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Athens rock ‘n' roll band Hex Net is set to play at the Nelsonville Music Festival this weekend. The band recently underwent some lineup changes shortly after releasing the band's first studio album Future Holds.
Grungy guitars and vocals power the group’s sound, with influences drawn from classic rock and small town living.
Songwriter, guitarist and vocalist Seth Riddlebarger spoke with ACRN about the upcoming Nelsonville Music Festival and the reception of Future Holds.
ACRN: To start out, tell me a little bit more about yourself, Tim [Peacock], Nate [LaReau], Chris [Aubell] and your roles in the band?
Seth Riddlebarger: Nate’s actually not playing with us anymore, but I’m the songwriter. Tim and I have been playing together for about two years. Nate was the original drummer, actually. He was the drummer on the record. Chris has been playing drums for us for about six months, and we’ve had a couple different guys playing keys. Chris has been switching from drums and keys, and now we have another dude playing keys.
ACRN: So there’s been some lineup changes. Is that something you guys like to do to keep it interesting?
SR: I wouldn’t say that [laughs]. It’s kind of whoever’s available to play. I’d prefer to have a more solid lineup, but people have obligations like jobs and school and other bands that they’re playing in.
ACRN: You guys recently released an album. How’s the promotion and the reception of that been?
SR: We just put it out online, it’s been a couple of weeks. I’d say for the few weeks it’s been up the reception’s been good. We’re still working on the promotion. We’re gonna press it on vinyl, so we’re still finishing up with the artwork and all that. Yeah, still working on the promotion.
ACRN: You said you and Tim have been playing together for at least two years. Have you ever played at the Nelsonville Music Festival before?
SR: This is my third time playing at the Neslonville Music Festival. A band I used to play for that was called the Dragline Bros., played at Nelsonville a few years ago. I’ve played there ... this year will be the third time I’ve played there.
ACRN: Listening to some of your songs, I heard that grungy, sort of in-your-face blues rock music. How would you describe your music?
SR: I would describe [our music] as rock ‘n' roll. I don’t know if there’s only one kind of music that we play, so I’d call it rock ‘n roll.
ACRN: You said that you write most of the songs. Is there anyone who really influences you when you sit down and write those lyrics or that music?
SR: I’ve been playing in bands for about 15 years. I can’t really think of any bands or “a band” that really influences me. My main influence was wanting to be a songwriter and wanting to play in a band. There’s certain things that will influence me at times, like if I listen to something enough, local bands that I’ve played for. Really just wanting to get out there and play music. I don’t really know what to say as far as name-dropping.
ACRN: Everyone always wants to know, so is there a cool or interesting story behind the name Hex Net?
SR: It came off some old chicken wire [laughs].
ACRN: Okay, so what should fans expect? Why should they stay for your set at the Nelsonville Music Festival?
SR: [Laughs]. That’s a tough one.
ACRN: Maybe just to listen to the music? I read that you play pretty much all original music.
SR: Yeah, there’s that, we play a lot of our own stuff, and then we’re ... we’re a good band.
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