The Darkness

The Darkness

Infobox musical artist
Name = The Darkness



Img_capt = The Darkness in concert, 2004.
Img_size =
Background = group_or_band
Birth_name =
Alias =
Born =
Died =
Origin = Lowestoft, Suffolk, England
Instrument =
Genre = Hard rock [ [http://uk.real.com/music/artist/The_Darkness/ The Darkness - Hard Rock - Rock/Pop - Music - www.real.com ] ]
Glam metal [ [http://www.apeculture.com/music/darkness.htm Ape Culture - The Darkness at the Henry Fonda Theater 2004 ] ]
Glam rock [ [http://www.bbc.co.uk/norfolk/music/gigs/darkness.shtml BBC - Norfolk Music - Glam rock band The Darkness set the world alight ] ]
Occupation =
Years_active = 2000 – 2006
Label = Atlantic Records
Must Destroy
Associated_acts = Onion Trump
Stone Gods
British Whale
Hot Leg
URL = [http://www.thedarknessrock.com TheDarknessRock.com]
Past_members = Justin Hawkins
Richie Edwards
Ed Graham
Dan Hawkins
Frankie Poullain
Notable_instruments =

The Darkness were a multi-BRIT Award-winning British hard rock/glam rock band. Their highly retro style of music was influenced by rock bands like Led Zeppelin, Queen, AC/DC, Guns N' Roses, Aerosmith, Sparks, Van Halen, T. Rex, .38 Special, Def Leppard, Whitesnake and Thin Lizzy. They were best known for the soaring falsetto of their lead singer Justin Hawkins, whose departure in 2006 resulted in the dissolution of the band.

Originally started in 1991 from Kirkley High School, Lowestoft in Suffolk, brothers Justin Hawkins (vocals and guitar) and Dan Hawkins (guitar and vocals) found themselves in London where they met up with childhood friends, Frankie Poullain (bass guitar and vocals) and Ed Graham (drums and percussion), and thus The Darkness was formed. Dan initially saw his brother's potential of being a frontman after Justin did an impressive recreation of Queen's "Bohemian Rhapsody" at a New Year's Eve party in 1999, thrown by Justin and Dan's aunt in her pub The Swan at Gillingham just over the River Waveney in Norfolk, despite the fact that Justin was only miming to the original song. Playing at first only in pubs and bars, their pyrotechnic guitar solos and over the top performances soon brought them to public knowledge.

Band history

"Permission to Land" and commercial success

Their debut album, "Permission to Land", went straight to number two in the UK charts upon its release on 7 July 2003, before going to number one and staying there for four weeks, eventually going on to sell 1.5 million copies in the UK.

The Darkness took inspiration for some of their work from the local north Suffolk area, including "Black Shuck" which mentions the nearby village of Blythburgh.

The success of this album led to heavy touring for the band, including European portions of Metallica's Summer Sanitarium Tour 2003. They then went on to headline the Carling Festival in 2004. The band won three BRIT Awards in 2004 in response to the album, "Best Group", "Best Rock Group" and "Best Album". They also won two Kerrang! awards in 2004 for "Best Live Act" and "Best British Band". The third single from the album, "I Believe in a Thing Called Love", was a substantial hit in the UK as was their tilt at the Christmas 2003 number 1, "Christmas Time (Don't Let the Bells End)", which only just fell short, both singles reaching No.2 in 2003.

By late 2004 the band's constant media coverage had started to lead to a general public backlash of antipathy, with the commonly-heard claim that they were no more than a novelty band. Fact|date=February 2007 The band themselves seemed to show signs that they were disillusioned with their constant media appearances, infamously walking off of an episode of the U.S.-nationally-syndicated radio talk show "Loveline" (to the barely-concealed delight of hosts Adam Carolla and Dr. Drew Pinsky on 19 April 2004). Ultimately, the band responded to the criticism of over-saturation by touring the UK's top arenas on their "Winter-National Tour". One part of the show included Justin climbing upon a life-sized tiger during "Love on the Rocks with No Ice" and being elevated above the audience whilst playing guitar. The majority of the shows on the tour had sold out.Fact|date=February 2007

"One Way Ticket to Hell... And Back"

On 23 May 2005 bassist Frankie Poullain left the band during recording of their second album, "One Way Ticket to Hell... and Back", apparently due to "musical differences". Frankie has disputed this version of events, claiming he was "frozen out" and forced to leave the band. On 13 June 2005, The Darkness announced that Richie Edwards, formerly Dan's guitar technician, had replaced Frankie as bassist.

In October 2005, a month before the album was to be officially released, Justin Hawkins won an eBay auction for a copy of "One Way Ticket to Hell... and Back" for £350 under the username 'turbogunhawk'. He claimed he did this so that he could track down whoever sold the digitally-marked advance copy of the album and try to prevent it from happening again. [ [http://theage.com.au/news/breaking/band-buys-own-album-from-ebay/2005/11/10/1131578152968.html UK band buys own album from eBay] at theage.com.au]

"One Way Ticket", the first single from their second album, was released on 14 November 2005, debuting and peaking at number 8 on the UK Singles chart. The album itself was released on 28 November 2005, to somewhat mixed reviews. The album was produced by rock producer Roy Thomas Baker, best known for his work with Queen. Early sales figures in the UK showed the album had not sold as well its predecessor, "Permission to Land". The album debuted at number 11, and fell to number 34 in the second week of its release. Although it has since reached platinum status, this contrasts with their debut's five times platinum status.

The second single taken from their second album was "Is It Just Me?", released on 20 February 2006. The single gained a preliminary position of No. 6 all that week, but finally charted at number 8. Justin announced when on stage that their third single to be released from the album was "Girlfriend". Released 22 May, "Girlfriend" charted at number 39, mainly due to the lack of radio play and promotion.

after touring Scandinavia and Continental Europe in March.

Justin Hawkins' departure

In August 2006, lead singer Justin Hawkins was admitted to a rehabilitation clinic in concern of his health, which caused the band to cancel several concerts. [ [http://www.g4tv.com/thefeed/blog/TheFeed/post/636434/Darkness_To_See_Light_After_Rehab.html "Statement from the band over recent criticism"] ] Around this same time the band confirmed that they were to start working on their third album to be released early 2007. However on 10 October 2006, "The Sun" newspaper reported that Justin Hawkins was leaving the band after completing his course of rehabilitation from alcohol and cocaine problems. [ [http://www.thesun.co.uk/article/0,,2-2006470303,00.html "Justin Quits"] ] The article, and ensuing rumours, stated that the band would continue without him, possibly with Richie Edwards as the front man. In response to the story being reported by the media, the following message was posted on The Darkness' official forum: [ [http://www.thedarknessrock.com/forum/index.php?topic=2593.0 "Message from the band"] ]

"We're sorry that you had to find this out through the newspapers, but we were hoping until the last minute that this - Justin's exit - wasn't going to happen. We - Dan, Ed and Richie - are still in total shock and can't say at this stage what the future holds. We would like to thank all our fans, partners and family for their continuous support. You will hear from us, once we know what we want to do..."

tone Gods

On 24 December 2006, it was reported by Yahoo! News that bass player Richie Edwards would become the group's new frontman, with Toby MacFarlaine to join The Darkness and take over on bass. [ [http://uk.news.yahoo.com/21122006/364/bassist-takes-darkness-frontman.html Bassist takes over as Darkness frontman] ] In blog entries on MySpace, Richie Edwards, Dan Hawkins and Ed Graham said that they had started recording a new album with Toby McFarlaine, and that they had formed a new band together.

On 2 March 2007, The Darkness' official website was changed, showing a photograph of the new, and as yet unnamed band. Links to the members individual Myspace pages were included, confirming the line-up of Richie Edwards, Dan Hawkins, Toby MacFarlaine and Ed Graham. Richie later added a message to the site, categorically confirming that the band would not continue under the name "The Darkness", saying "we are literally days away from announcing our new name".

It was announced on 25 August 2007 that the band had finished recording an album but no release dates or names, of either the band or album, had been decided. Record label and support has yet to be decided.

On 9 November 2007, it was announced on The University of East Anglia's student union website that the new band would be called Stone Gods. This name was confirmed on the official website on 21 November 2007. The line-up has been confirmed as Dan Hawkins (lead guitar), Toby MacFarlaine (bass), Ed Graham (drums) and Richie Edwards (vocals/guitar).

Discography

All chart positions are based on UK entries.

Albums

*"Permission to Land" (7 July 2003) #1 UK (5x Platinum), #17 AUS, #36 US (Gold), #62 FRA
*"One Way Ticket to Hell... and Back" (28 November 2005) #11 UK (Platinum), #25 AUS, #58 US, #132 FRA

EPs

* "I Believe in a Thing Called Love" (2002)
* " Christmas Time" (2005)

ingles

Awards

2003

* Kerrang! Best Album (Permission to Land)
* Kerrang! Best Live Act
* Metal Hammer 'Golden God' for Best Single (Get Your Hands Off My Woman)

2004

* Kerrang! Best British Band
* Kerrang! Best Live Act
* Metal Hammer 'Golden God' for Best Video ("Love Is Only a Feeling")
* Ivor Novello Award for Songwriters of the Year
* BRIT Award for Best Act
* BRIT Award for Best Rock Act
* BRIT Award for Best Album ("Permission to Land")
* MTV Europe Music Award for Best MTV2 UK & Ireland Act
* IFPI Platinum Europe Award for sales in Europe in excess of 1,000,000 (triple Platinum) (Permission to Land)
* Elle Style Award for Most Stylish Band
* Meteor Ireland Award for Best Album ("Permission to Land")
* Smash Hits! Pollwinners' Party for Best Rock Award
* RIAA Digital Sales Certifications Gold Award for 100,000 downloads ("I Believe in a Thing Called Love")
* European Border Breakers Award for debut albums of European acts achieving the best sales outside of their country of origin in 2003 ("Permission to Land")

2005

* ASCAP Award for one of the Most Performed Works in the USA ("I Believe in a Thing Called Love")

2006

* MTV Australia's Best Rock Rock Video award ("One Way Ticket")

References

ee also

* Toby MacFarlaine
* British Whale
* Hot Leg

External links

* [http://www.thedarknessrock.com thedarknessrock.com] , the band's official website
* [http://www.justinhawkins.org www.justinhawkins.org ] , Justin Hawkins fan forum
* [http://usuarios.lycos.es/onedarkness onewaytickettotheweb] , A Spanish site of The Darkness


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