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CICCADA

Eclectic Prog • Greece


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Ciccada biography

CICCADA is a band from Athens, Greece, formed in 2005.

The band is made up of:
- Dimi Spela / vocals
- Evangelia Kozoni / vocals
- Yorgos Mouhos / 6- and 12-string acoustic guitars, electric guitar, vocals
- Nicolas Nikolopoulos / flute, clarinet, tenor and baritone saxophones, recorder, piano, electric piano, organ, Mellotron, synthesizers, harpsichord, Clavinet, glockenspiel, backing vocals
- Marietta Tsakmakli/ soprano, alto and baritone saxophones, backing vocals
- Aggelos Malisovas / fretted and fretless basses
- Yiannis Iliakis / drums, percussion, backing vocals.


The music of CICCADA is heavily rooted in folk music; it's complex, compelling, borrowing influneces from many other spheres of progressive rock or more. If you're intrigued by fusing the most complex moments of GRYPHON and GENTLE GIANT, this band is highly recommended.

They released their debut "A Child In The Mirror" for Fading Records, which is a subdivision of Italian label AltrOck Productions, in June 2010.
The follow-up,"The Finest Of Miracles" came out in February 2015, again by Fading Records, while in April 23rd 2021, Bad Elephant Music released their third output "Harvest".

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CICCADA discography


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

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

3.80 | 257 ratings
A Child In The Mirror
2010
3.91 | 276 ratings
The Finest Of Miracles
2015
4.18 | 55 ratings
Harvest
2021

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

CICCADA Videos (DVD, Blu-ray, VHS etc)

CICCADA Boxset & Compilations (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

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

5.00 | 2 ratings
Tales
2016

CICCADA Reviews


Showing last 10 reviews only
 Harvest by CICCADA album cover Studio Album, 2021
4.18 | 55 ratings

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Harvest
Ciccada Eclectic Prog

Review by omphaloskepsis

4 stars Hailing from Greece like a comet, Ciccada's third album streaks across the prog sky. Traditional folk instrumentation washes my skull in complex waves reminiscent of a mellow Gentle Giant. Marietta Tsakmakle and Nicolas Nicolopoulos share their diverse woodwind collection, clarinets, recorders, as soprano saxes evoke memories of Tull's "A Passion Play". Ubiquitous 6 and 12 string Greek guitars pluck mystic satyr chord progressions.

Dimi Spela and Evangelia Kozoni share lead vocals. The vocals never overwhelm the filigree lattice arrangements. The band periodically adds wood sprite chants that would fit in perfectly with 1974's pagan horror film, "The Wicker Man". Ciccada's magic music will calm, entertain, and transport you to a Arcadian yet fertile feral harvest. Highly recommended for hedonists drunk on the heady harvest of Gryphon, Gentile Giant, Renaissance, Advent and Jethro Tull.

 Harvest by CICCADA album cover Studio Album, 2021
4.18 | 55 ratings

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Harvest
Ciccada Eclectic Prog

Review by Rivertree
Special Collaborator PSIKE Team & Band Submissions

4 stars This band is hailing from Greece, known for delivering a sophisticated blend of folk, psychedelia and art rock since some time. Their albums all were released with a lapse of five years approximately. That means space enough to accurately prepare the ground in every case. 'Harvest' appears as their third one, this time distributed through the acclaimed Bad Elephant Music label. It is quite usual, a rather extensive staff is listed in the liner notes, where the band constants right from the beginning are Yorgos Mouhos (guitars) and multi-instrumentalist Nicolas Nikolopoulos. Both are also responsible for the compositions and arrangements. And not to forget Evangelia Kozoni of course. She is providing her mellow folk tinged singing (and reciting) voice with bravura again. On this occasion within a duo quasi, also having second female lead vocalist Dimi Spela on her side.

According to the album title, the cover image so much the more, one can say they have successfully reaped and sorted the products of their recent recording sessions. Well, the result is tasty, versatile and definitely healthy. Balm for the soul. Besides the well-appointed vocals, what also strikes everywhere throughout is the great organ and guitar interplay. Eh, do I hear a flute or the mighty Mellotron actually? They are opting for a very nice and warm entry into the album, immediately offering a typical trademark. Folk, Jazz and Art rock elements perfectly blended together, based on charming melodies all over. Where the very present flute arrangements sometimes are sounding like a well thought out duet of British (Tull) and native Greek inspiration. Terrific!

The Old Man And The Butterfly partially resembles US psych folk bands from the 1970s, let's say 'Jefferson Airplane' or 'It's A Beautiful Day' for example. This way more tricky, multi-varianted though. Swirling instruments, especially flute, saxophone respectively clarinet, Who's To Decide sounds like joy of living set into music, just imagine people dancing all around with feeling of happiness. Queen Of Wishes comes last, the definite album highlight. Mellow and heavy rocking sections are flowing in peaceful coexistence. The more perfect the arrangements, the more there is to harvest, simple as that. A pleasant listen in its entirety. I am very delighted with CICCADA's new piece of work.

 A Child In The Mirror by CICCADA album cover Studio Album, 2010
3.80 | 257 ratings

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A Child In The Mirror
Ciccada Eclectic Prog

Review by Menswear
Prog Reviewer

4 stars Summer in Greece

What's not to like here? Brightness and darkness alternating to create a bright, yet sometimes stormy canvas. A recipe well written by Anglagard, Gryphon and Gentle Giant and Ciccada took good notes. A fresh, pastoral and estival blend of 3 of my favorite bands of all time; a delicious banquet of folk-rock that should interest those liking medieval/renaissance moods.

It's way (like WAY) above your average stuff, especially for a first delivery. The amount of skills needed to play something that remotely resembles Gryphon is very high. That alone is a feat in itself, I swear we hear seasoned, old bearded proggers of another era. Tasty flute, crytalline singing, wise use of piano and mellotron (meaning just the right dose), Rickenbacker bass and skillful acoustic guitar-a-plenty. At the risk of repeating myself: light, darkness, petals and storms. Impressive.

Damn, feels like vacation in Thassos!

 The Finest Of Miracles by CICCADA album cover Studio Album, 2015
3.91 | 276 ratings

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The Finest Of Miracles
Ciccada Eclectic Prog

Review by Muskrat

4 stars CICCADA is a Greek band that offers an exceptional mix. This formation has achieved two feats. The first is to prove that producing great progressive rock is possible in a country with no tradition in this style. The second is to revive the golden period of Italian (Quella Vecchia Loccanda) and South American (Baccamarte) progressive rock, while marrying it with the English folk-prog heritage of the seventies (Jethro Tull, Gentle Giant, Gryphon). A complex music with rich instrumentation (Rock, Brass, Wood, strings, traditional), brilliantly interpreted and perfectly recorded. Highly recommended to anyone who enjoys mixing progressive rock with folk music. No doubt, "The finest of miracles" is a great addition to any prog rock music collection. I do not put five stars because I expect a lot from their next album. I would be really annoyed if it is even better!
 A Child In The Mirror by CICCADA album cover Studio Album, 2010
3.80 | 257 ratings

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A Child In The Mirror
Ciccada Eclectic Prog

Review by kenethlevine
Special Collaborator Prog-Folk Team

3 stars With no releases since 2016 and no reviews since 2015, eclectic Greek outfit CICCADA certainly deserves a bump up, and even more so because apparently a long overdue new album is imminent. I first heard them several years back on a prog rock internet station, where the same track seemed to be on fairly steady rotation,; I think it may have been the title cut to this, their first release. Over the last few years I have returned to CICCADA with enthusiasm and some trepidation, hoping almost desperately that eventually they would "click". While I can't say that has happened, I can still heartily recommend this to most fans who enjoy a relatively complex fusion of genres, these being folk, classical, jazz, and even occasional heaviness just for variety.

Characterized by the measured and elegant Evangelia Kozoni on vocals and the multi instrumentalist Nikolas Nikolopoulos who shines on keys and flute, the album is fleshed out by a full band complement and an abounding guest list mostly on strings and winds. Kozoni sings more in the manner of the classically trained, and I can't really compare her to any better known female vocalists, as much because of this unusual quality as because she really doesn't sound like anyone I can think of. Most tunes are sung in English but grant substantial latitude for instrumental interplay. Simplicity and complexity are well balanced, and the band does favour challenging time shifts and abrupt mood changes. Too often these serve to steer me on the wayward path of the addled attention deprived. It has been noted that, apart from valid comparisons to JETHRO TULL and GENTLE GIANT, "A Child in the Mirror" calls to mind GRYPHON's acclaimed "Red Queen to Gryphon 3", but is thankfully much less clinical.

While I mostly enjoy most of the pieces here, I'm hard pressed to underscore even one number that is truly outstanding not just from a creative or arrangement standpoint but for beginning to end appeal. Still, I get paid to name names, so I choose the delicate title track, the instrumental "Storyteller's Dream" for its recorder and organ flourishes, and the pastoral "Epirus". If you listen you will probably have your own favourites that might not intersect with mine at all. That is a good quality in a recording...to a point.

As much as it is a magnificently accomplished debut, "A Child in the Mirror" suggests I have some growing up to do in musical appreciation. I hope all my teachers will be this stimulating.

 The Finest Of Miracles by CICCADA album cover Studio Album, 2015
3.91 | 276 ratings

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The Finest Of Miracles
Ciccada Eclectic Prog

Review by Windhawk
Special Collaborator Honorary Collaborator

4 stars Greek band CICCADA was formed back in 2005, with an initial core line-up consisting of Nicolas Nikolopoulos, Evangelia Kozoni and Giorgos Mouchos, supplemented by the skills of Omiros Komninos, who joined in 2009. With the aid of numerous guest musicians they recorded their debut album "A Child in the Mirror", a production that was picked up by the Italian label Altrock and released by it in 2010. "The Finest of Miracles" is their second studio recording, released through the same label in 2015.

Diversity is something of a central characteristic to be given Ciccada's second album. The foundation of their style is progressive folk rock, but with details and excursions from jazz, traditional folk music and symphonic progressive rock incorporated into the totality, alongside elements that one might describe as *chamber rock to boot (not to be confused with RIO*). A well made album on all levels, and while not as challenging as it may sound from description, the overall production merits that description due to the sheer diversity of the material. As the band cites bands such as Jethro Tull, Gentle Giant and Gryphon as sources of inspiration, those with an affection for those bands appear to be a likely key audience for this CD, and I'd suggest that those with a general affection for bands with a diverse and varied sound, style and expression to give this one a spin as well.

 The Finest Of Miracles by CICCADA album cover Studio Album, 2015
3.91 | 276 ratings

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The Finest Of Miracles
Ciccada Eclectic Prog

Review by GKR

5 stars I take time to listen to new music. Quite a long time. In fact, excepting the recent releases of old bands (the albums of Ian Anderson, Osanna, Martin Barre ... etc) and small exceptions (The Worm Ouroboros and Steven Wilson), I hardly hear anything from the 90s onwards.

Looking to catch up, and discover new sensations: BANG, Ciccada.

The first album not necessarily moved me, but the second is of a sweeping quality. The songs are exceptional, good alignment in the parts the "guests" instruments come along (like the violin and the basoon, for example), several mini epics are placed in each track - at times reminding me the best of Gryphon. Special attention, in my view, for "Eternal" and "Wandering". In the latter, where in fact the band wanders through various musical styles, sounding like King Crimson and some of Ian Anderson moments.

5 stars would be exagerated? I dont know ... I think true classics take time to actually establish themselves as classics. Achieved maturation. Like wine.

But, damn, this Greek wine is tasty!

 The Finest Of Miracles by CICCADA album cover Studio Album, 2015
3.91 | 276 ratings

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The Finest Of Miracles
Ciccada Eclectic Prog

Review by BrufordFreak
Collaborator Honorary Collaborator

4 stars It's been five years since Greece's Ciccada released their highly acclaimed debut album, A Child in the Mirror on AltrOck Records. Now they are back with an album that displays the maturation process the band has undergone in both recording and compositional technique. The songs of The Finest of Miracles show improved mastery of the band's proclivity for weaving sophisticated instrumental structures using their multiplicity of ancient and traditional folk instruments integrated with modern electrified instruments. They have also refined their symphonic sensibilities, as is displayed in the long-playing masterpieces, "Around the Fire" and the 18-minute long "The Finest of Miracles Suite." They are also much more evenly paced, eliminating the occasional tendency they had previously to over-do or flood passages with too much information.

1. "A Night Ride" (6:26) is an instrumental putting on immediate display the fact of the band's maturation as well as its further commitment to both rock music and symphonic song structures. Also on display is the multi-instrumental virtuosity of leader Nicolas Nikolopoulos who is credited with flute, tenor sax, Mellotron, synthesizers, electric and grand pianos, organ, and glockenspiel. The contributions of guest musician Lydia Boudouni on violin are also quite significant. Nice opener. (8/10) But, we're all waiting for the complete ensemble--and especially the contributions of vocalist extraordinaire, Evangelina Kozoni. The next song does not take long to satisfy.

2. "Eternal" (8:02) starts out sounding very much like A Child in the Mirror's "A Garden of Delights"--though a bit more spacious. By the middle of the song the band has started mixing things up enough and by the end of the sixth minute they have finally broken away from its predecessor: organ, acoustic guitars, flutes, Mellotron and violins. In retrospect, it feels as if it is really Evangelina's vocal melody that keeps bringing me back to "Earthly Delights," not so much the instrumental music. Still, a great song. Great sound. (8/10)

3. "At the Death of Winter" (4:04) starts out with flute, synths, Mellotron and marimba setting things up for Evangelina's storytelling vocal. The song is impressionistic: jazzy, folkie, kind of childlike and pleasant. At times it even treads into GENTLE GIANT territory--especially with the jazzy section beginning in the third and the rondo weave of male vocals accompanying Evangelina which soon follows during the fourth minute. Surprising and beautiful song! (9/10)

4. "Around the Fire" (9:16) is a true symphonic construction with no single section lasting more than 45 seconds and never less than 30. It opens with two wooden flutes playing together for the first 30 seconds. Multiple tracks of acoustic guitars fill the next 30 seconds before an all-out acoustic JETHRO TULL instrumental weave bursts out. This is then joined by organ and Evangelina's vocal. Next there is a brief instrumental of medieval instruments before the music returns to the JTULL theme with electric guitar and flute flashing in and out in an enthusiastic dance. Next Evangelina returns with the organ before the song quiets down to the medieval instrument section this time with Evangelina's voice. It sounds like a 1960s folk songs with its strummed acoustic guitars and background vocal harmonies. Gorgeous! At the five minute mark we get to hear two electric guitar soli before the song devolves into a rapidly strumming acoustic guitar. Then, at 6:30 we get to hear some impassioned JTULL flute and guitar soli, building into a heavier JTULL crescendo before returning tho the 60s folk section with the addition of Mellotron and GENESIS-like guitars to exit. Amazing song! (10/10)

5. "Lemnos (Lover Dancer)" 0:47) is a song in the true medieval folk minstrel tradition. Plus horns! (10/10)

THE FINEST OF MIRACLES SUITE:

6. "Birth of the Lights" (1:52) opens surprisingly heavily, with and odd time signature, before evolving into a softer and lighter "sunshine and unicorns" mood. (9/10)

7. "Wandering" (6:42) opens sounding a lot like very early GENESIS. Sax with background violin and piano are interspersed with the "mischievous" "interruptions" of flute A weave of multiple synths ensues before the song returns to the sax and violin weave, this time interlaced with slightly heavier sections?one of which has some raunchy jazz guitars. The song always comes back to either the sax and violin theme and/or the flutes over acoustic guitars for its grounding. This is very much a soundtrack for a film--like an old silent film soundtrack--one in which five or six very distinct personalities are interacting and/or conversing. (9/10)

8. "Sirens Call" (1:38) starts with simple acoustic guitar arpeggios joined by flute and then double bass and Rhodes piano. Violin and flute trade soli throughout. (9/10)

9. "As Fall the Leaves" (3:09) is a medieval folk ensemble set up for Evangelina to sing in her native Greek. Very RENAISSANCE like. (10/10)

10. "Song for an Island" (4:47) sees the suite step into the electronic era with trumpets and Mike Oldfield-like lead guitar with Evangelina continuing singing in Greek. The music has the feel of an early bluesy JETHRO TULL or GENESIS song. Horns join in at 1:10, adding something special before the song returns to the opening vocal section. In the fourth minute it takes a turn into new territory--a kind of "MacArthur Park" sound and structure. At 4:30 a circus-like element is introduced--which carries us through to the end! (9/10)

Amazing composition pulled off with such skill and maturity! Awesome!

This album has an amazing 1970s feel to it in the way it is composed and performed; such mastery and maturity is rare in this day and age. Always a sucker for medieval and folk traditions, this album has bewitched me--much more than even their debut--to which I also ascribed five stars.

 The Finest Of Miracles by CICCADA album cover Studio Album, 2015
3.91 | 276 ratings

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The Finest Of Miracles
Ciccada Eclectic Prog

Review by below zero

5 stars A group from a small country with no tradition in progressive music seems to know the way to sound like a classic band. Groups such as the "Afrodites child" is certainly an exception. The musical form of "The finest of miracles" have a prototype that does not depart from the authentic sound of progressive sound. I especially enjoyed the keyboard and flute.The guitar work is excellent here, especially in the guitar solos.The drum and percussion sounds very well-balanced with increased tensions the right time. Certainly the group has makes a clear progress compared with the first album "A child in the mirror". I enjoyed it very much. Five stars.

 The Finest Of Miracles by CICCADA album cover Studio Album, 2015
3.91 | 276 ratings

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The Finest Of Miracles
Ciccada Eclectic Prog

Review by The Jester

4 stars Review #15 Ciccada is one of the most talented and promising bands in Greece right now. (In my opinion at least). I discovered them a few years ago, when they released their first album 'A Child in the Mirror'. While I was listening to that album I was surprised by their rather unique sound (for the Greek standards at least), which combines many different elements such as Folk, Jazz and Progressive Rock, just to name a few.

A couple of months ago, Ciccada released their second album 'The Finest of Moments', which is better than their first one in everything. Better compositions, more "mature" sound, and a lot of guest musicians playing a huge variety of instruments, giving their music a beautiful "color". (I had the chance to meet the drummer Giannis Iliakis, and the mastermind behind the band Nikos Nikolopoulos, and I have to say that they are cool and interesting guys, but above all very good musicians).

As for the album, it includes 10 tracks and has a total running time of almost 45 minutes. There are 3 small tracks included, which can be characterised as "passages" between songs, and they are under 2.00 minutes long. All the rest are between 3.00 and 9.00 minutes in length.

The album's opening track is the dreamy instrumental 'A Night Ride' having as leading instruments the keyboards and the violin at the start, but there are more instuments added later on, such as the flute and guitar. Definitely one of the best songs here. With the second track 'Eternal' the band is presenting to the listeners their female singer Evangelia Kozoni, with the soft and beautiful voice. As for their influences, most probably are bands like: Gentle Giant, Jethro Tull, Camel etc, but you can't say that Ciccada are a "copy" of those bands. They have some elements from those bands in their music, yes, but they are combined in such a way that the final outcome sounds very personal. At the moment I got the album's in MP3 version, waiting for the release of the vinyl version which will probably come out in May.

I strongly recommend the album to those who can enjoy and appreciate an album with "dreamy" passages, beautiful melodies, and on many occasions complex compositions.

4 stars from me

Thanks to clarke2001 for the artist addition. and to NotAProghead for the last updates

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