Ethos pairs decades of musical expertise with passion for rap to introduce incredible new sound to the world
CLEVELAND, OH – If you look up the word “Ethos” in the dictionary, you’ll find a definition that emphasizes the “character” or “personality” that describes the guiding beliefs or ideals of a community, nation or ideology. For Alex Hlavna, who uses the stage name Ethos, the term is one that encapsulates everything he’s trying to represent as an independent musician. And when you see his name, you know it’s going to be associated with good things.
Ethos is a veteran session musician of the Cleveland, Ohio music scene who after 19 years of playing guitar, bass and drums in various original and cover projects has turned to hip-hop and producing of other artists under his brand Flipside. Ethos’ music combines elements of everything from rap to hip-hop to chill-step and even alternative rock – bringing listeners on an ambient journey of musical storytelling that revolves around the message of what Ethos really is.
“I want the Ethos brand to be more of a go-to destination for good things than anything else,” he said. “I’ve already built a small following on social media based on the content of my opinions and the memes I create and the things I’m saying. If you like who I am and what I post, then you’ll definitely like the music. I’m trying to convey that I’m different and my music is different and you can come here and be part of the Ethos brand and the movement that comes along with it.”
Ethos is an artist who creates what he calls “conscious rap” paired with a unique sound that rarely loses the listener’s attention. This is perhaps best displayed on his new album, “Ten Commandments,” which he plans to drop later this year. The album will be an “agnostic take on the infamous list that applies more to how we live life in 2019,” he said.
Earlier this year, he released two singles – “I’m Alright” and “Learning” – which have created some major momentum for him, gathering more than 6 million plays on his Soundcloud accounts. The songs demonstrate his ability to interweave unusual sounds – some might call them “eerie” – with catchy beats and stellar lyrics. “Learning” is the kind of song that hooks the listener from the beginning and has them bobbing their heads all throughout.
Ethos said he’s been pleasantly surprised at the overwhelming response he’s received from his new music. Rap has always been something he’s loved. As a session musician who specialized in instrumentals he didn’t get to explore that love for rap as much as he would have liked, and now that he’s dedicated his career to those new sounds and styles he’s finding the experience of stretching his muscles as a rapper to be the thrill of his life.
“That background as a session musician and the fact I can play instruments has been integral to making my music today, but more than that I want people to recognize that I’m a great rapper,” he said. “When you hear rap you know immediately if it’s good or bad – there is no middle ground. I have always loved English, and when you have a good understanding of the English language and broaden your vocabulary you can get away from those easy rhymes and it opens Pandora ’s Box for you. When people hear my music, they’ll know that it’s good and relatable and that I’m a one-of-a-kind musician who knows how to pair good beats with good lyrics and deliver high-quality music.”
In advance of his release of “Ten Commandments,” Ethos has dropped the two demo singles, “Adultery” and “Idolatry”. Ethos release demo tracks from the entire CD as they’re written so that when the album is released, people will get to have almost a brand new experience with the songs they’ve become attached to.
To listen to Ethos’ music, or to follow him on social media, please visit: