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Pete And RoyceDays Of Destruction

Label:Ocean (4) – OR 1000
Vinyl, LP, Album
Style:Prog Rock


A1It's Up To You
A2Am I Mistaken
Written-ByTsiros*, Ghinos*
A3Don't Break Down
A4Who Cares
Written-ByTsiros*, Ghinos*
B1You Make Me Feel
Backing VocalsDebborah Burdon
B2Give Me The Wings To Fly
B3Long Time Ago
DrumsL. Achladiotis
B4Passing Another Day
Written-ByTsiros*, Ghinos*
B5Days Of Destruction

Companies, etc.



Made in Greece by EMI.

Recorded at Tiffany's Studio during July and August of 1980 and in Cosmosound during February and March of 1981.

Barcode and Other Identifiers

  • Rights Society: ΑΕΠΙ
  • Other (Labels): A/A 9248
  • Other (Cover): MT. 9248
  • Other (Licence Number): 9161/475/81


tsanakas's avatar
America discovers PETE AND ROYCE!
Pete and Royce Resurface

March 31, 2014 | by Aram Yardumian | Category: Music | Leave a Comment

Suffering of Tomorrow and Days of Destruction, [Musicbazz, 2012, 2013] —


The 1970s were painful years for Athenians. Seven years of military dictatorship, brought uncertainty into the homes of all who had fought for thirty years against deep political division whose roots grew in the soil of Axis occupation and the Greek Resistance. It was a bitter time of cultural suppression and appeals to patriotism, rural simplicity, and secret torture clearinghouses. These kinds of parochial and inward looking cultural values have been argued as the doctrinaire stance of a prime minister with rural roots, a form of reactionary traditionalism, or an antidote to the Truman Doctrine and its kudzu vine of cultural imperialism. Strangely inconsistent lists of prohibited songs, films, and books—both foreign and domestic—were drawn up. Radio stations played martial music day and night. Yet while some artists found themselves censored or forced to play only folk styles, others, even Stones- and Cream-inspired blues-rock bands, somehow managed to play stadiums.

Despite the unevenness of cultural censorship during the Seven Years, local rock music scenes felt the pressure of deterrence. For, it was not only the nationalist right who attempted to douse the fire of American and Western European cultural influence. Greece’s Tito-funded far-left Communist party, the KKE, almost equaled the Colonels in cultural paranoia and anti-‘Western’ doctrine.[1] Between these dual pressures, a backlash of innovation occurred in the Greek underground scene. Exarcheia Square, a meeting place for Socialists, Freaks, and miscellaneous intellectuals, witnessed the Athens Polytechnic uprising in November 1973 (and remains a hub of Leftism to this day). In the Plaka, Rebetiko taverns were converted into rock clubs. Many mainstream artists of this era hung up their bouzoukis in favor of electric guitar and keyboard sound inspired by Dylan, Zappa, King Crimson, and Genesis. Those who were there remember the creativity was as limitless as the conservative Greek society’s condemnation of it, which in turn inspired more and more implacably magical music and poetry. Record labels, although not strictly forbidden by law to release ‘European’-sounding albums did, however, practice self-censorship out of commercial trepidation. Rebetiko and pop sold. Who would pay for the seeds of flowers yet to blossom? And so much joy and loss, so much rage and brilliance was never documented at all.

P&R 1

Two of the very few LPs recorded in those days have finally resurfaced. Pete & Royce, a band which spent it entire short life in Athens, was founded in 1978 or 9 by Panagiotis “Pete” Tsiros, an icon painter and guitar player from Kifisia, and synth-player Vassilis Ghinos, who would also be responsible for musical arrangements. In 1980, joined by Lavrentis Tsinaroglou, Ilias Porfiris, Christos Zorbas, and backed on some tracks by Apocalypsis, they home-recorded what would become Greece’s very first self-released record, Suffering of Tomorrow for Nick Georgoussis’ independent label, Oktohxos. Later that year and during the following year they returned, this time to Tiffany’s Studio, to record Days of Destruction, a more mainstream hard rock follow-up for a mysterious Greek label called Ocean. Critical acclaim at the time was reserved[2], but both albums capture the haunted and turbulent spirit of the era, as well as express very personal artistic visions. Pete commanded artistic direction of the band, and so it evolved very much according to his own stylistic evolution from prog-psychedelia to hard rock and finally, on a third and unreleased album, to funk-rock. According to Christos Tsanakas, these three stylistic phases culminate in the demos for the third unreleased album.[3]

Flowers, Pete & Royce Suffering of Tomorrow, 1980

Suffering of Tomorrow is a concept album about death and decay, a poetic summation of inevitability, and the dissolution of all that we believe is permanent. It moves through an elegiac tunnel, with great generosity and even moments which feel like recompense to an unknown second-person. And indeed, the album is dedicated, obliquely, to Tsiros’ brother, who had died. Is it Pete’s brother whose face he sees on the moon and round whose grave he wends his guitarwork? But rather than a constantly dismayed optimism, the musical force is a pessimism designed to negate destructive forces, to exact a transformation of grief and despair. And for that, it succeeds in finding a warmth, maybe even an idealism beyond personal and political turbulence. Each of Suffering of Tomorrow’s six (really, eight) tracks features long, complex passages, parts of which seem as if they could be from a lost Pink Floyd album recorded sometime between Ummagumma and Obscured By Clouds, or a lost sister to the Anglo-prog sound of Cressida—one of the highest compliments one can pay, especially when we have no idea whether these albums were available to Pete and Vassilis. Other, more superficial touchstones might include Dom’s Edge of Time, and to a lesser extent the Swedish festival bands of the same era, such as Älgarnas Trädgård and Harvester. Though the occasional Anatolian guitar or organ flourish roils through, the sound of Suffering of Tomorrow is distinctly un-Greek, unashamedly pan-European, and as such holds very little in common with Costa Tournas, Akritas, Aphrodite’s Child, and others who recorded for Greek Polydor. No less psychedelic or progressive than any of these, though perhaps more dystopian and pure, pure in the sense that Pete & Royce despised the phoniness and artistic compromise of their contemporaries who found shortcuts through the political haze to acceptability and stardom. And though not religious in any way, Suffering of Tomorrow is really a liturgical album with a rock structure; liturgical in the sense of leitourgía, a personal existential burden and public offering, the making manifest an unseen reality in its analog-electronic shifts, energetic guitar and organ lines that really search the air for something that has been lost, and reciprocally, offer something that has been found.

Daysof Destruction_1

The title Days of Destruction clearly refers to this period of Greek political history, and at least three of the songs directly confront the political realities of Athens in 1981. “Passing Another Day” is a bittersweet ode to the impotence of inaction, frustrating but also full of mirth for the aesthetics of lost time, while “Dream” and the title track are concessions to the personal defeat felt by many young men in those days. It is an uneven album, not without the wistful late-night meandering of Suffering of Tomorrow, but less crepuscular and mysterious, more song-oriented and less of a sprawling concept album, more rollicking, and even less optimistic. The dedication to artistic purity so deeply felt in Suffering of Tomorrow seems more hung out. As a result, although the songs are distinctive, it is a less original album, a more ecumenical effort, whose finest qualities are still those of many prog albums of the era: an existential ache whose resolutions, and irresolution, you chart less formally and more in terms of poetics. In spite of this, these songs could not have been recorded in any other place or time. Days of Destruction is a rock album, raw and expressly amateurish, so much to say and no statements to make. Or perhaps the most salient form of political protest was to create something apolitical, something un-stereotypically Greek, to chase artistic purity and lyrical freedoms, rather than consciously protest anything.

Days of Destruction, Pete & Royce, Days of Destruction, 1981

The two albums by Pete & Royce are devoid of pretense, devoid of exercise, and entirely self-guided progressive blossoms from a tree now long chopped down to its stump. The core band members, by the mid-1980s, had gone their own ways, and only Vassilis stayed active in music. Attempts to contact them have been made, but as yet no sustained correspondence has been reached, and so the many mysteries of these two albums felt likely to remain until recently, against all odds, the albums were reissued, both on a single CD, and Suffering of Tomorrow as an LP, by Christos Tsanakas’ label Musicbazz. Extra demo tracks are also available at his Bandcamp site. Maybe the blood spilled by Cronus did not all fall into the sea!