In November 2021, the Australian Road Crew Association’s (ARCA) released the 20th edition of their Desk Tape Series: Models live at the Overlander Hotel. The recording was made in 1980, two years after the band formed in Melbourne.
The live tapes are made straight off the mixing desk and made by a road crew member, in this case it was Mark Woods, their long-time sound engineer who joined them in their very early days.
“Thanx to Rod and Desi for the cover photo, Mark Woods for the recording, Nprint for the cover artwork, Phil Dracoulis for the mastering and Models for supporting roadies and crew.”
The Desk Tape Series was created by ARCA to raise funds to provide financial, health, counselling and well-being services for roadies and crew in crisis.
Models LIVE At The Overlander Hotel 1980 captures the way the band would switch from hard hitting (‘The Other People Incident’, ‘Holiday House’, ‘Golden Arches’) to synth-driven new world epics (‘Atlantic Romantic’, ‘Happy Birthday IBM’, ‘Keep It A Secret’ and ‘Early Morning Brain’) to left of centre dance pop (‘Brave New World’, ‘Strategic Air Command’).
They played five sets in that one day – three in the afternoon and two at night – at the country hotel in Shepparton in central Victoria. It had a 50’s style ballroom with a large dancefloor.
Models were paid $500 and a cut of door takings.
Some of the country audience initially didn’t take to them – they didn’t do covers and Models’ policy at that time of not releasing singles meant they got no commercial radio airplay.
Woods: “But by the end of the afternoon sets, the crowd changed. You can hear it on the recording, they’re starting to clap more and really getting into it.”
Full release notes, including quotes from Mark Woods and Mark Ferrie, can be found on the ARCA website.
- Use The Gun Instead
- Whisper Through The Wall
- Brave New World
- Pull The Pin
- Keep It A Secret
- Early Morning Brain
- Body Shop
- Young Rodents
- You Are My Current Affair
- Party Girls
- Owe You Nothing
- John From Earth
- Strategic Air Command
- Light Fling
- Atlantic Romantic
- The Other People Incident
- Happy Birthday I.B.M.
- Holiday House
- Golden Arches
Sean Kelly – vocals, guitar
Mark Ferrie – bass
Andrew Duffield – keyboards, synthesisers
Janis Freidenfelds – (aka Johnny Crash): drums, percussion
Mark Woods – sound
Mark Stevens – lights
Tim Roberts – foldback, truck