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Vangelis. Very early works
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Author Vangelis. Very early works
e-grad
I don't care very much for Vangalis but know others do. I just stumbled on a interesting video featuring the Forminx. Vangalis was one of the founders of that group:

ndkent
I believe that was their biggest hit.

The video is recent and has nothing to do with the band. Anyone recognize it? I'm guessing it's from the 2004 movie "Strings", but I've not seen the film yet to be sure but the little I've seen of it looks like that/

To me, the Vangelis I really appreciate is when he got into film scores. His pop is interesting from the technique side of things and there are a bunch of songs I like, but his scores are sublime, even before he bought a single synth (l'Apocalypse des Animaux for instance).
e-grad
ndkent wrote:
I believe that was their biggest hit.

Think so, too.

ndkent wrote:
The video is recent and has nothing to do with the band. Anyone recognize it? I'm guessing it's from the 2004 movie "Strings", but I've not seen the film yet to be sure but the little I've seen of it looks like that/

I didn't expected the video to be from the 60s. Unforetunately the one who uploaded it didn't care to give any information. It was even tagged "folk"!

However, thanks for the information on Strings. Haven't been aware of this film:

emdot_ambient
I was really into Vangelis up until he went all soundtrack on us. Chariots of Fire was the start of his downfall, IMHO.

I liked his work with Aphrodite's Child and his early solo works like Earth, Albedo 0.39, Spiral, Heaven & Hell--which is the pivotal piece that drew me to synth music--Beaubourg was a great album...even his early soundtracks like L'Apocalypse des Animaux and Opéra Sauvage were OK...he also produced and played keyboards on an album called Phos by Socrates (aka Socrates Drank the Conium), which was a very good album*. Pretty much after that I lost him until Bladerunner, which seemed to catch some of his earlier inspiration.

* http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PWiPyaQV2yo
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=96zzCPVCcwc
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mAv_z_Gd50o

Damn, some nasty digital glitches in those.
MindMachine
Completely agree with the above post... Grew up on Albedo 0.39, Spiral and opera Sauvage.
I recently acquired a vinyl copy of Beaubourg and really appreciate the 'experimental' nature if it. Apparently it was recorded to fill a contract obligation???
ndkent
Some random comments. I just played Chariots the other day and it was quite enjoyable. I guess it did suffer from overexposure and was no longer a well kept "secret" but he can't be blamed. It's not like he churned out albums of cash in material. It was also quite daring that he'd score a movie so out of the time period the film was in, not that that isn't done all the time but it so very rarely works so well on many levels.

He got into electronic keyboards and then synthesizers because his musical thoughts were orchestral and spontaneous and I can definitely identify there. I can't say I'm entirely happy when the ROMpler era arrived. Before you had ROMplers analog synths didn't sound very real and you had to be more creative to make a big sound. My theory is ROMplers gave musicians the ability to do an entire sound that superficially seems good enough without much trouble or effort. There were of course a few years of samplers before and 2 decades of Mellotron but especially with the latter that was more an extra color and something you'd work with to sound cool (and something Vangelis used but wasn't thrilled with so he didn't over use it). So if your goal is just making an orchestral type sound a ROMpler is incredibly convenient because it might sound good enough right away. But that's a minus since the artist will just go on to the next piece and it won't get to a stage past good enough.

Phos isn't really my cup of tea, or conium, but I can see how someone who likes somewhat harder prog sounds with synths would find it interesting. It actually came out in the US back in the mid 70s. Vangelis did a bit of production on the side, sometimes it was outside of his contracts, sometimes uncredited and in different markets so collectors are still turning up stuff.

He seems to have made his electro-acoustic "Invisible Connections" at the end of his next contract, so fans of Beaubourg would want to check it out, though it's often a bit hard to find. Beauborg though seems to be a pair of CS-80s played live straight through each side.
emdot_ambient
ndkent wrote:
He seems to have made his electro-acoustic "Invisible Connections" at the end of his next contract, so fans of Beaubourg would want to check it out...

Forgot about IC. I have that on vinyl and remember thinking it was much in the vein of Beaubourg.

I think I heard that he did Beaubourg because he had been criticized for being too commercial and not academic enough, and as such it could almost be seen as a bit of a joke since it's almost all live recordings of CS-80 with heavy use of ring modulation (i.e., pretty easy to improvise)...but I can't substantiate that. It's probably me favorite Vangelis album right now.

Oh...if you have a copy of Klaus Schulze's Dune, you can try a mix I used to do on the radio. You start with Beaubourg Part 1, letting it run by itself for 5 minutes. Then you slowly fade in Dune for 5 minutes. Then you fade out Beaubourg over the rest of Part 1 (about 8 minutes). And finally you let Dune finish playing alone. You couldn't tell the two apart in that mix...sounded great.
essex sound lab
Thoroughly agree with emdot and MindMachine.

Albedo 0.39 was the first I heard, and while more accessible than a lot of his earlier works I found it brilliant. Spiral was in the same vain...not quite as solid but still enjoyable.

But then finding Opéra Sauvage and Heaven & Hell...they still give me the chills. Utterly magic music to me. Heavy handed, but brilliantly so.

Beaubourg is obviously something else entirely, but I hold a torch for that as well. It may have been one of the first "experimental" records I heard in my youth, but it was also so physical.

Great stuff....thanks for bringing it up!

edit: fixed typo
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