the very moment of its foundation "Metka"
had another name, which was "Black Label".
The band was formed in spring 2001 when its founder,
known in musical circles of St. Petersburg as "Zak
SV", recorded a demo version of song "Black
Label" and "Triangular Dream". Until
that time he played for some time as a session musician
in "Gorgona" and "Legioner" metla
bands on bass as well as tried himself to play a guitar
in a death-metal band "Exhumation", but then
he decided to play his own songs and so found another
guitarist, Alexander Kiykov.
Together they played for several months and then
started an active search for the missing band musicians.
In autumn they have found the drummer Kirill Dmitriev
and bass player Pavel Voronin. Metka line-up as accomplished
when a vocalist Vladimir Vetyukov came to listening
on 8 October 2001. It was decided to mark this day
as the birthday of the band.
"Metka" starts to learn musical material
and rehearse regulariry, preparing a concert program.
All music and english lyrics were written by Zack.
half a year "Metka" works on material
and team-work and gives its first gig on June
13 in a small underground (in direct and figurative
sense) club "Front" - where they got
quite positive reviews from the public.
They also drawing the attention of one of the
organizers and so got an invitation to continue
the concert activity at another club called "Orlandina",
that was just about to become popular among metalheads.
Also at this time under the influence of singer Vladimir
Vetyukov "Metka" decides to perform songs
not only in english language but also in russian.
So a long work on translating and adjusting the lyrics
Having played more than a dozen concerts in various
clubs, without any further breakthrough, Zack decides
to create an alliance with three prominent bands of
St. Petersburg metal scene at that time - a friendly
power metal "Legioner" and more heavy "Morrah"
and "Ascendancy". This idea was successfully
realized and these bands began working together, playing
as one cohort.
Concerts held by the Guild got an eminent success for
each of the bands and so they began to gain their first
rows of fans. The greatest success of the Guild came
in autumn 2003, when Zack managed to add to the Guild
a young, talented and promising power-metal band "Citadel"
with female vocals.
Meanwhile Metka was gaining momentum and in order
not to lose the resulting success it quickly begins
to prepare to record their first studio disc. At the
same time it was decided to add a keyboardist to create
a more melodious sound and fill a vacuum in the songs.
So they invited Zack's wife - Joe, who was one of
the founders of women's rock band "Gorgona".
Preliminary record rehearsals showed that "Metka"
would experience difficulties with the studio work because
of lack of preparation in terms of playing skills. So
a few months just before the studio musicians hone their
performing skills with triplicated force. However, in
January 2004, about one month prior to the studio, it
becomes apparent that a solo guitarist Alexander Kiykov
doesn't cope with the solo parts, and therefore Zack
made a difficult decision to replace him. So he invited
a solo guitarist from the "Citadel" - a young
but very talented Sergey Tshe.
In February "Metka" goes to a well-known
St. Petersburg rock-studio "Neva"
where many russian rock musicians worked before,
such as "Chizh", "Pilot",
"Leningrad," "The King and the
Jester" as well as old heavy metal bands
- "Great Sorrow", "Vengeance","Stalwart".
The recording took place with varying success,
the schedule was constantly shifting, and various
organizational and technical reasons extended
the work until the autumn, although originally
it was planned to complete the album in June.
Having played only one concert, the group takes
a short summer break. Closer to the autumn "Metka"
starts home probe recording of vocals by Vladimir
Vetyukov, who also diligently works on the adjustment
of russian language version of lyrics, while
Zack was working on an english variant.
Also at the general assembly of the group,
after long debates and discussions it was decided
to rename the band from "Black Label"
into the "Chernaya Metka".
August 2004 was marred by the following event - Kirill
Dmitriev (drums) declares his resignation from the band
to realize himself in the music of entirely different
genre. So "Metka" starts the long quest for
a decent drummer.
In late autumn both russian and english versions
of vocals are finally ready and at the same studio
Denis Mozhin (bands "Awesome", "Leningrad")
starts to work on mixing and mastering, which finishes
only in the winter.
After listening to a few candidates (on drums) by the
end of January 2005 Sergei Tshe finds a suitable drummer
- Sergey Bushkevich. With the new drummer "Metka"
starts tight rehearsal and preparation of updated musical
program resulting in the series of concerts in spring
season 2005 in St. Petersburg rock clubs. At the same
time "Metka" starts working on a new material
that Zack had planned to make in a more modern and hard
Spring brings problems with solo-guitarist Sergey
Tshe, who was unable to combine active musical work
in two bands at once, and so "Metka" starts
searchings of a new solo guitarist.
Because of problems with the design of the debut
disc, it was released only in June. At the same time
"Metka" jumps in the studio again to record
one of its most interesting compositions - a cover
song "Plastic Crow", which for at that moment
had become a "visiting card" of the band.
After thinking hard the musicians decide to take up
the release, promotion and distribution of the discs
by themselves in order to have all the control sticks
in their own hands and make all the possible to ensure
that the songs would be heard by people.
In June, after the announcement in the Internet,
"Metka" finds a new solo guitarist - Daniel
Kuzin, who perfectly fits the band. With a just released
debut album and new musical program "Metka"
gets a powerful charge of enthusiasm and begins to
work hardly to prepare for the autumn concert season
and to the presentation of their CD.
During the summer months the album has already
received distribution and popularity and even
before the presentation "Metka" gathers
many fans who were eagerly awaiting their autumn
Presentation was held on 28 August 2005 with
stunning success and after that "Metka"
acquired a huge fan club which helped not only
in terms of fierce support at the concerts but
also in organizational and promotional activities.
Soon on the wave of success "Metka"
established contacts with the organizers from
Moscow and it became possible to buy "Metka"
CD's in the capital.
In autumn "Metka" leaves Saint-Petersburg
for the first time and gives a concert in Moscow at
a club rock festival with such famous russian metal
bands as "Natisk" and "Ange".
In winter the musicians took a small vacation and spring
begins concert activity in St. Petersburg and Moscow
in support of the newly released english version of
debut album - "Stepping through the mirror".
It was decided to change english name of the band
into "METKA", a universal word that is written
and pronounced identically in both russian and english.
In early summer "Metka" gives the first
big solo concert without warming-up bands, with a
2 hours of musical and competitive program, and that
has become a sort of culmination on this stage of
the band's creative path. After this large and successful
activities some of band members went on vacation,
while others continue to work on old and new music
material. But from that moment there begin the bad
times in band's history - in late June the bass guitarist
Pavel Voronin, who played in the group since its very
moment of foundation due to some personal reasons
expresses his desire to leave the band. Thus there
begins the searchings for a decent candidate on the
bass guitar. Summer photo session that was scheduled
for the second album which was to get the name "Sands
of Time" took place without the participation
In autumn "Metka" finds a bass guitarist
Ivan Vetrogonov who came to listening from a distant
city of Simferopol. Also they find a band manager
- Igor Chernomor - an experienced organizer of some
major concerts and a representative in St. Petersburg
of such famous metal bands as "Aria", "Mavrin",
"Master", "Arteria". Together
with him "Metka" plays a bit anniversary
(5 years) concert at "Roks Club" and prepares
for the first mini-tour to other cities, however there
followed only a not so successful "test"
solo concerts in the town of Tikhvin.
In winter 2007 "Metka" gives another solo
concert on the "old new" year (13th of January)
and then decides to do preparings for the studio to
record a second disc. Nevertheless, because of the personal
problems and different views among the musicians "Metka"
doesn't succeed in working on the album and stops regular
rehearses. Due to the loss of shape and enthusiasm the
three spring concerts are held quite wretchedly and
so in summer 2007 Zack Eswee and Vladimir Vetyukov decides
to declare a complete "freezing" of any band's
creative activities till best times.
Nevertheless, there was the decision to publish at
least some of the new material in the electronic form,
and thus by autumn "Metka" puts on the site
a midi-compilation "Sands of Time", which
is exactly the half of the planned album. However
even bringing in the order all of these songs continues
for more than half a year and was completed only in
March 2008 with the publication of the last track
"Black & White".