Saturday, 6 March 2021

SOUTH OF NO NORTH - Fell Frozen 1986

South Of No North was one of the first true darkwave bands to emerge in Greece and consisted of Andreas (vocals), Michalis (guitars), George (bass), Fivos (drums), George (keyboard) and when Charles Bukowski wrote South Of No North, he didn’t know that an Athenian dark wave band would use his title as their band name in November 1983. They had their first gig at Grava’s High School in 1984 with the bands Metro Decay, Villa 21, Yell-O-Yell and Art Of Parties, all label-mates in Creep Records. Mostly influenced by bands such as Japan, Bauhaus and Joy Division, they covered a dark music spectre which was made obvious by their only video shot in their rehearsing studio (check “Baby Steps To A New Era, Vol.II”).

 Their gigs were very rare, considering the existing live clubs of those years, but this didn’t stop Creep Records from signing them up to release the first Greek dark wave album in history. “Lacrimae Christi”, their debut, was recorded during September 1984 and was released April 1985. New wave and dark wave took over in the Greek underground. It was easy to attend to some small gig and see the Headleaders in a bar called “Blue Note” (later called “Masswell”) near Kipseli Square, which was territorial South Of No North’s area. This bar had one of the first VCRs in Athens, playing music vids of foreign new wave bands. Punks like the band Ex-Humans were also hanging around. Actually, Fivos, Ex-Human’s drummer, was also playing with South Of No North, as well. The band used Edgar Alan Poe’s poem “Anabell Lee” for one of their songs in their second album, “Fell Frozen” (which was the last release of Creep Records). During the following years there were a few changes in their line up as two keyboard players were added, which pushed their style away from the guitar-oriented sound. In 1989 they opened for Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds at Rodon Club and released the album “South Of No North” reaching the peak of their career with their most successful song, “Sha La La”. One year later they parted ways after a concert with Last Drive and Villa 21. Their last album, a compilation called “Rajah”, was released in 1992 featuring material taken from their past albums. Rumor has it that the band had a new album recorded, which was never released. Later, some of them formed the band Rock Xerox. In 2003 they had a reunion show for the Elfentanz Festival, in Gagarin 205 Club.

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