CULTURE

A little bit of everything for all

There’s a little bit of everything on offer for concertgoers in the Greek capital throughout the coming week. The agenda includes fiery Latin jazz straight from Havana, courtesy of Julio Barreto, a rising star on the Cuban circuit; hard rock, performed by the world-renowned Brazilian group Sepultura; more performances from the intriguing UK act the Tiger Lillies, a particular favorite on the local circuit the past couple of years which has added more dates to its extensive run of Athens shows, as well as a performance by Savina Yiannatou and her backing band, Primavera En Salonico, at the Gagarin Club, a rock-oriented venue now opening its doors to a wider variety of acts, both local and foreign. Barreto, a Cuban percussionist who began a one-week residency at the Half Note Jazz Club in Mets (17 Trivonianou, tel 210.921.3310) just ahead of last Sunday’s official end to the Carnival season, will be at the club until Thursday night. The 36-year-old musician has earned a fine reputation in music-flooded Havana. To date, he has managed to carve out a distinguishable style, backed by a fiery dispossession and a band to match. Barreto began exploring his musical talents early, at the age of 7, guided by his older brothers and two prominent musician uncles, pianist Justo Barreto Rodrigues and Alberto Barreto, a composer, who have both collaborated with noteworthy jazz artists. After taking his early practical cues from family members, Barreto turned to theory in 1983, at the National School of Art. Following graduation, he began performing alongside leading Cuban artists. In the early 1990s, Barreto toured as a member of Omar Hernandez’s Cuarto Espacio and then joined fellow Cuban Gonzalo Rubalcaba’s group for seven years of successful international touring. In 1996, Barreto formed his own group, the Julio Barreto Trio, and, soon afterward established his Julio Barreto Cuban Quartet. He has toured frequently with both. Not far from Cuba, but worlds apart in terms of musical style, Sepultura, hard rock’s premier exponent from the Latin world, will be in Athens for one show this Friday at the Rodon Club (24 Marni, tel 210.524.7427). Since emerging with a hit album in 1986, «Beneath the Remains,» the Brazilian group went on to grow into an act of international proportions. Combining metal, hardcore and punk, the Sao Paolo group gained further worldwide exposure in 1991 after reaching millions of television viewers with a performance at the Rock in Rio festival. Their album «Arise,» released that year, sold over a million copies. After serving for several years, the band’s original singer, Max Cavalera, abandoned Sepultura in the mid-1990s to form his own group, Soulfly. The outfit’s remaining three Brazilians, drummer Igor Cavalera, guitarist Andreas Kisser, and bassist Paolo Pinto, recruited an American, Derrick Green, to join the ranks. Soon after, the group, which, besides its music, is also renowned for its social commitment, organized a major festival in Sao Paolo in support of Indians in Brazil’s northeast. Fans were asked to either pay for a concert ticket or to bring along a kilogram of groceries to be donated to the natives. The band is touring with a recent new album, «Roorback,» which has rated as a worthy effort on the hard-rock circuit. Back in Athens exactly one year after a series of sold-out performances, fascinating British act the Tiger Lillies, originally booked for 10 shows this time around, has had to add more dates to cope with the extraordinary demand for tickets. Performing at the Greek capital’s recently launched Big Top Theater (Leoforos Kifissou & Petrou Ralli, Aghios Ioannis Rendi, tel 210.490.6300), the Tiger Lillies have generated considerable appeal, particularly in Greece, with a mishmash style that draws on elements from cabaret, rock, jazz, punk, blues and the theater of the absurd in an unorthodox circus act. For their live shows, the Tiger Lillies, a trio comprising singer and accordionist Martyn Jacques, double bassist Adrian Stout, and drummer Adrian Huge, are joined by a dancer-acrobat whose body’s resilience and suspenseful performance have prompted descriptions such as «snake-woman.» Also renowned for being quite different, even freaky, the aptly named punk-rock band the Misfits, which has gradually drawn an immense cult following, will be at Thessaloniki’s Mylos Club (56 Andreou Georgiou, tel 2310.551.838) this Friday and the Rodon Club in Athens the following night. Taken as either genuinely shocking or tasteless for the sake of fun, the Misfits reformed in 1996 to cash in on renewed interest after emerging in 1977 for a six-year spell. Lacking in musicianship and offering crude recorded work to fans, Misfits’ frontman Glenn Danzig possessed one of the most distinctive songwriting styles in hardcore punk. Posthumous covers of their songs performed by the likes of Metallica and Guns N’ Roses helped revive interest in the band during the late 1980s. For milder tastes, the gifted Greek vocalist Yiannatou and her refined band, Primavera En Salonico, a popular offering on the world music circuit over recent years, will perform one show at the Gagarin 205 Club in Athens (205 Liosion, tel 210.854.7600-2) on Friday.