Written by Alex Stojanovic
All The Pretty Girls
Buccaneers Of Hispaniola
Why Don't The Beautiful Cry?
Japanese Prisoner Of Live
Lay Down With Me, Barbra
I Wish I Was In Heaven
Stampede Of Love
Release Date: October 6, 2017
Label: Cooking Vinyl Records
Justin Hawkins - Lead vocals & guitars Dan Hawkins - Guitars & backing vocals Frankie Poullain - Bass & backing vocals
Rufus Tiger Taylor - Drums & percussion
Anyone that knows The Darkness gets that they have quite the sense of humour and they have no shame in spilling it on to their albums. It may be ridiculous humour, but it's not at the Steel Panther level, which is the extremely cringe-worthy level. A few primary examples would be "Solid Gold", with the catchy line: "We're never gonna stop shitting out solid gold." and "Southern Trains" as a whole, although the lyrics in the latter sound pretty juvenile. However, my favourite comedic moment is during the last track "Stampede Of Love" where after what was a pretty ballad-esque track, it spontaneously turns into a 15-second thrash assault at the end followed by a member screaming "YOU F**KING C**T!". I had a pretty good laugh at that part.
Focusing on the highlights of the album, Justin Hawkins' vocals have not diminished one bit since Permission To Land. He still has the ability to hit those high notes. As for the songs that stand out, those include "Solid Gold" with its straightforward AC/DC style groove and catchy sing-along chorus, "Why Don't The Beautiful Cry?" due to its 70s classic rock vibe that immediately brings Queen to your mind, and despite the juvenile lyrics, "Southern Trains" stands out musically with the energetic riffs.
When it comes to the album's low points, the track "Happiness" won't exactly work with people who prefer more straight-ahead rock because it seems more like a pop song. To me, it doesn't fit the album. It would've been better if it was a bonus track. At the same time, tracks like "Lay Down With Me, Barbara" and "Japanese Prisoner Of Love" don't contain enough support to keep them standing. There's definitely great moments on this album, but I don't think this is an album I will listen to in full. If I want to listen to The Darkness, I will stick with Permission To Land and One Way Ticket To Hell & Back.
Highs: Justin Hawkins' vocal performance, "Solid Gold", "Why Don't The Beautiful Cry" and "Southern Trains".
Final Rating: 6.5/10