Treading common ground again

Steven Brown is nowadays based in Mexico, Peter Principle in New York, Blaine Reininger in Athens and the Greek island of Mytilene, and Bruce Geduldig and Luc Van Lieshout in the heart of Europe, Brussels. Quite some time back, beginning in the late ’70s, these five musicians shared a common base and, together, as Tuxedomoon, created exceptionally innovative work to carve out their own niche in progressive contemporary music. History will repeat itself this Thursday night, when the members of this influential post-punk act converge for a performance at the Gagarin 205 club in Athens (205 Liosion St). The show coincides with an album of new material, «Cabin in the Sky.» The occasion marks the act’s second visit to Athens since 1997, when Tuxedomoon had reunited for a limited number of shows courtesy of band member Reininger’s close friendship with local concert promoter and film director Nikos Triandafyllidis. Besides organizing Tuxedomoon’s show in Athens seven summers ago, at the open-air Lycabettus Theater, Triandafyllidis had also documented the event on film. The mysteriously charismatic Reininger, Tuxedomoon’s violinist and guitarist, has also been cast for roles in films by Triandafyllidis, including «Radio Moscow» and a short film, «Dogs Licking My Heart,» and has composed scores for the director’s work, too. Tuxedomoon formed back in 1977 in San Francisco amid the city’s electronic music scene for what eventually turned out to be a fertile and extensive course. The group managed to forge a distinctive sound that continued to evolve, especially between the early ’80s and mid-’90s, during a period when the band was based in Europe and absorbed a diverse range of styles. Tuxedomoon’s ability to keep re-defining themselves by working with anything from classical music, jazz, funk, and new wave drew fans eager for a more experimental approach to music making. Despite the impressive body of work accumulated in the past, it is unlikely that Tuxedomoon will restrict Thursday evening’s repertoire to older material. The legendary band’s latest album, «Cabin in the Sky,» a fresh and vibrant effort, will certainly make up a significant part of Thursday’s performance. The separate courses followed by Tuxedomoon’s members following the act’s split in the mid-’90s helped the act assemble and work on a wide range of new ideas. The inclusion of local producer and electonica act Coti K, who made an impact here in the early 1990s as the producer of the worthy Athens-based electronica act Stereo Nova, has also contributed to the freshness of Tuxedomoon’s latest recorded work.

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