THE ANGELS - Darkroom Recharged Tour
Chelsea Heights Hotel (Chelsea Heights, VIC)
Friday, 3 June 2022 8:00 pm
THE SECRET IS OUT – THE ANGELS RETURN TO THE
‘No Secrets’, The Angels’ first Top 10 hit, concludes with a whispered question:
Can you please tell me what the time is?
Remarkably, it’s time for the 40 th anniversary of Darkroom, the classic Angels
album featuring ‘No Secrets’, ‘Face The Day’ and ‘Poor Baby’.
The Angels will be touring the Darkroom album in 2020, re-recording the
album, both in the studio and live. The live show will also be filmed. It’s part of
The Angels’ “Recharged” series (which has already seen the band revisit 1978’s
Face To Face, as well as this year’s 40 th anniversary celebration of No Exit).
The band will play the Darkroom album in its entirety, followed by a set of
Angels classics, some rarities and something new.
Darkroom is a record loaded with memories, for both fans and the band.
Somewhere in the dark room, there’s a sign on the door that says, “Help for
those who’ve got the urge to stray” …
Darkroom was the first album The Angels made after signing an international
recording deal with CBS. The Angels were recording ‘The Moment’ when they
heard that their friend Bon Scott – who had championed the band – had died.
And John Brewster fondly recalls Peter Garrett visiting the band and giving
them a handwritten letter, wishing them all the best for their overseas adventure.
Darkroom became the band’s highest-charting album in the US (where they
were known as Angel City), entering the Billboard charts at the end of 1980.
The album also hit number five in Australia.
Noted Australian rock biographer Murray Engleheart says ‘No Secrets’ and
‘Face The Day’ were “the most complete expression of all the alienation,
isolation and psychosis that had long been at the core of The Angels … it was
definitive, rolled-gold Angels”. ‘Face The Day’ was later covered by American
band Great White. Their version charted in the UK when released as a single in
When the Darkroom album was released in Australia, on June 16, 1980, The
Angels were the biggest band in the country. They were all over Countdown,
there was a Nightmoves special, and they even popped up in The Australian
Women’s Weekly. “For those of you faithfully dusting your Glenn Miller
records,” the magazine helpfully introduced its readers to The Angels,
“Australia’s top-drawing live band”.
Produced by the Brewster brothers, Darkroom took The Angels to the US,
where they were famously kicked off The Kinks tour “for being too good”. But
the band found some high-profile fans, including Guns N’ Roses, Cheap Trick,
Mötley Crüe and Pearl Jam.
Writing recently about the Darkroom song ‘The Moment’, Australian rock
writer Darryl Mason commented: “The Angels/Angel City played this during
sold-out theatre shows in Seattle and Portland in the early 1980s. Think it had
any influence on Grunge? There’s a half-dozen Nirvana, Soundgarden and Pearl
Jam songs that sound like evolutions of Angels songs.”
Darkroom is complete with classic characters, tales of “wasted sleepless
nights”, and unforgettable images: Amanda, the actress, with dilettante steps
(‘No Secrets’), Invisible darkness can’t see the tears I cry (‘Face The Day’),
Because night comes early when you’re lonely (‘Night Comes Early’), and
When you wake up naked in a supermarket (‘I’m Scared’).
It’s the story of seizing the moment – One day of faceless living is 24 hours too
long! – and of a band that comes alive on stage in dark rooms, demanding, Give
me the night.
And musically, the Darkroom album is filled with thrills, including Rick
Brewster’s searing guitar solo in ‘No Secrets’, the thundering drums in ‘Night
Comes Early’ (a song that encapsulates everything that makes The Angels
great), the guitar interplay in ‘I’m Scared’, and John Brewster’s harmonica
break in ‘Devil’s Gate’.
The Angels have a storied history. And it’s a story that’s still being written by
founding members John and Rick Brewster, and singer Dave Gleeson, drummer
Nick Norton, and John’s son, Sam, on bass.
“The band is re-energised to the extent that I feel like it’s a young band again,”
Rick says. “I feel like I felt when we started out.”
Growing up in Newcastle, Dave Gleeson – who later formed The Screaming
Jets – loved The Angels. “Their songs from the late ’70s and early ’80s are
more ingrained in me than even Jets songs, because they’ve been with me since
I was 12 or 13 years old.”
Four decades on, it’s time to shine a light on an album that’s occasionally
overlooked but remains an Aussie rock classic.
Take a calculated thrill … staring voices, from the dark room