UNTIL earlier this year the closest fans could get to the ultimate Little Angels experience was by giving 1994’s A Little Of The Past compilation a whirl.
Until the summer of 2012, that’s exactly where the Scarborough band belonged: in the past.
It had always looked like they’d stay there too. Despite frontman Toby Jepson’s yearning for a full reunion, his fellow Angels never seemed that bothered.
But it’s amazing what a day out at Download can do. Personally invited to play the world’s biggest rock and metal festival, the Angels reformed and their glorious Donington comeback followed hot on the heels of a few rehearsals and a handful of low key warm-up shows.
Even then, by all accounts, it was immediately clear the old magic was still there.
In Newcastle, the very thought that Jepson and Co could remain a footnote on the page of early 90s British rock history seemed ludicrous. Here was a band still boasting the chemistry, the camaraderie and, crucially, the feelgood hits that captured the imagination first time around.
Jepson and guitar hero Bruce John Dickinson always enjoyed a creative bond forged in rock n roll heaven, and few partnerships could better the buoyant singer and his note-perfect sidekick two decades ago.
Twenty years on and the pair breathed new life into old favourites with party starter She’s A Little Angel, the poignant Don’t Prey For Me and anthem Boneyard executed with sheer brilliance. Womankind was a wonderful reminder of what assured songwriters the Angels became while Radical Your Lover still ranks as one of the finest British rock anthems of a generation. Little Angels are still right on the money but they’ll never make a fortune. And a desire to revive former glories and recall a golden age of homegrown rock will never pay the bills.
Could there be a happy compromise? Fingers crossed because these Young Gods turned old stagers transcend generations with their addictive blend of power pop and party rock. Absence might have made the heart grow fonder – but losing Little Angels second time around would be a killer blow.