The Darkness, back in the saddle and running full speed ahead after a long hiatus in the mid-2000’s, came to Brooklyn Steel in the boonies of Williamsburg on Friday night where they proceeded to play forever – 18 songs in total – while rocking the house. How this show didn’t sell out is beyond me, and the fools who thought about buying tickets but didn’t missed out on one of the best performances I’ve ever seen. In fact, I had other plans for my Friday night and was going to shoot my 3 – then 4 – songs, stay for another few tunes and head out for the night. Justin Hawkins and the rest of The Darkness apparently did not want me to leave, because they were so good that I couldn’t bring myself to do so.
18 songs after it began, I found myself filing out into the streets of Billyburg with the now-inebriated masses of The Darkness fans, and I’m sitting here listening to them as I write this, thinking back to how much ass they kicked and how I’d been missing out on so many killer tunes – okay, look, I knew I Believe in a Thing Called Love, and that’s about it. They disappeared for 5 years, what do you want from my life? – by not following their career beyond the one song that was ever on the radio here in NYC, along with the fact that we went 6 years without a modern rock station to play their music after K-ROCK died a second death.
If you’ve read this far, you’re probably wondering what they’re playing. Okay, fine, I’ll bite. Open Fire, Southern Trains, One Way Ticket, All The Pretty Girls, Every Inch of You, Friday Night, Stuck in a Rut and Growing on Me were just a few of the 18 songs featured on the setlist, but the three-song encore was where the magic really happened – and now, I’m not talking about Justin Hawkins coming out without pants. I’m talking about Japanese Prisoner of Love, Love on the Rocks With No Ice (ice, pants. Same thing, right?) and, of course, I Believe in a Thing Called Love sandwiched in between.
And that was that. What I intended to be maybe 45 minutes of my night, at most, before going to meet friends turned into an hour and a half and never actually going to meet those friends, thanks to a band who was entirely too good to walk out on, plans or no plans. That happens, and I’ll happily sacrifice my Friday night for a great show by a band who surprised me with just how good they were. I’ve been missing out, and you did too if you weren’t at this one. Photo gallery highlighting the band’s shenanigans below.