In their quest to become even more of a rock and roll cliche, frontman Justin Hawkins has quit the Darkness to focus on getting sober. According to an interview with the Sun, “I spent over £150,000 on cocaine in three years — a frightening amount. I was consuming up to five grams a day which cost me £1,000 a week, sometimes more.”
Apparently, the band will carry on without him. That will make the inevitable reunion segment even more exciting in the Behind the Music episode. Can’t wait.
Customs frowned upon the fiberglass UFO, and the towering hydraulic phalluses had to be tucked away in a south London storeroom. Domestic tour support didn’t cover the laserbeam generator, nor did it allow for the hovering obelisk, and officials understandably balked at plans for flash pots and flaming tongues. No, The Darkness gig at Pontiac’s Clutch Cargo’s wasn’t couched in the cavernous ridiculosity of, say, their recent BRIT awards appearance. But the opening act’s drummer did take his shirt off, and the Marshalls and Mesa Boogies were big and square and turned up really loud, and at least one Les Paul was adorned with the Union Jack. In other words, it was a fun, high voltage rock show with more power chords than pomp and less hype than Steven Seagal’s comeback campaign. Oh, and catsuits. Customs allowed the catsuits.
“Get your hands off my woman, motherfucker.” Out of any mouth, this is an ultimatum. But soaring in falsetto over a retooled version of the riff from Urge Overkill’s “Sister Havana,” it’s flash pot Valhalla. Justin Hawkins knows this. He’s the fruity-haired, falsetto-throated frontman of Norfolk, England’s The Darkness, who with sparks flying, drumsticks twirling, and spandex stretching in all the right places have answered the famous musical question “Why don’t more bands sound like Savatage?”