- No Stranger To Worry
- To Listen & Say Nothing
- Hands of Penance
- Laugh & The World Laughs With You
- Liable For Tragedy
- The Straight & The Winding Way
- The Golden Age
- Cut Sign
- Weep & You Weep Alone
- Tied To The Sunset
Artifex Pereo are a band that hearken back to better times in the music world. A time where bands didn’t care about popularity or mass appeal. Instead, they chose to play whatever the heck they wanted as they threw caution to the wind.
The lack of bands that are as sporadic and interesting as Artifex Pereo are sure to draw comparisons to the likes of I The Mighty, Far Less, and Circa Survive. While being compared to these bands is nothing to turn your nose up at, Artifex Pereo are able to take influences from all of the above and blend them into a unique and eclectic sound worthy of high praise.
Starting with No Stranger To Worry, Artifex Pereo flex their musical muscle as they show listeners that not only are they able to play a few different genres, but also they are not afraid to and will use those abilities to shake things up at every possible moment. While starting out a bit on the slower side, a smattering of keys, bass, and rim shots soon ascend into a full blown chorus that will stick in your brain every waking minute.
The wild ride known as “Time In Place” continues with To Listen & Say Nothing with vocalist Lucas Worley at the helm. Worley dictates the pace of the music, one moment he softly croons before flawlessly dabbling in near screams while in the next moment the frontman belts out a powerful chorus that would give Anberlin’s Stephen Christian a run for his money.
Hands of Penance is a cut above the rest. This track finds everyone in the band firing on full cylinders. Worley keeps in his characteristically sporadic vocal patterns, but this track really allows the band some leash to run wild with. Right off the bat, the group comes swinging with a heavier sound that previously heard on the record. Furiously fast drums and wicked guitar leads soon bleed into a shimmering nirvana of reverb. The start – stop mentality carries throughout the song, reaching its climax at a southern flavored breakdown.
Laugh & The World Laughs With You is another variable cornucopia of musical flavors, each vying for attention, but never stepping over any boundaries. With this track, “Too much of a good thing can be a bad thing” is a phrase that will never cross the listener’s mind. The unsung hero if this track is Jeremiah Brinkworth, the man behind the keys. One minute he’s laying down some classical influenced stylings while the next he tickles a southern gospel organ sound out of his ivorys amidst the most swagger packed guitar riff of the year.
Coming hot off the heels of a regular barn burner, Liable for Tragedy slows things down considerably. While this tempo change may seem a bit stunning at this point in the record since all the listener has experienced so far on the record was more in the vein of rock, it’s pleasant to hear a softer side of the band. Worley utilizes his unparalleled falsetto while a thick atmosphere of bass lines, ethereal keys, and swelling guitars give the track some real meat.
Aperion lives up to it’s definition nicely (a Greek word meaning unlimited, infinite, or indefinite) as it gradually builds over time before reaching a point where everything seems to blow the roof off and soar. The Golden Age continues to break any boundaries surrounding the perception of Artifex Pereo as vocal harmonies and group vocals add to the already large sound the group brings forth.
Tied To The Sunset is the longest track on “Time In Place” and while it isn’t the last track on the album, it seems to hearken the end. It seems the song was written with the end of the record in mind because a sombre feeling encompasses every note, almost as if the band is sad the musical ride they have brought you on is coming to a close.
The only drawback that comes from this fantastic record is a hard one for me to swallow. You see, what I love most about this record is how sporadic and eclectic it is. However, this also brings about a little of a downfall. The side effect caused by such an ever changing palette of sound is the fact that songs tend to not feel cohesive. Rather things can feel like parts instead of a whole being. I was thinking of songs as, “That one with the incredible drumming” or “The song that has terrific keys” rather than looking at the song as a whole.
Overall: Artifex Pereo are quite frankly, an incredible group. They stayed off my radar for far too long and I am constantly kicking myself for it. Do yourself a favor and don’t make the same mistake I did. “Time In Place” is a record worthy of your attention, your time, and your money.
RIYL: I The Mighty | Far Less | Circa Survive