Artension was the brainchild of Shrapnel Records head Mike Varney. He received a demo from wunderkind keyboardist Vitalij Kuprij and progressive axeman Roger Staffelbach of a project they called "Atlantis Rising". Varney began to look for other musicians to round out the lineup. After a lot of consideration, Varney presented Vitalij and Roger with vocalist John West, Bassist Kevin Chown, and drummer Mike Terrana. The result was a band called Artension (named by the band for a combination of the words "art" and "tension") and a CD called "Into the Eye of the Storm".
Into The Eye Of The Storm
Artension was centered around then twenty-two year old Ukrainian keyboardist Vitalij Kuprij (Transiberian Orchestra) and Swiss guitarist Roger Staffelbach. Incredible vocals by John West (Royal Hunt) helped to create a progressive metal sound, inspired by bands such as Rainbow and Dream Theater, which complemented the wailing solo trade-offs between guitar and keyboards.