In 2023, Release Athens and SNF Nostos from the Stavros Niarchos Foundation (SNF) are joining forces to present three unique days of concerts on two stages.
On Friday, June 23 the legendary Siouxsie will take the stage at Plateia Nerou to remind us why she is considered one of the most influential artists of the last few decades. Alongside her, the greatest band - after The Beatles - to come out of Liverpool, the iconic Echo & The Bunnymen and the leading figures on the electro-pop scene, Ladytron. In Trance 95, the dark wave pioneers of the local dark wave scene, will be the opening act.
Headliners at the Stavros Niarchos Foundation Cultural Center (SNFCC) Great Lawn will be the wonderful Interpol, the band that in the early aughts shook up the New York scene and the entire music world, bringing back the post-punk sound with a modern twist. With them, we’ll have the chance to enjoy one of the most exciting post punk bands of our days, the Swedish Viagra Boys and one of the best newcomers of the European indie pop/rock scene, The Haunted Youth.
Siouxsie began her career in 1976 and over the next few years she would release a series of albums (with the Banshees, the Creatures, and solo) that were groundbreaking, highly influential, and successful.
What was clear from early on was that Siouxsie's influence was not limited to her great music, as her presence—a beguiling mixture of aggression, power, and strange fragility—became as iconic as that of Bowie's Ziggy Stardust. Her catalogue of music is full of outstanding albums but at the same time, her image and personality have contributed to her being considered the ultimate idol for generations of artists and music fans.
Her debut solo album, Mantaray, was released in 2007 and in 2008 she performed with Angelo Badalamenti at the World Soundtrack awards. In 2013, she performed two sold-out shows at London's Royal Festival Hall as part of Yoko Ono's Meltdown. Siouxsie, never one for being predictable, surprised the dazzled the 5,000 attendees with an unannounced complete and full rendition of Siouxsie and the Banshees’ 1980s Kaleidoscope album, alongside a myriad of hits from “Face to Face” to “Here Comes That Day.”
A few years later, in 2015, she recorded "Love Crime," the haunting track that closes the final episode of the TV series Hannibal. It was something that made national news in the UK, reminding us that, despite her illustrious career, little is known about who Siouxsie Sioux really is, a rarity for an artist who has been under the spotlight for four decades, probably because Siouxsie does exactly what she wants—something that hasn't changed to this day.
Interpol were formed in 1997 in New York City and were an important part of the music boom the city experienced in the early 2000s, with bands like the Strokes, Yeah Yeah Yeahs, and TV On The Radio, among many others. Their sound follows the post-punk tradition of the ‘80s and British bands like The Smiths, Joy Division, The Chameleons, and Echo and the Bunnymen, but at the same time, thanks to Daniel Kessler's razor-sharp guitars, the solid rhythm section, and Paul Banks's distinctive voice, they created a personal style that would become the template that would inspire numerous imitators in the years to come.
Across their debut Turn On The Bright Lights (2002) and the follow-up Antics (2004), you’ll find some of the top and most distinctive songs of the aughts (“Untitled,” “Say Hello To The Angels,” “Obstacle 1,” “NYC,” “Evil,” “C'mere,” etc.) while Our Love to Admire (2007) became a great commercial success and earned them a cult following. In the next few years, Interpol would become a trio and release three more albums full of brilliant songs like “Lights,” “All The Rage Back Home,” and “If You Really Love Nothing.”
Currently, they seem to be reaching another peak in their career as last year's album, The Other Side of Make-Believe, confirms that Interpol is one of the most unique, consistent, and timeless rock bands of the 21st century.
Echo & The Bunnymen were formed in 1978, having their love for New York’s punk and the psychedelia of bands like the 13th Floor Elevators and The Doors, as their main source of inspiration. Driven by the mesmerizing voice and outsized persona of singer Ian McCulloch and the undeniable talent of Will Sergeant on guitar, the band made music history in the 80s, by releasing an extraordinary quartet of records, the now legendary "Crocodiles" (1980), "Heaven Up Here" (1981), "Porcupine" (1983) and "Ocean Rain" (1984) that, not only earned them die-hard fans but also pushed them, from the beginning, beyond the confines of the UK’s post punk scene.
Over the next few decades, the band would enjoy critical acclaim as well as commercial success, non-stop airplay on the radio (from the iconic John Peel, who invited them six times on his show, to the most mainstream stations), experience tragedy (such as the death of their amazing drummer, Pete de Freitas), and line-up changes, but in the end they would find a way to continue to this day, as McCulloch and Sergeant have cemented a musical bond that cracked but never shattered, over the course of a lengthy career, that never stopped treating us with great songs.
The Viagra Boys are not your typical post punk band. They are a raw sextet, comprised of classically trained jazz musicians, seasoned hardcore punk veterans and tattoo artists, who managed in five years to sweep everything in their path: they have released three albums, played countless, chaotic gigs and injected post punk a breath of fresh air, thanks to their satire and inventive compositions that seem to define the rock music of our time.
Since they formed in 2015, Viagra Boys have been releasing some of the most groundbreaking sounds the genre of post punk has heard in recent memory. Starting with their debut EP, "Consistency of Energy" (2016), the band has been building a fan base of frantic fans who can't resist their hectic rhythms and, of course, the exhilarating Sebastian Murphy, a charismatic frontman who seems to have emerged from the same mold that birthed the great Iggy Pop. In 2022, after the release of the stunning "Cave World", they experienced acclaim and established themselves as one of the most important music acts in the business.
Originating in Liverpool, Ladytron, made up of Helen Marnie, Daniel Hunt, Mira Aroyo and Reuben Wu, earned two decades of acclaim by relentlessly pushing boundaries, carving out new sonic space by refusing to abide by formula or trend.
At the beginning they were known for shows in unconventional venues and placed emphasis on countries and cities other than their own. Thus, the Ladytron’s international recognition quickly grew by playing shows in countries where few artists went at that time. After their first three, very successful releases -604, Light & Magic, Witching Hour- they were invited to perform with artists such as Bjork, Nine Inch Nails and Brian Eno. Eno remarked in an interview, “Ladytron are, for me, the best of British pop music”.
Following an eight-year hiatus and several side projects, 2019 saw a new chapter open for Ladytron. Their eponymous sixth album was released to critical acclaim just like this year’s record, Time’s Arrow, with several standout tracks like “City of Angels” and “Faces”.
The Haunted Youth from Belgium, are the brainchild of Joachim Liebens. His beautiful songs focus on his sad, teenage years and at the very essence of being young and hopeful. His debut album, the dream-pop Dawn Of The Freak (2022), strike a chord with fans of Slowdive, The Cure, My Bloody Valentine and DIIV.
Their early singles “Coming Home”, “Gone” and “Broken” attracted attention in Belgium and The Netherlands and soon after, UK and USA followed. “Teen Rebel” become an indie anthem and was described as a song “you think you’ve known all your life, like a close friend that wrap his arms around you”, while the more recent “I Feel Like Shit And I Wanna Die” seems destined to become the next, big indie hit.
The Haunted Youth’s performance at Release Athens X SNF Nostos will mark their first visit in Greece, during an extensive tour with shows at major festivals like Rock Werchter, Pinkpop and Sziget. One thing is certain: many more will follow!
Limited VIP tickets are also available. This category includes the following benefits: a separate raised area with stands and stools for everyone, an open bar, priority of access to the venue, private parking, separate toilets, and a souvenir of the event. Kindly note that VIP ticket holders will have access to both stages, but the specially designed space offering the above benefits is available at the Water Plaza only.
For all information (prices, lineup, access, etc.), visit www.releaseathens.gr / snfnostos.org
*Ticket proceeds go exclusively to Release Athens. The Stavros Niarchos Foundation (SNF) is a philanthropic organization that makes grants to nonprofit organizations. SNF does not accept funds from private individuals, corporations, or any other organizations.
In parallel, SNF is making €500,000 in additional grants under the name SNF x Release Athens to nonprofit organizations whose mission is to support mental health, in line with the wider mental health theme of this year's SNF Nostos.