The Darkness on course for chart success ahead of Norwich UEA date

The Darkness who enjoying success with new album Pinewood Smile. Photo: Simon Emmett

The Darkness who enjoying success with new album Pinewood Smile. Photo: Simon Emmett - Credit: Simon Emmett

The Lowestoft rockers' fifth album Pinewood Smile is predicted to enter the album chart top five, making it their most successful release since their mega-selling debut Permission To Land.

The Darkness who enjoying success with new album Pinewood Smile. Photo: Simon Emmett

The Darkness who enjoying success with new album Pinewood Smile. Photo: Simon Emmett - Credit: Simon Emmett

Lowestoft rockers The Darkness could net their highest charting album for 14 years after the release of their new album Pinewood Smile.

The band's fifth album is on course to smash into the top five of this week's album charts, and mid-week predictions suggested it could enter in the top three, which would mean its their best UK chart position since their mega-selling 2003 debut album.

Permission To Land sold over 1.5 million copies in the UK alone. It turned them from a hard-working bunch of wannabes gigging in East Anglia to global rock stars.

Spawning a series of hit singles including I Believe In A Thing Called Love, Growing On Me, Get Your Hands Off My Woman and Love Is Only A Feeling, it also won them three BRIT Awards, two Kerrang Awards and an Ivor Novello for 'Songwriters Of The Year'.

Justin Hawkins of The Darkness. Photo: Simon Emmett

Justin Hawkins of The Darkness. Photo: Simon Emmett - Credit: Simon Emmett


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They followed it up with 2005's One Way Ticket To Hell… And Back, which produced the Top 10 hit One Way Ticket, before frontman Justin Hawkins left the band, checking into rehab as The Darkness fell apart.

Following successful treatment, the band reformed in 2011 touring Europe and South America in 2012 with Lady Gaga and releasing their comeback album Hot Cakes, followed by Last of Our Kind in 2015.

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Produced by Grammy Award-winning producer Adrian Bushby, who is best known for his work with Foo Fighters and Muse, Pinewood Smile has all the crucial elements of classic Darkness.

It also features the drumming and vocal talents of new band member Rufus Tiger Taylor, son of Queen legend Roger Taylor, who shares vocal duties with Justin on two of the tracks.

The Darkness' Pinewood Smile is set for a place in the top 5 of the album charts. Photo: Cooking Vin

The Darkness' Pinewood Smile is set for a place in the top 5 of the album charts. Photo: Cooking Vinyl - Credit: Archant

If you are expecting more of what made Justin and co famous (I Believe in a Thing Called Love) you'll be happy to hear the pop style rock of the poodle rock days is still there. The chart success marks the latest step in the band's comeback.

Justin explains, 'As soon as Permission To Land was wrapped up I already knew it was going to be a mega smash. But I also knew that the second album would not be, and that we'd split up, and I knew we'd come back together and I knew the comeback would be fabulous.

'The fabulous element hasn't materialised as yet, but it's all a work in progress. To be frank – the story of The Darkness is: years of perspiration, overnight sensation, over-saturation, temporary separation, reunion elation, career renovation!'

The album marks a busy period for the band, which also includes Justin's brother and guitarist Dan Hawkins and bassist Frankie Poullain. To mark its release they are playing 17 dates in the UK this November and December, including a headline show at Norwich's UEA LCR.

Then next year will see the release of a philosophical, darkly humorous and deeply personal documentary of The Darkness' comeback, which is being made by world-renowned photographer and filmmaker Simon Emmett. He has recorded over 250 hours of footage to date, capturing the past, present, hopes, dreams and inner mental turmoil of the band.

• The Darkness will play the UEA LCR, Norwich, on December 3, 7pm, £27.50, 01603 508050, ueaticketbookings.co.uk

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