line.
Finishing out the release are two remixes, the first being a Guilt Trip recalculation of “Parasitic Static,” which adds some guitars to the latter portion, and a more metal-sounding snare. The Blush Response remix of “Brain in 3” makes an already harsh-sounding track even more so, and that’s nothing short of an accomplishment in my book.
Who knew that a band from the Buckeye State could make such a fine industrial / EBM record? Hexadiode has a versatile offering on their hands with Metaxy, and as far as I’m concerned, I could listen to more of this for days to come. No two tracks feel the same, even the remixed versions of the A-sides. It’s a fun release with plenty of things to like about it, and tracks like “Brain in 3” could use some airplay at any friendly neighborhood underground club night.
Metaxy is available in physical and digital formats through the artist’s Bandcamp page, as well as Amazon.