Two Siberians come to Riga

  • 2005-03-02
  • By TBT staff
RIGA - Artyom Yakushenko and Yuri Matveev quite literally live up to the name of the Two Siberians. The talented duo hails from the vast, ruggedly beautiful and almost mythical land of Siberia.

The musicianship of Yakushenko (electric violin) and Matveev (electric guitar) is exceptional and their sound is unique. Renowned throughout Russia, the Two (or two) Siberians also possess a strong stage presence as performing is in their blood: Yakushenko's father, Yevgeny Yakushenko, is known as the "Father of Siberian Rock," while Matveev's parents are Russian folk dancers.

The two debuted at a festival in Novosibirsk, Siberia, and won the award for Best Original Artists.

From then on, the duo hit the Trans-Siberian railway and their star has been rapidly rising ever since. They have garnered tremendous acclaim throughout Russia, and recently caused a sensation when they performed in Moscow. In New York, a free performance one day in Times Square so impressed an ABC Nightline producer that he had them filmed for a segment of that show.

In their new album, "Out of Nowhere," the talented twosome displays the inventive energy and emotive force that stems from the deep love of an art and mastery of form. Backed by an impressive supporting cast including headline guests Michael Brecker and Don Byron, as well as Richard Bona, Mino Cinelu, and Matt Garrison, the album presents original compositions from start to finish, and although all the music resonates with a similar folkloric feel, the dominating theme is that of diversity and ingenuity.

Threading together numerous musical styles from every corner of the world, Matveyev and Yakushenko have created a sound uniquely their own, fusing everything from polkas to power rock, jazz ballads and gypsy guitar.

What you will hear is a gorgeous combination of jazz-rock-fusion and ethnic compositions from this dynamic duet. This kind of music requires close attention to the details of each track and many listens before you can truly appreciate it. The focus and depth of the artists and their music is exceptional.

This music is refreshingly unique and emotionally satisfying. Songs such as the haunting "On the Tundra," the expansive "Come with Me Anyway," the frenetic "Vodka Diaries," and the multi-textured, yearning "Evidence of Things Not Seen" will leave you feeling breathless, and at a loss for words. Which is what good music is really all about.