|Release Date||28 Dec 2018|
Relatively unknown Moscow band Артерия released their fourth record after a four year break. Знаки, though often sorrowful, unleashes some heavy fucking tunes, with strings, synth lines, and choral backups sprinkled throughout that add plenty of depth and an epic feel. The choruses are anthemic and the band is tight. You’ll likely end up coming back to this album a few times like I did.
After the first three tracks, which are good (but not great), the album picks up momentum and delivers striking performances that’ll knock you on your ass.
Notably, drummer Sergey Kutayev is awesome. There’s never a dull moment when he’s kicking the shit out of his kit. His pattering lines are sometimes reminiscent of Neil Peart or Elvenking‘s Symohn. Ivan Zhernovkov’s rough and powerful vocals bring serious sincerity into each song. Additionally, the guitar solos of Sergey Terentyev, though not exceptionally fast or shredding, are truly well done.
Two songs earn their place as my favourites. ‘Стихия огня’ is heroic and has a chanting chorus that is reminiscent of a battle song. Zhernovkov’s vocals are cleaner in this one, which makes for a much different feel. ‘Номер один’ though more melancholic, loses no energy and finishes the album strong.
There’s no shortage of glorious solos, but I love the one in ‘Я буду ждать’, which starts quietly and tastefully before taking off over Kutayev’s rampant drum beat.
Another track that stands out is ‘Жизнь — игра!’. It begins tamely but quickly turns into what is easily the hardest song on the album. There is a cool electronic break at the end, finishing in a cut-time dub-step beat.
As my first taste of Артерия, Знаки has placed them well in my books. It’s pretty fucking solid. It offers plenty of variety and is remarkably expressive. The drums kept me on my toes and the I absolutely loved the vocals. Oh, and, the album artwork is really cool. I highly recommend checking out this record and I especially recommend listening to the rest of Артерия’s material.