Concert Review: The Darkness, October 23, The Phoenix

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This past Friday night will probably be remembered by Toronto Blue Jays fans as the night that the team ended their playoff run, but for people like me who didn’t really care one way or the other about it (sorry, Jays fans), a show by British rockers The Darkness seemed like a good alternative. I expected to find like-minded folks who also didn’t want to watch baseball, but was slightly surprised to find a lot of Jays caps in the crowd and an impromptu chant of “Let’s go Blue Jays!” erupting during a lull in the set. I guess all these people just kept checking their phones for updates throughout the show.

Singer Justin Hawkins acknowledged the occasion, assuring us at the end of their set that “The Darkness wishes your local sports team success” and earlier snatching a hat from a fan. He wore the hat for a few songs before he started feeling bad about it and tossed it back into the crowd (and hopefully back to the hat’s proper owner). “You can see the hand to eye coordination there,” he joked, adding that he had many sports achievements of his own.

While I have no further evidence of his sports achievements, The Darkness are responsible for a few notable musical achievements, many of which were played during their set. “Growing On Me,” “Black Shuck,” “Get Your Hands Off My Woman” and “Givin’ Up” all made an appearance, as did “I Believe in a Thing Called Love,” which Hawkins referred to as “a song that made us ridiculously famous” before telling the audience that the onus was on them to dance “…or simply bounce.” The band also played some newer material off of their latest Last Of Our Kind as well as a brand new song, the first one they had written with new drummer (and son of Queen’s Roger Taylor) Rufus Tiger Taylor. One of the highlights of their set for me though was their Maiden/Priest-inspired cover of Radiohead’s “Street Spirit (Fade Out)” which, even though it is a cover, really epitomizes what The Darkness are all about – it’s big, bold and a little silly, but a hell of a lot of fun.


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Posted on by Paul in Concerts

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