Saturday, February 26, 2011


Vangelis is one of a kind. Started his career in Greece in the 60s with a garage/pop band named Forminx, then formed Aphrodite’s Child, worldwide famous psychedelic/progressive band (their album 666 sold over 20 million copies) and then went solo to become one of the pioneers of electronic music, won the Oscar for Chariots of Fire OST, was awarded by NASA, became Knight of the Order of Arts and Letters in France etc etc… You can find his full bio here and here.

Below you will find 5 distinct moments in his career that prove his genius in whatever he was involved with.

1. Our Last September - The Forminx
This is a mellow track from the early days in the 60s. It's a Vangelis composition from their first album. 

2. The Four Horsemen - Aphrodite's Child
Written in 1970 for album 666 but released some years later it is considered a prog masterpiece.

3. The Dragon - Vangelis
Early 70s from the album with same name. This album is an unofficial release as Vangelis did not approve it. A hypnotic groove. Masterpiece.

4. Astral Abuse - Alpha Beta
Alpha Beta is Vangelis, Argyris 'Silver' Koulouris (Aphrodite's Child guitar player in 666) and Vilma Lado (Greek 60s singer). They only released this single in 1971. It's only 2 songs but it is something very unique. Julian Cope puts this under Kraut Rock tag and he's right. 

5. Queen of the Universe - Socrates
Socrates (Drunk the Conium) was a Greek hard rock/progressive Greek band from 70s. Vangelis produced their album Phos and also played keyboards. 

Friday, February 25, 2011

Groovy Soundtracks

Greece has not the wealth of soundtracks Italy or France have and certainly not the rich jazz groove that one can find in almost any well-known or not Italian b-movie soundtrack. Yet the music is there, mostly undiscovered, as there are lots of Greek movies of the 60s and 70s -a very productive era for the Greek cinema - with great but still unpublished music!

There was an attempt to explore the richness of Greek b-movie soundtracks through Greek label Potfleur which unfortunately did not last. The label ceased operation but still managed to publish some gems.  2 out of 5 posts below were published by Potfleur.

What follows is a sampler of 5 fine grooves from Greek composers:

1. Title Theme from Anazitisis (Search) - Yiannis Spanos
(from Anazitisis movie, 1972)

2. On the Streets - Mikis Theodorakis
(from Serpico with Al Pacino, 1973)

3. A Travers Montmartre - Stelios Vlavianos
(from Le Jeune Fabre French TV series, 1970)

4. La Discotheque - Mike Rozakis
(from She Knew no Other Way, 1973)

5. Fluted Vibrator - George Theodosiadis
(from Gynaecocracy, 1973)

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