George Starostin's Reviews



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Robert Stefaniuk (27.10.2005)

This is indeed strange beginning of Roussos and Vangelis careers, when they decide to be in one band. And they want to do an ambitious music connected with the fashionable psychedelic rock, are expected to conquer the european pop music charts, and during working on their material are often in the mood for joking. The effect is diversed and everybody can rate it differently.
Demis is trying various experiments with his voice, it is indeed fun to hear him making some hard-rock screams on "You always stand in my way", but it is not that bad. Sometimes he suprises me with his skills, as in the sad and nervous "The day of the fool", when he plays a role of the crazy man. Here his simple voice of the fool has a great tension hidden inside.
In the croony ballads created partly to conquer the european charts ( with miserable result ) they achieve various effect. "It's five 'o clock" and "End of the word" are great for me (so they might be at least good for others). In "I want to live" and "Spring, summer, winter and fall" the croony vocal can sound mannered and be hard to tolerate for most people, but I like it. "Annabela" and "Rain and Tears" are a bit to mild. And the worst one, "Marie Jolie" is really boring. There are also a songs "Quando l'amore divenda poesia" and "Lontano dagli occhi" made for San Remo festival and italian pop audience, which are suicide for "Aphrodite's Child" as the serious and creative band, but makes things even more funny. / George, don't be so serious and check them out ;) / Vangelis, while playing and arranging a songs, often included some funny moments and twists, risking that his music will be rated as immature, artificial, or even stupid. But it is not bad attitude for such a young musician, as he was at that time. You can also sometimes spot his musical talent in it.
And finally their most ambitious effort, 666 album, combines all the irony and diversity with great music and detailed idea, resulting in truly great conceptual album. It could be the beginning of their golden era, but it was their end.


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Ryan Maffei (23.07.2002)

Well, George, you truly are a man of eclectic tastes. I am proud not only because you have bothered to review this mammoth testament to Greek art-rock pomposity and pretension, but that you have given it the credit it deserves as an enjoyable, wildly unpredictable landmark semi-masterpiece. Good man. Hats off, as it is said. I would suggest for the rest of you to shill out the 30-odd bucks it takes to get a compact disc copy of this little devil and check it out--80 minutes of mischievous, glorious, utterly bizarre fun.

Keith (20.09.2002)

A progger can only stand on England's shores for so long before realizing the party didn't end so soon and the age was larger. I have access to a huge record library and came across this album. It was uncatalogued. I just found it. I saved first listening for a stoned walk through the Canadian National Exhibition and the journey was often electrifying. The album has a hot summer buzz to it, with the bleached white stones of a Turkish island lining your path. Your review centres on the first side, and while I agree with your assessments, something should be said for "Do it", "Agean Sea" and "Altamont". Perhaps you should start with the second record (third side) next time. I can find the composition style tedious at times with intriguing ideas running themselves out with little concern for change and development.
But I can also hear Roger Waters listening to the playback of voice elements in the final "Seats were all Occupied" with an eye to executing DSOTM. Radiohead also borrowed from "Goodbye" methinks. Kudo's to you for a massive and wonderfully considerred compendium of reviews.

Costas Ferris (21.07.2003)

Dear George, it was a pleasure for me to read (at last) an accurate review about our 666 album. Most of the people missed the ironic, sarcastic and humoresque aspect of this work, which is more obvious i.e. in "The Beast" or "Infinity", but discreet in many other tracks. Although, I am affraid that you missed some points, most probably by lack of infornation:
1. This "concept album" is in fact the soundtrack of a vast theatrical show-concert, and for this purpose I wrote the (unpublished) book, and lyrics. Unfortunately, the show was never produced.
2. It is not Demis who wanted to avoid a more progressive (than "Rain and Tears") sound, on the contrary, he was very enthusiastic for a turning of the band's music. It was Vangelis who prefered to minimize the participation of Demis, just to bring-out better his composer's talent, with no interference of the "Demis the star"'s weight.
3. Some of the "lyrics" (such as the "announcements" as I call them) are indeed from the "Apocalypse" (how could it be different), but there are always some slight inversions or alterations of the meaning, so to support the p.o.v. of the work. Finally, my (and our) intention was to create a "rock-extravaganza" for the 60s, and I believe, that we succeded on the sound level.
Regards Costas Ferris
P.S.1 I didn't have the time to write lyrics for Demis, as I was then going-back-home to Greece, but I wrote the lyrics for Lukas' "One day".
P.S.2 Sorry for my mediocre English.

Barry Stoller (24.08.2004)

Bewildering, exhilarating, spooky and nasty. Thank heavens Charles Manson wasn't tripping on this one. I'm a real loyalist when it comes to Bloodrock 3, especially their doomsday statement 'Breach Of Lease,' but I'll concede side one of this demented LP is the shit.

Robert Stefaniuk (04.08.2005)

While I totally agree with your complains about "All the seats were occupied" ( it's way too long ), I think you shouldn't blame the "Infinity". It's entirely connected to the concept of the album. The closing mumbling and screaming of the beast being captured. The beast should sound extraordinary. And it don't have to be attractive sound for the listener ( after all, the beast is not the attractive incarnation of evil forces ). The main assumption in my opinion was to make it sound like some wild, not humanoid being. People think it is an orgasm - this interpretation simplifies everything too much.

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