CULTURE

Rodon regular bids it farewell

esides his music and accompanying musicians, the groundbreaking local electronica act Constantinos Beta will likely carry loads of nostalgia and a touch of sadness this Thursday night when he performs his final show there just days before the venue’s closing later this month. The Melbourne-born Beta – who emerged from nowhere as the frontman of his innovative, inspired and ultimately very successful Athens-based band Stereo Nova in the early ’90s – has performed countless shows at the venue, both with his group and as a solo act. «The Rodon club was the first big stage Stereo Nova ever played on. I remember our first ever show there, during the ‘Diskolata’ [second album, 1993] period. We played both albums and they just wouldn’t let us go. We then launched all our new albums released between ’93 and ’95 at the Rodon club, and, from ’99 onward, I’ve presented all my solo albums there,» said Beta in a recent interview released by the club’s PR manager, focused mostly on the artist’s thoughts about the club’s closure. Following 17 years of business as a concert venue, the Rodon club’s current lease contract is set to expire. The owner’s future plans remain unknown. Organizers said Beta’s grand finale at the Rodon will be filmed by a five-camera crew for an imminent DVD release. Like thousands of music-loving Athenians, Beta had initially become acquainted with the club as a concertgoer before eventually taking the stage himself. «I was at the Rodon’s first show when the club opened up in the mid-’80s, and, as I lived close by, got to see all the best shows there,» recalled the artist, whose own music and starkly honest lyrics went on to affect the lives of numerous devoted fans here. «My favorites were Siouxsie and the Banshees, Tricky, Greg Sage, Morrissey – I played three songs as the support act with Vaios [Mahmoudes, his current keyboardist] – Chris Isaak, the Wipers, and other groups of the ’80s,» he added. Considering the sense of attachment developed by his extensive past at the club, on and off the stage, Beta admitted that performing – and, probably, just being at the venue – one final time would prove unsettling. «To be honest, the club’s closure is upsetting. I’ve experienced so much there – seen shows as a youngster and, later on, ended up playing myself. Quite miraculous,» said Beta, who plans to perform a career-spanning set, including Stereo Nova material which he has tended to avoid performing as a solo act. «My last show at the Rodon club? I think it’s going to bring tears to my eyes.»