Stress
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Stress were formed in 1980 at Argyroulopi, Athens-Greece, and they constituted the first Greek punk band with anti-authoritarian lyrics written in Greek. The 16 year old boys’ first live performance was given in the same year at Chalkida, Greece, during an excursion organized by the Technical Lyceum of Argyroupoli.
The first line-up of the band was: Luis Kondoulis (guitar, vocals), Kostas ‘Kon’ Drivas (bass, vocals) and Johnny Kafadaris (drums, vocals). Under this line-up Stress wrote their first song entitled “Athens Burning”, and it was influenced by the 1980’s severe occurrences that took place in Athens during the celebrations regarding the 6 years from the Greek military Junta’s fall.

 
After a while, Fragiskos ‘Frank’ Ninos (vocals) joined the band and in February 13, 1982 Stress as well as the Greeks ‘Guilotine’ and ‘Ausschwitss’ participated in the first punk festival that took place at “Aretoussa” club at Plaka, Greece. Two months later, they went in for the second punk festival, this time with the bands ‘Anypofori’ and ‘Ex-Humans’. However, the much of havoc that was made to “Aretoussa” and the amount of arrests during the festival caused the club’s decisive closing down.
In 1983 Stress appeared in many live performances with several well known Greek groups and artists of that time, like ‘Eskoulapious’, ‘Birth Ward’, ‘Captain Nefos’, Paylos Sidiropoulos and others; their line-up however, had slightly changed as three additional members entered the group: Ilias Mitsakis, Vassilis ‘Billy Lod’ Palaiokostas (keyboards–ex Parthenogenesis) and Andreas Giatrakos. Later on, ‘Billy Lod’ withdrew the band to go to Paris, so as Frank to form ‘Panx Romana’. Tom Bouzianis (guitar, vocals, ex Parthenogenesis) replaced Frank, while he attached a new musical style to Stress that was closer to a more “surf-punk-garage-rock” rather than that of pure punk. Many live performances followed at Argyroupoli and near areas, at clubs like “Sofita”, “Skylamp”, “Paranoid”, “Kyttaro”, as well as at several lyceums, universities and cinemas’ auditorium with bands like ‘Ex-Humans’, ‘Birth Ward’, ‘Chaos Generation’, ‘Anypofori’, ‘Anti...’ and others.
At the end of 1983 Stress were: Kostas ‘Kon’ Drivas (bass, vocals), Luis Kondoulis (guitar, vocals) and Nick ‘Camel’ Chronopoulos (drums, vocals). During that period they recorded their second demo, a cassette which included the songs “Athens Burning”, “Chafies” (Nark), “Stratiotis” (Soldier), “Indian”, “Skepsou Prin Einai Arga” (Think before It’s too Late), “Anchos” (Strain) and “Perithoriakos” (Marginal). This demo was circulated by the English independent record company ‘X-Drix’ in North Europe and Scandinavia, in cooperation with the Greek vinyl record store ‘Art Nouveau’ of Nikos Kontogouris.
In 1984 they participated in the compilation entitled ‘Diataraxi Koinis Isichias’ with two songs, “Dikaioma sti zoi” (Right to Life) and “Anchos” (Strain), both recorded within two hours at the Studio 111. Their line-up was Luis Kondoulis (guitar), Kostas ‘Kon’ Drivas (bass), John Karydis (drums) and John Papakostas (vocals).
At the end of 1984, Nick Chronopoulos returned on drums, while the vocalist John Sialakis, who wasn’t however, a new member but participated earlier in group’s several arrangements, joined Stress. Under this line-up and having new songs, Stress and other groups like ‘Adieksodo', ‘Anti…’, ‘Enallaktiki Lyssi 3’, ‘Panx Romana’ and more, started a new circle of live performances with a major tour in Patra by train, within the context of a ‘social solidarity and cultural terrorism’ festival that was taking place. 
Their first complete Lp was released at the end of 1985 entitled “O Ichos tis Anasfalias” (The Sound of Insecurity), included 11 tracks and recorded at the ‘Mini Farm’ Studio. This full length Lp constituted the first independent punk production in Greece, it was released in 300 copies and the distribution was basically succeeded within the concerts’ area as well as in several anti-authoritarian haunts. After a while, however, Stress were split-up.
In 1987, their solitary Lp was re-released by ‘Wipe Out’ Records while it also comprised one extra song.
In 1988 the Greek band Antidrasi released a split-cassette that included Stress’ songs in one of its sides.
In 1992 ‘Wipe Out’ Records released the Lp “O Ichos tis Anasfalias II” (The Sound of Insecurity II), that included live recordings and Stress’ unreleased songs of the 1983-1985 period.
After the band’s split-up, Luis Kondoulis formed ‘Speedbrakes’ and later on, he played with ‘De Traces’ and ‘The Earthbound’. Nick Chronopoulos played and recorded as well, with bands like Frank’s ‘Panx Romana’, ‘Video Games’ and later on, he was involved in sound engineering and the organization of live concerts and festivals. Johnny Kafadaris played with ‘Mind Over Matter’ while Tom Bouzianis formed in 1984 the ‘X-Mandarina Duck’ and later on, he went abroad and played with different bands like ‘Passengers’, ‘Dynamite Inc’ etc., while he returned to Greece in 2005. Vassilis ‘Bill Lod’ Palaiokostas joined ‘Status In Motion’.
From 1993 to 1999 and for only few times, Stress, under their latest line up and with some additional participations of other bands’ members, performed in Athens, Patra and Agrinio, Greece, while sometimes they appeared under the name Distress. 

 

Translation by Kerry Karali.              

 
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