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LIVE: THE ANGELS, Perth – 15 May, 2015

| 20 May 2015 | Reply

LIVE: THE ANGELS, Perth – 15 May, 2015
The Charles Hotel, Perth, Western Australia
Friday, 15 May, 2015
Reviewed by Shane Pinnegar
Photography by Maree King

A to Z. That’s 26 songs. Two hours or more. That’s a helluva night’s work for any band – until you look at the track listing and think, ‘ohhh it should have been THIS song for that letter’, or ‘why isn’t THAT song in there?’ Such is the immense body of work The Angels have assembled over forty years.

There’s alternatives out there, but with a brand new vinyl single featuring their re-recording of Am I Ever Gonna See Your Face Again?, it was entirely appropriate for The Angels to start with that as their A song – and starting with an encore track sure gets the party started and the crowd fired up from the off.

The Angels LIVE Perth 15 May 2015 by Maree King (7)

It quickly comes apparent that they’re playing fast n’ loose with the rules – Shadow Boxer is the B selection, but it’s such a punchy song that no-one here seems troubled.

What follows is a trawl through almost every era of the band (there’s nothing from the Eat City era, but they don’t have a sax player on board so that makes sense) – Coming Down, Dogs Are Talking from the Bob Spencer/James Morley years, Everyman from the more recent Dave Gleeson-fronted albums, Face The Day and Fashion & Fame both firmly cross F off the list and their cover of The Animals’ We Gotta Get Outta This Place is another winner for G.

Heart Of Stone is another offering from the Gleeson era, before a frenetic I Ain’t The One and Straight Jacket see the crowd holler and whoop. There’ll be some sore throats (and heads) tomorrow.

Broken Windows weighs in for K – which is a little bit of a stretch by anyone’s standards – from their most recent album Talk The Talk, before the classics Take A Long Line and Marseilles.

Gleeson has his share of detractors – this reviewer has definitely had a couple of moments of doubt about his form since taking over the role as frontman of The Angels, especially when they insisted on only doing material from the original line-up of the band. Finally though, The Brewster brothers have done the best possible thing – which they arguably should have done from the very start – and let Gleeso off the leash. Allowed to sprawl across the entire catalogue, he absolutely nails it: never trying to copy the late, great Doc Neeson, but applying his own imprint atop the classic readings of many of these songs. It’s true that Gleeson doesn’t have the manic electric energy and presence on stage that Neeson did, but anyone who can pull off Take A Long Line and Marseilles has to be the right guy for the job.

After a decent break, the band burst back on stage for No Secrets and Outcast, Gleeson again interpreting Neeson in fine style. I Come In Peace from Talk The Talk is next, arguably at the expense of more worthy contenders such as Poor Baby (from Dark Room), Easy Prey (Watch The Red) or Small Price (Two Minute Warning).

Who writes a song starting with the letter Q? Not The Angels, that’s for sure, so the band call for requests at this point, with Mr Damage being the winner. The Band guide the decision somewhat, but an Angels gig without the song would seem incomplete so, again, no-one is troubled.

After The Rain prompts a huge singalong, Save Me could incite a riot, and Talk The Talk sees the band reminding us all that they’re still recording new music. Sure, Love Takes Care or Is That You might have been better received by the eager crowd, but that would be missing the point.

Bending the rules even further, Be With You takes the U slot, the much-loved track scoring another hit with the audience. Ivory Stairs, Who Rings The Bell and No Exit follow in quick succession, before they cheekily reprise Am I Ever Gonna See Your Face Again. We understand The Angels wanted to book-end the gig with the A and B sides of their new single, but with so many fan favourites missing the cut it seems a bit off to play one track twice.

Their cover of ZZ Top’s La Grange finishes the evening out with an absolutely scorching harmonica solo from John Brewster, and then the sweaty, well-watered crowd were left to wander into the chill night and debate what other songs could have been played. All in all, it’s a great night from a band who have had a stunning forty year career.

Am I Ever Gonna See Your Face Again?
Shadow Boxer
Coming Down
Dogs Are Talking
Face The Day/Fashion & Fame
We Gotta Get Outta This Place
Heart of Stone
I Ain’t The One
Straight Jacket
Broken Windows
Take A Long Line

No Secrets
I Come In Peace
Mr Damage
After The Rain
Save Me
Talk The Talk
Be With You
Ivory Stairs
Who Rings The Bell
No Exit
Am I Ever Gonna See Your Face Again (Again)
La Grange

Category: Live Reviews, Photo Galleries

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