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NO MAN'S LAND

Psychedelic/Space Rock • Greece


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No Man's Land biography
NO MAN'S LAND is one of Athens, Greece's most long-lasting and active bands. This mutating musical unit started out in the mid-eighties and soon established itself as one of the highlights of the local scene, mainly due to their electrifying live shows. Their first album ''Zalion'' (1988) is a neo-psychedelic gem still much sought-after by connoisseurs. Before going into slumber, NO MAN'S LAND released the EP ''The Reality Trip'' in 1990.

After a hiatus in the nineties, NO MAN'S LAND hit the road once again, playing shows and recording new material. 2008 saw the release of ''Home in the Sky'' on the eclectic Athenian label Anazitisi Records. The immediate follow-up was a self-titled, limited edition, vinyl only album with two extended tracks. The ''Drowning Desert'', their next album, was released in 2010. Their latest is called ''Unprotected'' (2013) and consists of five medium to extended length tracks, in which the band travels the spaces between psychedelic rock, prog, and free jazz, always within the context of actual songs.

Although the changes in the band's line-up are too many to list here, Vassilis Bas ATHANASSIADES is the only member remaining from the core of the band that started back in the 80's. He is currently joined by Chris Silver TRIANTAFILOPOULOS (drums), Don FUESTENBERG (trumpet, fluegelhorn), Nick PETAVRIDES (bass) and George SIRGANIDES (flute, keyboards).

Their sound has evolved from neo-psychedelic rock to blues-rock oriented music, before returning in late 00's with a much more progressive edge incorporating instruments such as trumpets, cellos and flute to establish the present psychedelic/space rock sound. Their latest album ''Unprotected'' is a fine example of this latest 'mutation'.

Biography kindly provided by the band, edited by aapatsos

No Man's Land official website

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NO MAN'S LAND discography


Ordered by release date | Showing ratings (top albums) | Help Progarchives.com to complete the discography and add albums

NO MAN'S LAND top albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

0.00 | 0 ratings
Zalion
1988
4.00 | 1 ratings
Home in the Sky
2008
0.00 | 0 ratings
No Man's Land
2008
0.00 | 0 ratings
The Drowning Desert
2010
3.05 | 3 ratings
Unprotected
2013

NO MAN'S LAND Live Albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

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0.00 | 0 ratings
The Reality Trip
1990

NO MAN'S LAND Reviews


Showing last 10 reviews only
 Unprotected by NO MAN'S LAND album cover Studio Album, 2013
3.05 | 3 ratings

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Unprotected
No Man's Land Psychedelic/Space Rock

Review by aapatsos
Special Collaborator Prog Metal and Heavy Prog Teams

3 stars I discovered No Man's Land with this album and it made me look back to their discography, which shows a natural progression from psych/blues to more abstract and long compositions, improvisation and experimentation with intriguing instruments.

'Unprotected' seems to pick up from their previous release in the sense that the compositions tend to be long, filled with improvisation and dominated with the distinct character of brass instruments. The mood of the album interestingly varies between 'bright' and darker atmospheres, but constantly breeding the feeling of a "live-studio" album that would sound exactly the same if witnessed on stage.

The instrumental Moribundo part II kicks off quite reservedly, with a delay-effect on the guitars and leaving the ''brasses'' to take the lead. Even though the track generally flows in a "relaxed" atmosphere, the percussion is intriguing and after a couple of minutes the flute delivers a stunning solo that reminds me of Ozric Tentacles. The continuation builds on a bluesy guitar solo which in turn is handing over to psych-voices and various instruments taking over in turns until the closing in pure improvisation fashion.

One cannot disregard the similarity of the main theme of Flame with Pink Floyd's 'Set the Controls for the Heart of the Sun', showing the band's deep psychedelic roots, ''daring'' to clock at more than 13 mins. Low-tone, mellow vocals, quirky flute and cello (!) passages render this track dark and brooding, while after turning into an instrumental after ~5 minutes, the vocals re-appear towards the end to finish off with a nice melodic refrain.

Slightly heavier, A Brave Face starts of with a catchy bass line and distorted backing guitars passage interchanging for the majority of its duration with a main theme based on a flute melody and a funky/psych clean guitar. The middle part is yet again left for experimentation with the flute and guitar taking turns.

The only short track on the album is Permian Vacation, led by a heavy, mid-tempo, guitar/flute psychedelic riff and a beautiful, natural simplicity in its approach that makes it the most accessible tune on the album. The harmonies on the guitars work perfectly and the multiple layers of instruments towards the end supply the finishing touch to this rocking taster.

Unprotected in the World is possibly the proggiest and most complete track in terms of composition. It picks up straight from the end of 'Permian Vacation' but this time the main theme glows a distinct Greek character (reminiscent of Dionysis Savvopoulos) and Vassilis sings in a manner that brings Caravan in mind, mixing influences from a wider prog spectrum.

Under the dominant psychedelic rock mask of No Man's Land, one can distinguish influences from legendary blues/rock/prog bands (e.g. Socrates on the guitars, Peloma Bokiou) and a clear tendency for experimentation and improvisation. 'Unprotected' flows on a very low tempo but quite enjoyably and gets stronger as it progresses, with the highlights being 'Permian Vacation' and 'Unprotected in the World'. With better time management, I feel that this album could have been even better, but no major weaknesses can be spotted here. Warmly recommended to (and potentially much more appreciated by) fans of psychedelic rock looking for something different and unrestrained with regards to expression.

3.5 stars deserved.

Originally compiled for www.justincaseradio.com

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