VEXED was born shortly before the COVID pandemic rocked the world and music industry. Although it has only been a few short, yet very long years, it’s weird for the band to hear people say they are a younger, newer band; they even feel a year younger because of all the time lost to the pandemic. Their first ever show was at UK Tech-Fest and was enjoying this year’s Tech-Fest at the time of interview, taking it all in in preparation for their slot the next day on the main stage.
“We still don’t feel like it’s that big,” shares vocalist Megan Targett. “We had to experience the whole thing at home. So it still feels like nobody really knows who we are. We’re very small and we still definitely feel that way. It’s mad. I remember being a very, very timid, very shy, very insecure, sort of front person for a long time and now I just don’t care anymore.”
Their debut album Culling Culture was initially delayed, but was still received to a chorus of praise and admiration. Among the behind-the-scenes magic was producer Eric De La Fuenta of Exist Immortal, who was tapped again for Negative Energy. They loved working with him again because he knows exactly what they want and isn’t afraid to be honest about what needs to be done.
“We wrote it so long ago and we spent so much time on it,” shares guitarist Jay Bacon. “Obviously, it was all that time we’re waiting for people to hear it, so now that people can finally hear it, it’s a big relief. It’s been reciprocated really well, the response has been really positive and we’re just happy people have been able to hear it now. Finally, after sitting on it for so long. We would have been playing like mad but obviously, because we had to experience the whole thing from our houses, it did put a little bit of a downer on it. We couldn’t fully promote it. Now, we can experience it properly. We can play the shows we’re supposed to play surrounding the release.”
When Culling Culture first came out, Targett’s grandfather, who had raised them, was diagnosed with a terminal illness and died within 3 months. The band was put on hold to be at home and take care of him, thinking it would be a few years, leading to a life-altering moment that needed to be processed. However, the right amount of time was taken and the event fueled the push that VEXED needed to break the barrier and become greater versions of themselves.
“After a while, we managed to sit down together and actually decide what we were going to write about,” explains Targett. “So, we wrote about what had happened and the processing of grief and trying to figure out what to do when you lose a parent and being dropped into the reality of being an adult on your own and figuring things out on your own.
“It was definitely a hard album to write, both mentally and physically,” adds Bacon “We put more attention into it than we have ever done with anything. We went through the entire album like a fine-tooth comb, to really make sure we captured the sound that we each had in mind and to explore all the different themes lyrically as in depth as we physically could.”
Photo courtesy of social media.