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Aphrodite's Child 

The rock group Aphrodite's Child began in Greece in the sixties. Bass-player and singer Demis Roussos was a member of The Idols and We Five, while keyboardest Vangelis Papathanassiou was a member of The Forminx who had several hits in Athens in 1964 and 1965, playing British invasion influenced rock. In 1968 during the dictatorship, Vangelis, Demis and drummer Lucas Sideras left Greece for England, where being a rock band is less oppressive. They don't even get in the country due to problems with work permits and end up in Paris. It works out for them. The band puts out an album and several of the songs rise to #1 on the French charts. It seems everything they touch turns to gold and each release becomes a hit. In 1970 they begin their most ambitious work, a double album based on the Book of Revelations called 666. The record company is horrified by the contents, in particular a song in which actress Irini Pappas simulates (or maybe it's not simulated) masturbation. Vangelis refuses to remove the offending track and the record company delays the album's release. By the time it eventually comes out there is no more band. The album 666, which is written by Vangelis and Kosta Ferris is considered a progressive classic and contains some truly great music. As a concept album it is a little confusing. In my opinion had the group edited it down to one record (minus Irini's orgasm and about 20 minutes of keyboard doodlings and jams)  this album would have had the same impact as Pink Floyd's Dark Side of the Moon and Aphrodite's Child might have been the progressive group of our time. As difficult as it is for some artists to believe, sometimes the record company is correct. Vangelis of course became a solo artist and producer, eventually gaining much international fame doing movie soundtracks including the film Chariots of Fire for which he got particularly high praise. He also was sued by Stavros Logarides of the seventies pop group Poll, who claimed he wrote the theme song to Chariots of Fire, which was a huge hit. Despite winning the case Vangelis reputation in Greece was tarnished as happens when an artist's biggest hit is involved in a controversy. Demis Roussos became a big star too, a sort of a eunuch crooner in robes, selling many records, and finally attaining international fame when he happens to be a passenger on a jet hi-jacked by terrorists who know his music and ask him to sing. (Answering the question of who actually listens to Demis Roussos?)

666 is  flawed but has some great songs and with today's technology it is easier to skip the bad ones so if you can find it I encourage you to buy it. Here are three songs from the album: Babylon, The 4 Horsemen and Hic and Nunc

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