Saturday, May 26, 2007

Lyrad's Random 10

A music collection built the way mine has been, which is through a fairly indiscriminate selection of promotional material, can be very diverse but, when when it comes to things like the random 10, can also be difficult to write about. Such is the case with the selection from Greek guitarist/composer Nikos Papakostas, who I have little to no knowledge about. There is scarcely any information on him that I can locate and the CD is no help. So, what little I was able to find tells me that Papakostas is a varied composer who has worked over the last thirty years in just about every musical avenue Greece has to offer. From traditional performance to film and theater soundtracks to Vice Human, Greece's longest running heavy metal act, to board member of the Federation of International Producers and Independant Labels, Papakostas is everywhere in Greek and Balkan music. The album that "Friday Night" comes from is called Terra Humanna, a sometimes traditional album and sometimes pop album, this selection is a mixture of both. It begins with a good dance featuring guitar and bouzouki, and then degenerates into some kind of traditional/heavy metal crossover. It is all acoustic, but the soloing strategies are very much '80s metal. This tone, combined with a 7+ minute track time, makes the song somewhat dull and very self-indulgent. The rest of the album doesn't neccessarily conform to this same feeling, but "Friday Night" displays a lot of what's wrong with European popular music.

1. Nikos Papakostas--Friday Night
2. Marc Ribot--I'm Confessing (that I Love You)
3. Bill Monroe--Ashland Breakdown
4. Handsome Boy Modeling School--Metaphysical
5. The Butthole Surfers--The Annoying Song
6. New York Dolls--Give Her a Great Big Kiss
7. Ennio Morricone--Rag Nuziale [from the Trio Infernale soundtrack]
8. Doc Watson & Clarence Ashley--My Home's Across the Blue Ridge Mountains
9. Bruno Nicolai--Il Mercenario (Reprise) [from the Il Mercenario soundtrack]
10. Motorhead--On Parole