Dave Gleeson, frontman for Aussie rock legends The Angels, says the band's seminal 1978 album ‘Face To Face’ still hits fans the same way, whether they are old or new.
“That’s the great thing about John and Rick’s [Brewster] songwriting is it’s all very timeless, there’s nothing there that indicates anything is happening in any particular era.
“It’s all pretty esoteric lyrics… So when you’re up there performing for younger audiences what they hear is the raw power, the dual guitar smashing out.”
The Angels will set out on a national tour playing ‘Face To Face’ and other classic tracks from May through to July.
Dave, who started playing with band after original frontman Doc Neeson’s departure in 2011, says he grew up listening to the band and even though they have been making music together for years now, playing with the band can still be a trip.
“I love every song they’ve got and I’ve been a fan since I was ten-years-old and [when] the ‘Face To Face’ album came out, my older brothers used to play the album ad nauseum.
“To be up on stage singing them now is still pretty surreal.”
While the make-up of the band is not the same as the original, the writing of the famous Brewster brothers, John and Rick, remains at the heart of the band and Dave says they are both a blast and an honour to work with.
“It’s been great to able to go through that process with them and contribute songs to the two albums that we’ve done since I joined.”
Sadly, Doc Neeson passed away in 2014. But Dave, who is also the lead singer of The Screaming Jets, says he learned a lot from the iconic frontman. “I watched Doc all the time, and obviously the rest of the band, and their energy levels were always up.
"There was always sweat flying and that pumps the crowd up. That’s something I always took with me. People sometimes say I sound like Doc and that’s because in [my] first band we did about ten Angels covers.”
The 2018 tour mostly consists of pub shows outside of major cities, something that Dave says is important to the band. “It’s a loyalty to the loyal fan base that you have and making sure they don’t have to travel out to the cities [to see you perform].”
In addition to accounting for non-metropolitan fans, the band thinks these pub shows are the best place for punters to get the full, band experience. “It’s where we thrive,” Dave says.
Along with the national tour, The Angels will be re-releasing the original 'Face To Face' album along with a re-recorded version with Dave at the helm, something he thoroughly enjoyed. “We smashed that out in two days, it was awesome.”
‘Face To Face’ is widely recognised as a piece of Australian music history and performing it is not something Dave takes lightly, nor any other tracks written by the Brewster Brothers.
“I compare it to this – with The Angels I’m a subby and I do as I’m told, and with The [Screaming] Jets I’m the contractor and I’ll do whatever the f#$% I like.”