I first came across British rock band The Darkness with their hit single I Believe In A Thing Called Love that was released in 2003. This song in the most basic terms is an unforgettable wild ride that is hard to dislike. It has falsettos, guitar shredding and an unbelievably contagious hook. Within their latest album Last of Our Kind the band is notably more serious in their musical theme and darker, however the album still has a bucketload of beautiful falsettos and stupendous guitar riffs.
The first track Barbarian is the best track on the album. It is dramatic, full-on and weirdly grounded in East Anglian history. The track integrates glam rock and medieval rock with 2 monologues throughout the song, a ripping guitar riff and incredible falsettos in the chorus. From this track it is apparent that the album is going to have elements of heavy metal rock. The next track Open Fire emulates 80s rock and is a kick ass rock anthem. Last of Our Kind plays with an acoustic arpeggio and transforms into a full throttle rock song. Roaring Waters is another great track kicks off with a punchy guitar riff and really showcases the singer Justin Hawkin’s vocals.
Mighty Wings is the track where their heavy metal elements really rise in power. The track begins with an electric fuzz and transports to a roaring heavy metal track through heavy drums and distorted guitar. Cleverly, the track has moments of a Queen-esque rock style with multi-layered vocals. It’s really innovative the way The Darkness has tried to amalgamate these two rocks styles – and it actually succeeds. The track Mudslide is fun but doesn’t bring anything new or fresh. Sarah O Sarah is unmemorable and a rather boring ode. Conquerers fails to bring any interest in the album and really doesn’t feel adequate as a final track.
Overall, while no tracks seem to equate completely to the legendary I Believe In A Thing Called Love (I’m probably a little biased with that statement), this album is a great collection of tracks that explore many rock genres. Hawkins’ falsettos are a dream and every song is punchy, in-your-face and rough. While some of the tracks aren’t as strong as others, the band really tells a story within this album and they seem to have connected with their roots and musical inspirations. Their sound is still a lot of fun and the guitar riffs on the album are phenomenal.