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ARGO

Crossover Prog • Lithuania


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Argo biography
ARGO's founder ,one of the greatest modern Lithuanian composer Giedrius Kuprevicius (b. 1944) was graduated by Lithuanian Music Academy (composition) in 1968 and worked as music teacher in Kaunas College Of Music. Still since 1957 he has played the Kaunas carillon (and in 1998 was appointed Kaunas City head carillonist). In 1975 he wrote one of the most popular musical in Lithuania,"Fire Hunt and Beaters", which was staged also in Latvia, Estonia, Russia, Ukraine, and Moldova. The composer also writes music in traditional classical genres: operas, symphonies chamber works, oratorios, vocal cycles, etc.

In late 70-s he was attracted with electronic music and was one the very first musician and composer, experimented with electronic organ "Vilnius-5". ARGO ( full name "electronic music group ARGO") was formed at the Kaunas Musical Theatre in 1979.It included members of the Theatre orchestra. Giedrius Kuprevicius, the artistic director of the group, thus describes the activity of ARGO: The predominance of electronics in the creative work of the group bears out our desire to master and artistically interpret the possibilities of modern musical instruments. We are the first who are entrusted with testing the Vilnius-5 model of a new electronic organ. We are sure of good prospects of the instrument" .

The group takes part in performances of the Musical Theatre, has prepared a concert-show "The Deepest Well Reflects the Sky", which later became band's first recording. "We sought to make use of wide possibilities afforded by recording equipment, DISCOPHONY consists as if of two musical layers: disco-intended for entertainment and based on dance rhythms, and -phony-music for listening with predominating, electronic sound". The vocal part is interpreted in an instrumental way. Julius Vilnonis, the leader of the ARGO group, makes his debut with one of the compositions (A3). If the whole work of ARGO could be compared to days of week, then Saturday would be the day of Discophony.
Second album, "SVIESA" (The Light), is possibly their best work. Light combination of electronic sounds and jazzy arrangements, with jazzy vocals as well, very melodic, accessible, but enough complex under the skin.

Later band recorded two more conceptual albums, each was presented as theatrical show as well. Giedrius missed his interest to electronics, and left the band (which was disbanded very soon, in 1987) for composing operas, music for films and some experi...
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Handel(Vinyl LP)Ballet Music-Argo-ZK 68-UK-VG+/Ex+ US $14.91 Buy It Now 30m 7s
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Etta James "The Second Time Around" Original ARGO 4011 US $39.99 [0 bids]
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SCHUBERT Mass in A Flat - ASMF & Guest - ARGO ZRG-869 - LP NM US $3.99 Buy It Now 2h 38m
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SCHUBERT Part Songs - ARGO ZRG-527 - uk oval 2nd NM US $4.99 Buy It Now 2h 38m
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CLARENCE HENRY ~ YOU ALWAYS HURT THE ONE YOU LOVE rare ARGO R&B frogman VG US $5.00 Buy It Now 2h 40m
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ON CHRISTMAS NIGHT Vinyl LP LSO King's College Choir ARGO ZRG 5333 US $2.00 Buy It Now 2h 57m
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1961 Sensations Let Me In / Oh Yes I'll Be True ARGO Canada A-5405X 45 rpm NM- US $30.00 Buy It Now 4h 7m
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Etta James Pushover Rare 1963 Argo 45-5437 Mono VG+ (Northern Soul) US $9.00 Buy It Now 5h 29m
Rare Debussy Trio Ravel Introduction Bax Elegiac Robles/Delme Argo Reel to Reel US $18.99 [0 bids]
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5h 45m
AHMAD JAMAL AT THE PERSHING VOL TWO #LP667 VG++/EX ARGO RECORDS 1961 US $11.99 Buy It Now 5h 51m
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"YEA, YEA" b/w "WON'T YOU BE MY BABY" / THE KENDALL SIS. / 45 RPM / ARGO 5291 US $2.99 [0 bids]
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Pastels So Far Away / Don't Knock Rare 1958 Vocal Group Doo Wop on Argo US $7.99 [0 bids]
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6h 13m
BORIS ORD An Easter Mattins Ex+ Argo 1960s UK LP US $11.59 [0 bids]
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BORIS ORD A festival Of Lessons & Carols Ex+ Argo 1960s UK LP US $11.59 [0 bids]
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*R&B* *SOUL* ~Etta James~ :: Loving You More Every Day :: on ARGO (1964) ~HEAR~ US $19.99 [0 bids]
6h 37m
BABY FACE WILLETTE ~ Mo' Rock ~ ARGO 739 jazz LP deep groove US $7.99 [0 bids]
6h 38m
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Jazz LP Kenny Burrell Trio "Night at the Vanguard" Argo 655 US $7.99 [0 bids]
6h 44m
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6h 53m
Hi Heel Sneakers / Dangerous Dan Express Three Souls -Argo 45 Rpm 12891 DJ promo US $2.00 Buy It Now 7h 13m
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DOO WOP / ROCK ~ THE SENSATIONS ~ARGO (BLK LBL) 5405 "OH YES, I'LL BE TRUE" 1961 US $13.25 [0 bids]
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7h 17m
Jazz 45 AL GREY Things Ain't What They Used To Be on Argo US $5.00 Buy It Now 7h 18m
ROCK ~ ROD BERNARD ~ ARGO 5327 "PARDON MR. GORDON" 1959 US $6.95 [0 bids]
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7h 31m
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PAUL GONSALVES ~ Cookin' ~ ARGO 626 jazz LP (mono, deep groove) US $55.00 [22 bids]
7h 42m
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George Malcolm/Marriner HANDEL Organ Concertos - Argo ZRG 888 SEALED US $20.00 Buy It Now 7h 57m
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ARGO-926 MENDELSSOHN: Symphonies Nos. 3 & 4 OOP NEW 12" Vinyl Record US $8.99 Buy It Now 8h 42m
BENJAMIN LUXON Baritone Give me a ticket to heaven Double Vinyl LP ARGO ZFB95-6 US $19.88 Buy It Now 8h 43m

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ARGO discography


Ordered by release date | Showing ratings (top albums) | Help Progarchives.com to complete the discography and add albums

ARGO top albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

4.00 | 6 ratings
Discophonia
1980
4.04 | 5 ratings
Sviesa
1981
4.50 | 4 ratings
Zemė L
1985

ARGO Live Albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

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ARGO Official Singles, EPs, Fan Club & Promo (CD, EP/LP, MC, Digital Media Download)

ARGO Reviews


Showing last 10 reviews only
 Sviesa by ARGO album cover Studio Album, 1981
4.04 | 5 ratings

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Sviesa
Argo Crossover Prog

Review by snobb
Special Collaborator Honorary Collaborator

4 stars Giedrius Kuprevicius, composer and Argo's founder, played carillon in his hometown of Kaunas from he was 13.Later graduated by Music Academy he became renowned composer and author of first Lithuanian rock-opera (1975). In late 70-s he became attracted with electronic music and founded Argo as "electronic music group".

"Sviesa" ("The Light") is band's second album. Even if title "electronic music band" is placed even on LP's cover, electronic sound is only part of common album's music. Such accent on "electronic" was understandable more as fashion of time.

In fact, Argo was quite classic band with guitar/bass/drums plus two synth/keys on board. Main attraction (for the time) was first domestic electronic organ "Vilnius-5" ( by the way produced on secret Soviet military electronics factory as "side-product"). Giedrius classic musical education is obvious in music - even if he combines it with strong jazzy influences. All the music is light, sunny ( in Northern Europe sunny summer's manner) melodic instrumental compositions (with some boy's chorus vocals in places). Plenty of electric organ/synth light spacey effects are more accessories, filling the space. Besides of keyboards, guitar/bass/drums trio plays relaxed, a bit dreamy progressive jazzy prog rock you can often find in Western European albums from early 70-s.

I think big advance of album's music is that electronic keyboards sound never overload true music of classic jazz-rock section. As a result listener hear rare balance between early progressive jazz-rock and electric organ/synth sound. Whenever all music is very melodic, easy accessible, all the album is pleasant , but never cheese.

Never re-released on CD, this album stays a collectors rarity for fans of early Eastern European prog.

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