4 Songs, 28 Minutes

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About Lena Platonos

Pianist, composer, and vocalist Lena Platonos is a pioneer of the Greek electronic music scene, with over a dozen albums and numerous music videos dating back to the early '80s. She was responsible for some of the first Greek pop recordings to primarily utilize synthesizers, and her otherworldly songs combined minimalist electronic soundscapes with poetic, surrealist lyrics about relationships, dreams, and the societies of the future. A piano player since childhood, Platonos played in band called DNA during the '70s and composed music for popular Greek children's radio program Lilipoupoli during the second half of the decade. In 1981, she collaborated with Marianina Kriezi and Savina Yannatou for an innovative electronic album titled Sabotage, released by the Greek label Lyra. This was followed by an album of Kostas Karyotakis poems set to music and an LP of Manos Hadjidakis compositions, both also in collaboration with Yannatou. Platonos made her solo debut in 1984 with Sun Masks, followed by Gallop (1985) and Lepidoptera (1986), which included lyrics based on nursery rhymes by Giani Rontari. An adaptation of Hans Christian Andersen's The Emperor's Nightingale appeared in 1989.

Following collaborations with Dionysis Savvopoulos and Dimitra Galani during the early '90s, Platonos retreated from the public for most of the decade, returning in 1997 with another collaboration with Yannatou, this time interpreting traditional love songs with orchestral arrangements. An album called The Mixer also appeared that year, featuring Greek electronic artists interpreting her work in styles ranging from trip-hop to drum'n'bass. Platonos' 2000 album The Third Door (in collaboration with Maria Farantouri) was based on poetry by Thodoros Poala, and the album was adapted into a stage production, which took place at the Athens Concert Hall in March of 2003. Platonos returned to electronic music in 2008 with Imerologia, which spawned two hit singles. The double CD Live at the Palace followed in 2010, and 13 Songs, a collaboration with John Bonito interpreting the poetry of Constantine Cavafy, arrived in 2011. Fans of vintage new wave and synth pop eventually began to discover Platonos' work from the '80s, and one of her songs appeared on the 2012 compilation Into the Light: A Journey into Greek Electronic Music, Classics & Rarities. Three years later, American label Dark Entries reissued Gallop on vinyl, and an EP of remixes by Israeli techno duo Red Axes was issued by the label in 2016. By the end of the year, the label also reissued Sun Masks. ~ Paul Simpson

HOMETOWN
Heraklion, Crete, Greece
BORN
October 21, 1951

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