The roots of Athens-based indie-folk-instrumental act Burgundy Grapes stretch back to 1994, when high-school buddies Alexandros Miaoulis and Alexis Papaioannou, both from Athens, merged with Melbourne born-and-raised George Kolyvas in the Greek capital after the trio was drawn together by deep friendship, artistic affinity and an inexplicable drive to make music together.
Early in 2000, Kolyvas and Miaoulis, without Papaioannou, who was forced to withdraw due to serious illness three years earlier, began a series of home recordings with help from skilled musicians such as cellist Nikos Veliotis and accordionist Yiorgos Tsiatsoulis.
The hard-to-pinpoint project, whose stylistic direction, according to the band, was never really discussed but always felt focused, had slightly deviated from its pristine acoustic roots.
Electrified textures entered the project’s sound, including electric bass, atmospheric slide guitar, and at times, various discreet yet dirty and distorted sounds.
After a brave five-year battle against leukemia, Papaioannou succumbed on April 8, 2002, at the age of 28. He is sadly missed. Early in 2005, the duo released their self-titled debut album on Athens indie label Outlandish Recordings, dedicating it to their late friend. A well-received effort, “Burgundy Grapes” featured on annual leading album lists published by local press. It was followed by the release of a limited-edition EP, “Lagero”, featuring sparser-than-usual material, on Triple Bath in February 2009.
Burgundy Grapes have completed recording their second album.