When UK-based modern metal outfit Vexed dropped their debut album, Culling Culture, earlier this year via Napalm Records, it’s fair to say the four-piece successfully marked their arrival on the scene with a supremely heavy, riff-loaded bang.
Among the many highlights from the riotous record – and trust us, there are many – is Fake, a blistering three-and-a-half minutes of palm-muted chugs, oversized open-string stabs and fierce overdriven bends.
In a playthrough recorded exclusively for Guitar World, the band’s eight-string-wielding riff mastermind Jay Bacon takes us up close and personal with his electrifying fretboard explorations, and offers up a blistering rendition of Vexed’s most recent hard-hitting single.
Bacon – who is celebrating his recent partnership with Jackson guitars – is wielding his Jackson Pro Series DK8, which he runs through a Line 6 Helix modeler for searing high-gain tones. The two extra strings certainly have their work cut out, playing host to a series of monstrous, drop-tuned punches, which precede a kaleidoscope of intricately crafted lead licks and gorgeously dissonant broken extended chords.
A tasty collection of whole-note-and-then-some string bends, mirroring the guttural lyrics of lead vocalist Megan Targett, shows off Bacon's precise note control and the band’s brilliant chemistry.
“This track was one of the easiest writes on the album,” Bacon recalled. “I mean, it pretty much just flowed out of us. I probably speak for most guitar players when I say the best riffs pop into your head at like 2am when you’re trying to sleep, as was the case with the first riff of the track.
“We knew this one was going to be dead heavy and I think we’ve done a fair job of capturing the sort of vibe we wanted,” he continued. “I usually write parts super-basic as a baseline and then develop them further if need be, but I didn’t feel the need to complicate this any more than it was originally.
“I think the simplicity of some of the sections is what helps it pack a punch. It’s a strong favorite of mine on the album. It’s definitely one of the most fun ones to play, so I can’t wait to see the response it gets live.”
Culling Culture is available now via Napalm Records.