SYNDICATE
Posted by: Dave on October 11, 2006 at 11:44 am

DarknessPhotoAccording to the British tabloid, The Sun, The Darkness frontman Justin Hawkins has left the band. The golden-throated, catsuit-wearing, rock god has fallen victim to a classic tale of excess. Right around the time the band’s debut album (2003’s Permission to Land) rocketed them to superstardom in the UK (and modest success in the U.S.) he started abusing cocaine and alcohol. In fact, he claims to have spent 150,000 pounds on cocaine since they became household names.

This August, Justin checked himself into rehab and claims to be clean now. The problem is, he doesn’t think he can continue in a touring band without reverting back to his addictive habits. He does, however, plan to record music again in some capacity.

Before The Darkness formed, Justin was actually a very successful jingle writer in the UK. When the band appeared on MTV2’s Subterranean, he revealed to us that the money from those ads essentially funded the group in the early days. Justin Hawkins is a gifted singer and songwriter. I trust that if he stays away from the rock and roll lifestyle, he can continue a very successful music career away from the limelight.

The Darkness, on the other hand, are screwed. They claim they will keep the name and find a new singer. This, of course, is a bad idea. Justin Hawkins is irreplaceable. Changing frontmen and keeping the name is never a good idea. Probably, the only time in rock history it actually worked was when Brian Johnson took over for the late Bon Scott in AC/DC. Otherwise, bands need to change their name and move on when a frontman leaves…because the sound and attitude almost always changes dramatically (see Van Halen, Anthrax, Black Sabbath and more).

I wish the rest of the guys in The Darkness the best of luck in their future musical endeavors. We definitely still need more arena-sized metal in music today.



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