Almost Honest Premiere “Amish Hex”; The Hex of Penn’s Woods Due This Fall

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Almost Honest signed to Argonauta Records in July and at the time announced their first album for the label and third overall would be released this Fall. No exact date on it yet, but the title is The Hex of Penn’s Woods and the first single/video “Amish Hex” finds the New Cumberland, Pennsylvania-based outfit digging into their regional lore.

Southern Central PA — for those who didn’t grow up on the Eastern Seaboard of the US — and particularly Lancaster County, has been home to the religious community of the Amish for 300 years. The technology-averse sect — which has spread through Ohio, Indiana, Illinois, and more than 25 other states, even if Lancaster County retains the highest population: about 30,000 — has long been a subject for television and films, novels, that one Weird Al video and so on depicting life inside and around the Amish way of being, but generally one’s experience with them will be limited to a hello passing by or giving wide berth to a slower-moving horse-drawn carriage traveling on the side of the road. They are something of a local feature, and if you ever end up someplace that promises the likes of ‘Penn Dutch’ cooking, that’s a thing you want to eat.

Driving out through farm land, one will likewise see plenty of hex signs as a local feature. Usually circular, intricate patterns; you can buy them at tourist shops and take them home. Almost Honest‘s take in the clip for “Amish Hex” is somewhat different, as the band explains below. The Amish kid who gets bullied gets his in the end, which I suppose is the advantage of being able to turn into a badass wizard who can control lightning. Handy, to say the least. As the song plays out through its nodder riff and layered, melodic chorus — the abiding attitude shooting for and hitting “nothing too fancy” without sounding staid or like anything’s missing — the video sympathizes with the young boy being pushed around, and fairly enough so. Granted, the Amish aren’t known for being a forward-thinking bunch, but it’s not the kid’s fault he was born. Again, good thing he’s a wizard.

Amish Gandalf’s revenge plays out cathartically as the song retains a likewise humble vibe, and in that, Almost Honest feel true to their origins. They’re not from some big hotspot city or scene. They’re probably not touring for six weeks at a clip. But they’re a rock and roll band with a point of view and the songs to express it, and as the first audio leak from the follow-up to 2019’s Seiches and Sirens (review here), “Amish Hex” is encouraging in both its actual sound and in the storytelling. In the spirit of the thing, I’ll leave you to check it out on your own and see where you end up. For me, it’s very much about place in a way I’ll be curious to hear if the album develops.

A quote from the band and more from the PR wire follows.

Please enjoy:

Almost Honest, “Amish Hex” video premiere

Almost Honest on “Amish Hex”:

We have lived in and around Lancaster County all of our lives and have always been around the Amish. It is not uncommon to get stuck behind a horse and buggy on your way to work or see parking spaces specifically for them. This song is a story we wrote about an Amish child who gets picked on by people from the outside world. Then one day he finds a book called The Hex of Penn’s Woods. He uses this book to summon an Amish Wizard who will have his revenge on those who mocked him. The lyrics push forth powerful south central Pennsylvania imagery. It even includes a nod to one of my favorite desserts, the Shoofly Pie. It’s nice to be able to take people to our little corner of the world without having to book a plane ticket.

The Hex of Penn’s Woods
release date Fall 2023
Argonauta Records

Almost Honest lineup:
Shayne Reed – Guitar/Vocals
Quinten Spangler – Percussion/Vocals
David Kopp – Guitar/Vocals
Garrett Spangler – Bass

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One Response to “Almost Honest Premiere “Amish Hex”; The Hex of Penn’s Woods Due This Fall”

  1. […] band comments: “Big news! Our music video for »Amish Hex« is out now premiering on The Obelisk. This is our first new music In 4 years. »Amish Hex« will be streaming everywhere Tuesday […]

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