Definitions

Archontes

archon

[ahr-kon]

In ancient Greece, the chief magistrate or magistrates in a city-state, from the Archaic period onward. In Athens, nine archons divided state duties: the archon eponymous headed the boule and Ecclesia, the polemarch commanded troops and presided over legal cases involving foreigners, the archon basileus headed state religion and the Areopagus, and the six remaining archons handled various judicial matters. At first only elected aristocrats could serve, and their term was for life; later, terms were limited to a year. Archons were chosen by a combination of election and lot. In the 5th century BC the authority of the archons declined as elected generals assumed most of their powers.

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Archontes is a Christian power metal/progressive metal band founded by Andrey "Archont" Fedorenko in Moscow, Russia in 1993. Archontes is one of the most notable Christian metal bands in Russia.

History

Early stages

Archontes started in Moscow, Russia in 1993. Vocalist and keyboardist Andrey Fedorenko is considered the founding member. Later that year, Eugene "Gene Hans" Savostyanov joined the band as guitarist. As soon as the first band lineup was complete, they started recording the first demo tape "Concerto For A Little Darkness And Orchestra". The demo contained 4 tracks. Most of the lyrics were influenced by books of Roger Zelazny, and the album itself was dedicated to the memory of that writer.

The recording was made in the following line-up:

  • Andrey "Archont" - vocals, keyboards
  • Eugene "Gene Hans" Savostianov = guitar
  • Alexander Rekonvald - guitar
  • Grigory Kozlov - bass
  • Vladimir Latintsev - drums

After making their first demo recording, the band started a series of concerts in Moscow clubs with the "Concerto For A Little Darkness And Orchestra" set. At the time, progressive and power metal music was not well-known in Russia, and the rumours of the Russian melodic metal pioneers were spread among the circles of Helloween, Rage and Blind Guardian fans.

The band played at Moscow rock clubs and participated in several festivals. Some songs were played on Keeper of the Rings (later Dream Keeper) - a heavy metal show on " Moscow Echo" radio. Vsevolod Baronin has recognized the band as one of the most promising Russian independent bands and one of the best live acts of 1995. Also at this time, the band's line up was under constant change. According to Fedorenko, these changes were a sign of the band's evolution and its creative and professional growth.

In 1995, the band recorded their second demo tape, "Holy Battle has Begun". The demo contained 2 tracks.

Saga Of Eternity

After a split-up in 1996, when all accompanying musicians left the band, Fedorenko worked with Adolf Castle for some time, then decided to reform Archontes, composing songs for the new album. By the end of 1996, Gene Hans returns, and the vacancy of a bassist is filled by Sergey Shvora. The drummer, Alexey Bykov, also came back, playing live with "Korrozia Metalla" at the same time. By the summer of 1997, Archontes recorded their first album, "Saga Of Eternity," released by Russian Metalagen Records in 1998. Critics noted a poor quality to the album, however, at that time, the recording facilities in Russia were not affordable for the majority of musicians.

Lineup: 1997-2000

  • Andrey "Archont" Fedorenko - vocals, keyboards
  • Eugene "Gene Hans" Savostianov - guitars
  • Sergey Shvora - bass
  • Alexey Bykov - drums

A bagpipe solo was performed by Vladimir "McLaser" Laserson, known in Russia for his work with folk/folk-rock bands such as Puck And Piper and Tintal. The march on "The Crown Of Spring" was drummed by Dmitry Shamaev. The album was on sale in Russia and abroad.

The World Where Shadows Come To Life

Fedorenko composed songs for the next album, The World Where Shadows Come To Life, which was released in 1999 by Valiant Music in Russia. In 2000 it appears in some European countries. According to Fedorenko, this album is about the desire of a human to transcend into another world, "a world of dreams, a world of good books and the world of music."

The band eventually split up due to musical and personal conflicts. Gene Hans and Sergey Shvora formed a band called "The Hunters." Alexey Bykov leaves Archontes at around the same time. By May of 2000, Fedorenko formed another lineup which started rehearsals and concerts.

Lineup: 2000

  • Andrey Fedorenko - vocals, keyboards
  • Zakhar Karpikov - guitars
  • Sergey Belyavsky - drums
  • Vasily Marchenko - bass

This lineup plays until the end of the 2000-2001 concert season.

In Spring of 2001, Sergey Belyavsky leaves the band due to personal reasons. Since September 2001, Archontes have a new drummer - Dmitry Krivenkov (ex-Legion). Shortly afterwards Zakhar Karpikov is replaced by another ex-Legion member, Vyacheslav Molchanov, and Vasily Marchenko - by Sergey Zakharov, who worked on a previous release.

In 2002 the, a Russian festival was planned for the Spring 2002, featuring bands such as Uriah Heep, Gamma Ray, Grave Digger, and Sodom among others. There was no such festical in Russia for 10 years, the last one being the 1991 "Tushino" festival, featuring bands such as Metallica and AC/DC. Archontes were included in the list of Russian bands participaring in the new festival. However, the festival was cancelled and as compensation for festival cancellation, Archontes were offered to support Blind Guardian at Luzhniki Arena in October of 2002. The show was nearly cancelled by the time Archontes were on stage ready to play as someone reported a bomb in the arena. Police found no evidence of a bomb and the show continued. Blind Guardian had to shorten their set in order to fit in the schedule.

A week after the cancelled support of Blind Guardian Sergey Zakharov was fired from the band. Archontes continued studio work, but live performances came to a halt due to lack of free time of band members, continuously occupied with other projects. In 2003, Vyacheslav Molchanov had to resign as a live guitarist, although he has completed his work on the album. He was replaced by Leodin Fomin (ex-Master, Val'Kyria, Sabotage). Vasily Marchenko returned to play bass guitar.

Book One: A Child Of Two Worlds

In September 2004, Archontes completed their third studio work: Book One: A Child Of Two Worlds.

In 2005, Saga Of Eternity album was re-released by Valiant

Former members

  • Eugene "Gene Hans" Savostianov (guitar, 1993 - 2000)
  • Alexander Rekonvald (guitar, 1993 - 1995)
  • Grigory Kozlov (bass, 1993 - 1994)
  • Vladimir Latintsev (drums, 1993)
  • Sergey Rassohin (drums, 1994)
  • Sergey Zakharov (bass, 1994-1996, 2002)
  • Alexey Bykov (drums, 1995 - 2000)
  • Sergey Shvora (bass, 1997 - 2000)
  • Zakhar Karpikov (guitar, 2000 - 2001)
  • Sergey Belyavsky (drums, 2000)
  • Dmitry Krivenkov (drums, 2000 - 2004)
  • Vyacheslav Molchanov (guitar, 2001-2004)

Albums

External links and references

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