Australia's Heavy magazine recently conducted an interview with drummer Gene Hoglan of veteran thrashers DARK ANGEL. You can listen to the entire chat via the Spreaker widget below. A few excerpts follow (transcribed by BLABBERMOUTH.NET).
On how DARK ANGEL's 2013 reunion came about:
Gene: "It had been brewing and mentioned by my management for some time. It was mostly a schedule issue, always. But I remember in 2013, it was looking like 2014 was going to have some pretty open spaces in it to try to get some shows. DARK ANGEL has always received offers throughout the years of, 'Hey, guys, we'd like to host your return show.' We were finally able to take advantage of some of those offers that were on the table for a while. It started off by playing some shows. I believe our first show was Santiago, Chile, which was incredible. We got to play with MEGADETH at a big, huge arena. I thought that was pretty funny. I've played that arena before, a time or two, but here's the DARK ANGEL return show, no little warm-up club gig to get prepared. The first show was in front of 20,000 people in some big, old arena down in Chile. It's 'throw yourself right into the fire.' So that was pretty cool. It just became available, having some time available to do it, talking about it. We've always… even through my touring career, every time I'm playing in town where one of the DARK ANGEL guys is at, they always come out to the shows. We've always been close and tight. We never went our separate ways out of animosity by any means. It was just time to make a move back in '92 when we kind of dissolved DARK ANGEL, I guess. It's been picking up your last bit of fun back in the day. It's like you pick up right where you left off, except everybody's a little bit older, a little bit more mature. We're all really cool with each other; we enjoy each other's company. Our rehearsals are always just kind of a laugh fest as well. We dig it. We're having a good time doing it. And we're really excited to bring that enthusiasm down to Australia and kick everybody's asses for a week."
On what DARK ANGEL's future plans are, including a possible new studio album:
Gene: "We hope to have the new album out in 2020. We're hoping for that. It's been something that Jim Durkin [guitar] and myself have slowly been working towards over the past couple of years. And, that's another schedule-based situation. The one thing, Jim and I as the writers of the music, we've always found that we worked best together when we're face-to-face in a room. We both got guitars on, and we just recently purchased an electronic kit for Jim's home studio that we can bash away some riffs on guitars, then it's, like, 'Hey, Gene. Lay tracks and drums for this. Let's get the rudimentary demos going for all these tunes.' So that's what we're in the midst of doing at the moment. Tomorrow, for instance, I head up to L.A. to tackle a day of writing with Jim. That's another thing: Jim lives a couple of hours away up in L.A. I live in San Diego, which is a couple of hours south. As you might have heard, California traffic is what it is. It takes me two and a half hours to get there, then a couple of hours to get home afterward. For every day of writing, that's pretty much a four-and-a-half-hour travel day for myself, but I love it. I'm willing to do it. It means a lot to us. Hopefully, it means a lot to the fans that we get another DARK ANGEL album out. It's going to be an ass-kicker, I know it. I'm stoked to see what the future brings for DARK ANGEL. These days with albums and album sales, really, all an album is anymore, it's a new way to get yourself out on the road. We can accept offers right now and do things right now as kind of a — I don't want to say a novelty act, or nostalgia act or anything like that, but since we don't have a new album, there's, I suppose a feeling or limitation to what we can be doing. It just seems like once you get this new album out, DARK ANGEL, the sky is the limit for you. All the promoters across the world are on board. 'Oh, you got a new album out? Let's bring you to town.' That's our objective and our goal is to get a new record out in 2020. A total ass-kicking, face-ripping, metallic DARK ANGEL record, and then that will open up the avenues for more touring. So that's what we hope to accomplish."
DARK ANGEL's first CD since 1991's "Time Does Not Heal" will feature the lineup that has performed sporadic live shows since reuniting in 2013: Hoglan, Durkin, Eric Meyer (guitar), Ron Rinehart (vocals) and Michael Gonzalez (bass).
DARK ANGEL released two albums with Don Doty on vocals — 1984's "We Have Arrived" and 1986's "Darkness Descends" — before he exited the group and was replaced by Rinehart (after a brief stint with Jim Drabos in 1987). The band issued two more studio LPs — 1989's "Leave Scars" and the aforementioned "Time Does Not Heal" — before calling it quits in 1992.