Praying Mantis
"Nowhere to hide"

Frontiers Records FR CD 0073 Streetdate: 25. September 2000

Praying Mantis - Nowhere to hide Tracklisting: Nowhere To Hide; Cruel Winter; The Clocktower; Can't Stop The Fire; Future Of The World; Whenever I'm Lost; You'll Never Know; River Of Hope; S.O.S.; The Man That Never Was (bonus track).

Press from Frontiers Records 21-August-00: PRAYING MANTIS started as a real band, back in 1977 when Spanish-Greek brothers TINO and CHRIS TROY, together with Mick Ranson on drums and Bob Angelo on guitar recorded a demo which received great critical acclaim in the heavy metal scene in the UK. The famous DJ NEAL KAY often played their songs and thanks to his support, three of the demo tracks were finally published in 1979 as a maxi-single entitled "The Soundhouse Tapes". Another demo song was later included in the "Metal For Muthas" compilation, the same one on which IRON MAIDEN appeared with "Wrathchild" and "Sanctuary".
Thanks to the buzz that was starting to rise around their music, PRAYING MANTIS were able to get the support slot on the first IRON MAIDEN UK tour and then later went into the studio with the new drummer Dave Potts (ex Ten Years After) and Steve Carroll on guitars and vocals. With this lineup the band released the debut album "Time Tells No Lies" which is still considered as one of the best expressions of the New Wave Of British Heavy Metal phenomenon. The song "Johnny Cool" was included on the BBC compilation "Metal Explosion" and the band were able to play at the 1981 Reading Festival in front of 15,000 people. Unfortunately, notwithstanding the great critical acclaim, "Time Tells No Lies" didn`t have much commercial fortune, therefore the band decided to add a new singer (ex GRAND PRIX and later URIAH HEEP) BERNIE SHAW and a keyboard player in order to give more depth to their sound. With this line up, Praying Mantis recorded a single "Turn The Tables" and again appeared on the bill of the Reading Festival.
A new lineup change (ex IRON MAIDEN drummer CLIVE BURR enters the band) brought later also a name change. As STRATUS, the band toured the UK and released one album called "Throwing Shapes" in 1985.
In 1990 Praying Mantis finally reformed with a new lineup featuring two further ex-IRON MAIDEN cohorts: PAUL DI'ANNO (on vocals) and DENNIS STRATTON (on guitar), with BRUCE BISLAND on drums, thanks to the interest of some Japanese promoters. They also released a live album ("Live At Last") in 1990 recorded during that tour. The success gained in the Eastern lands, convinced the band about the possibility of a reunion with the support of the PONY CANYON label and once again with a renewed lineup (the band featured in this time ex MSG singer Gary Barden and then Mark Thompson-Smith on vocals) released three studio and one live album.
In 1998 PRAYING MANTIS published (with huge critical and commercial acclaim in Japan) the "Forever In Time" album, with the new singer TONY O'HORA (also member of HORAKANE) touring once again in Japan and the UK.
The year 2000 has brought us the finest masterpiece of the Mantis career: "NOWHERE TO HIDE" which is a gorgeous cd with brilliant production and cool songwriting. A real gem shining in the melodic heavy metal panorama of today's rock music. The band will be appearing on August the 5th at the WACKEN open air festival in Germany and at the label's GODS festival in the UK during November.

Line up:
Tony O'Hora - vocals.
Dennis Stratton - guitars, backing vocals.
Tino Troy - guitars, keyboards, backing vocals.
Chris Troy - bass, keyboards, backing vocals.
Bruce Bisland - drums, backing vocals.

Official album discography: "Time Tells No Lies" (Arista, 1981); "Live At Last" (with Paul Di'Anno and Clive Burr, Pony Canyon 1990); "Predator In Disguise" (Pony Canyon, 1990); "A Cry For A New World" (Pony Canyon, 1993); "To The Power Of Ten" (Pony Canyon, 1995); "Captured Alive In Tokyo" (Pony Canyon, 1996); "Forever In Time" (Pony Canyon, 1998); "Demorabilia" (collection of unreleased demos - Pony Canyon 1999); "Nowhere To Hide" (Frontiers Records).

© Steen Peitersen 2000