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Vangelis - Vangelis & Irene Papas: Odes CD (album) cover




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3.67 | 73 ratings

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4 stars It was the summer of 1987. I was in Agios Nikolaos (Crete) and I was looking for some music to bring at home. The shop owner, some Yannick, didn't know what he was selling. He was used to sell versions of Zorba and some sirtaki music to tourists. So I have to search on my own and digging into the exposed vinyls I recognized the Greek name of Vangelis on the sleeve covers of two albums: "Odes" and "Rapsodies", both featuring the actress and singer Irene Papas. The Greek edition that I still have reports Odes as an album by Vangelis AND Irene Papas. This should close the discussion about who has to be credited for it.

It's Vangelis' music thought for the Greek market. And Irene Papas has likely written the lyrics. The result is a great album performed by a great vocalist that's more known outside of her country for her huge qualties of actress but she's a great singer and interpreter, too.

Being thought for the local market, the album is probably the most "oriental" of Vangelis. There's a lot of Greece, it's sometimes folky but without losing the evocative side of his keyboards and the singing of Irene Papas adds a lot to the songs.

This album alternates solar and dark moments. There's also room for a Vangelis' instrumental "The Dance De Feu" (The Dance of Fire) followed by a solo singing of Irene (Les Kolokotronei). that seems a religious hymn or a prayer but to be honest I don't know what it's about. Ihave found this translation but it doesn't say much to me:

"The sun shines on the mountains; it shines on the valleys. That's how the klepht family of the Kolokotronis shines, who have the large amounts of silver, the silver swords. They don't deign to set foot on the ground. They go to church on horseback; they worship the icons on horseback; they take the sacred bread from the priest's hand on horseback."

"La Fleuve" (To Potami in my edition) is a hymn to a river, while "Miroloi" (Lament) and "Menousis" (a drunk man who kills his wife for jealousy) are other dark moments.

In the middle, "Racines" is another instrumental but deeply Greek also this.

This album is a journey to the secret soul of modern Greece. Close your eyes and watch a dry land covered by olive trees and mystic wilderness.

4 stars

octopus-4 | 4/5 |


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