The Stones. The Dolls. Hanoi Rocks. Could Dangereens be the next great rock'n'rollers?

Dangereens group shot
(Image credit: Golden Robot)

Montreal show-stoppers Dangereens formed in proper rock’n’roll fashion. 

“I was in another band before, and Felix [Brisson] came to see our last show,” frontman Hugo Chatrand explains. “After the show he said: ‘Hey man, that was pretty good.’ So we talked. Some time after, I found him on Facebook and I said: ‘Do you want to start a band?’ He said: ‘Sure.’ And then I said: ‘Okay, do you play an instrument?’ Because I just asked him because he looked cool, you know?” 

Luckily, Brisson was as good at playing guitar as he was at wearing cowboy boots. The Canadian wonder twins found suitable sidemen, and in 2018 Dangereens were born. Just don’t ask them what it means; they’re not exactly sure. 

There’s a magical sound that happens in your head when you think about rock’n’roll. Not in the generic sense, but the sacred geometry that rearranges your DNA. The Stones had it in ’69, the Dolls in ’72, Hanoi Rocks in ’81. Dangereens have it right now. 

“In the beginning, the Stones were a big influence,” Says Chatrand. “But the thing is I’m more into fifties rock’n’roll and forties rhythm and blues, and the other guys like the heavier stuff from the seventies and eighties. So getting that together kinda naturally created that sort of seventies glam sound. It waslike going back to that fifties rock’n’roll but playing it through a Marshall stack.”

The glorious result of this bedraggled fusion is Tough Luck, their debut album, a pocket symphony of hard times and gorgeous melodies. It’s 1955 meets 1974, bent-nosed hooligans meets dandified decadents. It’s Victorian lace and purple leather boots. And, befitting an album with that prophetic title, it ain’t been an easy ride. 

Tough Luck was originally released on German label Alien Snatch in May of 2020. But even Dangereens’ casual brilliance was no match for a global pandemic. 

“We put out the album in the middle of the pandemic, thinking by the time we reach June we’ll be able to promote it live,” says Chatrand. “We were very wrong. So we sidelined for two years.” 

Good fortune intervened last year when Michigan hard rock band Ghosts Of Sunset heard Tough Luck and suggested their label, Golden Robot, take a listen. 

“They liked us and asked us if we wanted to record some new music for them,” Chatrand explains. “We said sure, but we have this really good album that nobody heard.” 

Golden Robot have re-released Tough Luck in a remastered edition with two bonus tracks. And the band are ready again to hit the road. “We’re talking about the US and Europe next year. We want to go everywhere."

Ken McIntyre

Classic Rock contributor since 2003. Twenty Five years in music industry (40 if you count teenage xerox fanzines). Bylines for Metal Hammer, Decibel. AOR, Hitlist, Carbon 14, The Noise, Boston Phoenix, and spurious publications of increasing obscurity. Award-winning television producer, radio host, and podcaster. Voted “Best Rock Critic” in Boston twice. Last time was 2002, but still. Has been in over four music videos. True story.