fri 25/09/2020

CD: The Darkness – Easter is Cancelled | reviews, news & interviews

CD: The Darkness – Easter is Cancelled

CD: The Darkness – Easter is Cancelled

The comedy metallers are back with a smirk

The Darkness: laughing again

The Darkness have become something of an institution in British rock music since exploding onto the scene with their 2003 debut album, Permission to Land and its breakthrough single “I Believe in a Thing Called Love”.

The Darkness have become something of an institution in British rock music since exploding onto the scene with their 2003 debut album, Permission to Land and its breakthrough single “I Believe in a Thing Called Love”. Over-the-top stage costumes and Justin Hawkins’ falsetto vocals may have been their trademarks for almost 20 years, but their humorous take on hard rock continues to raise smiles everywhere. Easter is Cancelled, needless to say, does little to change their somewhat individual take on a genre that is not usually renowned for having a sense of humour.

Hawkins’ dramatic singing style and laugh-out-loud lyrics, his brother Dan’s Queen and Thin Lizzy-like guitar playing, and a smattering of power ballads are still in place, but unlike many humorous records, Easter is Cancelled can stand way more than a couple of spins before listener attention starts to wander. In fact, The Darkness’ latest album boasts more than a few tunes that might be expected to be part of their live set for many years. In particular, “Choke on It” and the title track could well receive the kind of attention as their previous highlights for some time to come.

Of course, the humour does wear thin in places, especially on power ballad “Deck Chair”. But there is plenty else to maintain the giggle factor, lead single “Rock and Roll Deserves to Die” being a case in point. Elsewhere, Hawkins’ pop metal biography “Live ‘Til I Die” tells of his teenage years, when “I became a subject of a campaign of ridicule”. If anything, this is something that he has embraced over the years and turned to his advantage. After all, it would be difficult to imagine The Darkness becoming overly serious and knocking out some historical pomposity, like Sabaton’s recent First World War-mining opus – and we’re all the better for that.

The Darkness’ latest album boasts more than a few tunes that might be expected to be part of their live set for many years

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