Evripidis and his Tragedies Neos Cosmos
- 28th March 2022
Staff PickView All Staff Picks
- LP - black vinyl
While trying to think of a title for his fifth album, Evripidis, eyes on the floor, glimpsed the words Neos Kosmos, printed on a crumbled paper receipt from a pharmacy in his hometown Athens.These two words on a mundane scrap of everyday life seemed like a sign, resonating perfectly with the artistic process behind the record, as well as its content.
Neos Kosmos, written and recorded in the course of half a decade, maps Evripidis’ particular bittersweet vision of a New World on a personal, artistic but also global level, characterised by intense contradictions. His stories intertwine tragedy with the joy of living and are delivered with a new, synthetic sound that breaks away from Evripidis’ former, multi-instrumental musical adventures but still bears all the trademark melodic, harmonic and structural unexpected turns, plus the evidence of his great love for the pop music of the past six decades.
The record opens with Girlfriend, a song that feels like a love letter to a female (or a queer) friend acknowledging their utter importance in the narrator’s life, and also as a catching up point, from where Evripidis starts spinning his web of tales. The Reason juxtaposes a menacing world situation to a blissful, domestic, sheltered life, albeit a fragile one. Your Dreams is pure longing for change, a kind of your-future-self-calling-your-younger-self situation, a call to arms declaring that it is never too late to start all over again. Wild Reeds dives deep into an ideal, young, sexy but also confused state of mind and life while echoing Evripidis’ favourite coming-of-age homonymous movie by André Téchiné. Matthew narrates a bright lights, big city romance that is doomed to fail from the start, since both partners are too broken to make it last. Nos Volvimos a Encontrar is a ghost story and a reminder that grief is more bearable when we don’t stop connecting with those who parted. Bitter promises, half sarcastically and half hopefully, to never give up on love or at least its elusive promise. Kanonikotita denounces how so-called ‘Normality” can be an oppressive tool that crushes lives. It is written in Evripidis’ mother tongue, Greek, to emphasise his anger with Greece’s conservative and Church-dominated society. Melancholia takes the never ending struggle with queer trauma, anxiety and depression to galactic proportions, paying tribute to Lars Von Trier’s eponymous movie and underlying the importance of human relationships through an empowering Greek tragedy-like choir. Closing track The Back of His Neck serves as comic relief and a happy ending, being an ode to the healing, nurturing power of love, human touch and sleep. After chasing one’s dreams in the streets, one finds peace chasing sleep on the curve of a nape.
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