A cold winter's night in the capital is not the most likely destination one would expect to hear Ancient Greek-inspired folk music but that is the order of the night at the Garage today where Daemonia Nymphe's first performance of the year will commence. Formed in 1994 by Spyos Giasafakis and Evi Stergiou in Athens, the band is now situated in London, which affords the capital's residents a rare opportunity to glimpse them live.
Support comes from Italy's Spiritual Front who fuse a range of music styles together to create a rare and colourful take on guitar-based music. Lazily termed 'neofolk', the Rome quartet have gentle rock at their core with sprinkled pop sentiments and a lashing of subtle gothic-edge audio darkness. Folk, classical, cabaret and tango are other genres launched into their melting pot, producing a colourful sound with velveteen male vocals. The entire affair comes across as experimental rather than cartoonish and hits the right notes to lift the venue's collective spirit. The crowd certainly enjoys this upbeat affair and a promise to return in October results in the audience cheering even stronger.
One by one, each of the Daemonia Nymphe's musicians take their place on the stage to the audience's celebration. Proceedings are initially slow as a technical issue with a guitar impedes the group but this is soon corrected and the audience is treated to soaring and varied vocal melodies, traditional Greek instruments (including the lyre, varvitos and pandoura) and a preternatural sense of the ethereal all daubing the music as unique. There is a keen focus on the last album 2013's 'Psychostasia' with the haunting 'Thracian Gaia' and the striking dual-layered vocal approach against the rhythmic instrumentation of the title track being particular highlights of the evening. Older hymns are readily digested by the congregation as the ritualistic 'Daemonos', the fragile 'Sirens of Ulysses' and the comparatively animated'Dance of the Satyrs' are executed sublimely. There are also previews of two new songs aired tonight, retaining the expected Daemonia Nymphe levels of ambition and are heartily appreciated by the fans.
A Daemonia Nymphe show is a visual affair in addition to a gift to the ears. An elegant dancer is positioned at either side of the stage with movements that illustrate the captivating essence of the music. Clad in white, their spectral-like image corroborates with the otherworldly vision of the headlining act. The concert is involving and far more enthralling than the average musical performance, given the theatrical and Ancient Greek elements. The only genuine downside is the volume of disrespectful punters talking loudly (and fairly constantly) and disrupting the tender passages of the music.
Despite coming on stage late, mercifully Daemonia Nymphe are permitted a two-track encore. The audience is overwhelmed as they return to the stage for a moment longer. A repeat rendition of 'Thracian Gaia'goes down a storm and it always speaks volumes when a musicians' final song of the night is a selection from their most recent release. With such a beautiful spectacle left behind, Daemonia Nymphe should be commended for creating music inspired from their roots and managing to communicate it successfully to those with an absence of Hellenic connections.
sorry, we currently have no gigs listed for this act.