The history of The Darkness: biography and interesting facts about the group that revived glam rock

The history of the band that revived glam rock

The history of glam rock band The Darkness: biography and interesting facts

The success of the British band The Darkness in the early 2000s was completely unexpected and deafening. Their success is particularly impressive, given that the band did not follow the beaten path: they did not sing the popular songs of the time, but decided to revive the already forgotten glam rock of the 70s.

The band's music is distinguished by bright guitar solos, excellent rhythm, humor and beautiful vocals, in a word, everything you need to become not a one-day band, but a band that will be listened to years later. We will find out who and how came up with the idea to revive the forgotten genre and how success came to them.

group the darkness
The Darkness band


Like many successful musicians, the future members of The Darkness began to get involved in music as a child, and, like many, did not start with the same group that received worldwide fame.

So it was in Lowestoft and it all started with brothers Dan and Justin Hawkins. Young musicians started by recording covers of famous songs. Later, in 1997, they moved to London where they formed a band called Empire.

Empire played music in the style of prog rock. There were difficulties from the very beginning: Justin was not enthusiastic about the chosen style, he did not really like his brother's vocals. As a result, the group fell apart, but the brothers did not lose their love for music and creativity.

One New Year's Eve, Justin was taken to a club where he sang Queen's "Bohemian Rhapsody" as part of a competition. The audience was amazed: Justin's vocals were great, and everyone liked the acrobatic jumps that Jas diversified his performance with. Of course, he won the competition, and in addition, he came up with the idea of creating a new group.

For starters, the brothers remembered their former Empire bandmate Frankie Pollane. By that time, he was in Venezuela, but after hearing the proposal of the Hawkins, he immediately returned to his homeland. Frankie was the guitarist, all that was left was to find a drummer and the band was ready. Then Dan remembered his high school drummer friend Ed Graham. This is how the group "The Darkness" appeared, the frontman of which Justin deservedly became.

Quite unexpected for the time, the musical style was inspired by bands admired by members of The Darkness such as Aerosmith, Queen, Thin Lizzy, T. Rex, Van Halen and Def Leppard.


Not many bands were as lucky as this one: success came to them literally immediately. Crowds gathered at their concerts, the Must Destroy Music office, which is a branch of Atlantic Records, became interested in the group. In 2002 The Darkness recorded their first single "I Believe In A Thing Called Love".

In 2003, The Darkness performed as the opening act for Def Leppard, and also appeared on the same stage with Mettalica and Iron Maiden. Needless to say, the group's fame is growing by leaps and bounds, and their own concerts are sold out.

In the same year, the group's first album "Permission To Land" was released, with sales exceeding 3 million copies, and the album itself was at the top of the charts and stayed there for four weeks.

But, unfortunately, not everything can go so smoothly. When the second album "One Way Ticket To Hell ... And Back" was being recorded, Frankie left the group. In his place was drummer Richie Edwards, who had previously been a guitar tech.

The second album The Darkness was produced by Roy Thomas Baker, who worked with David Bowie and the bands Queen, Nazareth, Rolling Stones, Guns N'Roses… A true constellation. Everything indicated that the group was going to be successful. But no matter how. The album "failed", the position in the charts decreased, even the concert activity began to wane. The group did not want to give up, a third album was planned, but in 2006, frontman Justin Hawkins was hospitalized with drug and alcohol addiction, and upon returning from there he announced that he was leaving the group. So the group The Darkness suddenly broke up.

The rest of the band changed their name to Stone Gods and Justin formed a band called Hot Leg, but both of these projects went under in 2010.


In 2011, the band members settled all the misunderstandings and a happy reunion happened. The group immediately recorded a new album "Hot Cakes". The album was a hit with critics and fans alike and peaked at #4 on the UK Singles Chart.

Ed Graham left the band in 2014. The band members have assured fans that their relationship with Ed is fine and that he is leaving due to poor health and inability to continue his work. Ed was replaced by Emily Dolan, a girl who, according to Justin, revived The Darkness with her energy.

Emily remained with the band until 2015 when she decided to leave The Darkness to pursue new projects. At the same time, the band members greeted her very warmly, recognizing Emily's great contribution to their fifth album, Last Of Our Kind.

Emily was replaced by drummer Rufus Tiger Taylor, son of Queen's drummer Roger Taylor.

darkness press session 2015
The Darkness (2015)

In 2017, the band opened for Guns N'Roses, the same year they released their album Pinewood Smile. The story continues and the band does not change its retro style, resurrecting the traditions of hard and glam rock.

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