Another release, and Artio have perfected their very own mix of alternative rock and big pop. ‘I Can’t Sleep’ straddles those so perfectly that my very first listen left me speechless. Of course this comes with the understanding that this is not a pinnacle from which they will fall but merely a step up in what I’m sure is a continuing upward journey. The next step will be the second of their ‘Shapeshifter’ EPs. And this, if you need to be told, is the lead single from that.
When this is heavy it hits you with a power that is going to physically knock you over, and then it’s oh-so sweet as it becomes poppy. It’s seamless and sounds so right.
And it’s filled with the things you expect from Artio. Wonderful vocals from Hol. A sound that is dense (when it’s dense) with layer on layer of sound but rewards closer listening with those subtle and clever touches. I know you’d expect this from the band but I can confirm it’s here to max in this song.
Another thing we all have come to expect from the band is a song that is about something or has an emotional meaning. Here the song deals with the all too familiar human state of feeling overwhelmed in situations and the effects that those uncontrollable feelings can have on relationships and your own mental well being. It does this in a way that is so direct and clearly reflects personal experiences. Hearing these words is an intense experience. We’ve all been there, I know I have.
What we have here is a song that is words, meaning and music that is in perfect harmony. The music reflects that feeling of being trapped, of feeling battered by what is happening.
How to sum this release up? This is simply stunning. My breath is now held for EP.