The Darkness

The Darkness

Justin Hawkins - vocals / guitar
Dan Hawkins - guitar
Frankie Poullain - bass
Rufus Tiger Taylor - drums

2003 gave birth to one of the most extraordinary and best loved rock bands. The Darkness released their debut album Permission To Land to overnight success, topping the UK charts, going 5x Platinum and selling over 1.5 milion copies in the UK alone. It spawned 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.” The album clocked up a series of awards including three BRIT Awards, two Kerrang Awards and an Ivor Novello for Songwriters Of The Year, amongst many others.

The Darkness played a number of landmark shows, including a headline set at the 2004 Reading and Leeds Festivals, as part of a whirlwind career of global touring as international sensations. The band then built upon the success of their debut with their 2005 follow up One Way Ticket To Hell… And Back, which produced the Top 10 hit “One Way Ticket.”

In 2006 Justin Hawkins left the band, checking into rehab and The Darkness fell apart. Following successful treatment, the band reformed in 2011 touring Europe and South America in 2012 with Lady Gaga. The band released their comeback album Hot Cakes that year and Last Of Our Kind in 2015.

In 2016 “I Believe In A Thing Called Love” was featured in a wildly popular Apple Music commercial starring Taylor Swift.

The Darkness have now returned in 2017 with Pinewood Smile, delivering some of the most sharp-witted, infectious, humorous and downright brilliant songs of their career.
Ahead of the album’s announcement, The Darkness toured Europe in support of Guns N’ Roses.

Addressing Pinewood Smile and The Darkness’ undoubted relevance in 2017, Justin Hawkins asks, somewhat rhetorically of the world at large, “Why should anybody care? Because if you don't, we're fucked!! History will remember us as the apathetic generation who negligently ushered in a dreadful dystopian age that may or may not come to be known as The Rise of the Arseclowns. We cannot allow this to continue! You may not give a shit about Brexit or Trump, but PLEASE... give a shit about The Darkness otherwise the last bastion of cultural sensibility will fall and our airwaves will be polluted by meaningless pop purveyed by arseholes and morons... Oh wait!”


The full breadth of The Darkness’ legendary rise to the top, spectacular slide to the bottom and steady climb back up the greasy pole of rock n’ roll is soon to be laid bare in glorious detail. Currently in production is a philosophical, darkly humorous and deeply personal documentary of The Darkness’ comeback, due for release in 2018.

The documentary is being created by world-renowned photographer and filmmaker Simon Emmett (Jay Z, Matt Damon, Helen Mirren). He has recorded over 250 hours of footage to date, capturing the past, present, hopes, dreams and inner mental turmoil of The Darkness.

As 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 of the comeback 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, ‘Pinewood Smile’ creation!”


"If Sparks, The Bangles and Blue Oyster Cult made a smoothie, it might
smell something like Sweatheart" – Naeem Juwan (Spankrock)

Philadelphia based band Sweatheart has created an exciting new show
and sound. Now they are excited to take it on the road.

Through six years of working with an army of talented musician
friends, performers, film makers, visual artists and DJ's, Sweatheart
has evolved. A live show that was once art gallery madness in french
fry costumes is now more refined. Thoughtful backing tracks and dance
routines have replaced off key screaming and humping the audience
(sometimes they still hump the audience). Sweatheart is inspired by
the spirit of 80's rockers like Eddie Money, Pat Benatar and The
Outfield, and influenced by the punk and indie rock ideas they all
grew up with.

Sweatheart formed in 2004 with original members (Hot) Tanya
Nagahawhatta, Rose Luardo and Thom Lessner. When Nagahawhatta left for
medical school, close friend and fellow musician Amanda Blank
(Downtown Records) joined the band. Soon after, Dave Pap became
Sweatheart's drummer. Lessner, Luardo, Pap, and Blank form the
cornerstones of Sweatheart, and they welcome collaborators including
Michael Robinson (King God/ Holland Boys), Brian Langon (Kock107/
Sw!ms) and Trevor Williams (Barry & the Eastenders).

Last year Amanda Blank released her own album (I Love You), and toured
worldwide supporting the album. Rose Luardo did a brief stint as
Santigold's hypewoman and began her performance work with The New
Dreamz – the duo of artist Andrew Jeffrey Wright and Luardo. Thom
Lessner is a working fine artist and maintains an art studio at Space
1026 collaborative gallery. He simultaneously leads Sweatheart while
he creates art work for gallery shows as well as companies like OBEY
and Blue Q. Dave Pap works closely with Lessner to create the
Sweatheart sound and serves as handler for the rest of the band.

As stage performers, Sweatheart members are versatile and seasoned.
While Blank maintains sex appeal and has cut her teeth touring as both
a solo artist and with bands like Sweatheart and Spankrock, Rose
Luardo adds a performance art element. Luardo has many years of
experience as a theatrical performer and dancer. She is a recent
graduate of Bryn Mawr's Performance Program and has done comedy
routines for The Next Art Festival in Chicago and The 30 Days Festival
in NYC with The New Dreamz.

If the women of Sweatheart are performers, the men are musicians.
Lessner and Pap have been working with music their entire lives.
Lessner played guitar in numerous Columbus bands since Jr. high school
and later played everywhere from Philadelphia to Tokyo with artist
Clare Rojas/Peggy Honeywell (Glaxia) as her entire backing band "The
Dew". Pap has been in several bands and is a former student and
teacher at the Paul Green School of Rock Music.

A Sweatheart performance is fun and alive. It's a bold show with no
pretension, no sleepers, some guitar solos, many high-kicks and
finely-crafted, inspiring songs. At a Sweatheart show you'll see girls
popping out of boxes and eerie, human-like robots. Band members
costumed in matching outfits bring the audience in with stylized
movements and off-the-wall banter. You'll also find an interesting
collection of hand-made merchandise.

What you will walk away with after seeing a Sweatheart show is the
honesty of their feel-good stage performance and music. They believe
wholeheartedly in what they're selling — this isn't an irony show.
This is a pop-rock show. And pop-rock is what they love.



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