By Andrea Ramirez-Maciolek, Rock At Night Philadelphia
Album Review: The Darkness’ Easter is Cancelled-Release date October 4, 2019
A Message From The Darkness
You are about to embark on a journey to a realm where rock-n-roll is the hero and just about everything that crosses it’s path is the antagonist. In a faraway kingdom where the imagination of The Darkness along with their slicing metal guitar riffs reign supreme, Easter Is Cancelled is the band’s latest musical opus.
Releasing October 4th via Cooking Vinyl, Easter Is Cancelled is The Darkness’ first concept album. The ten-track record produced by Dan Hawkins (who also produced the band’s 2015 release Last Of Our Kind), examines the role of the musician in the barbarous culture of the world today, and their almost divine responsibility to challenge the establishment. Still, the album’s message manages to stay grounded with tales of love, loss and heartbreak, where redemption is ultimately found in the brotherhood of band friendship and the power of the guitar.
The musical adventure begins with the opening song “Rock and Roll Deserves To Die” which starts with a medivalesque feel reminiscent of Zepplin’s quench of Lord Of The Rings. If you can get past the impressive high-pitched vocals which are tastefully adorned throughout the album, you can see the genius behind the entire project based on this heavy hitting opener. The song is not only the longest track of the album but it also serves as the foundation of the album giving you a taste of what’s to come. Layered with soft and heavy musical textures it is easy to tell that the hero in this concept album is going to be the guitar.
After listening to the second track of the album, “How Can I Lose Your Love”, you are probably trying to figure out whether or not this album is comedic satire or an ingenious rock opera (I choose the latter) with the most exciting of guitar riffs you have ever heard. “How Can I Lose Your Love” takes the guitar to center stage again, continuing in the “guitar hero theme” found throughout the album. Without a doubt after listening to the second track, who cares if the album is honestly good satire….or not, you begin to dissect The Darkness for who they are, a truly magically talented band with a truly magical album. After all, The Darkness have always challenged the status quo, standing in limbo between serious and fun. To love The Darkness is to respect them for their musical talent while ridding along with all their imaginative and entertaining flair.
“Deck Chair” is the fifth track of Easter Is Cancelled. The song is the shortest track in the album showing the softer side of our protagonists. It is quite a lovely ballad, the lightest song on your ears in relation to the other tracks. A romantic piece with some comedic relief in it’s lyrics, “Deck Chair” displays the bands ability to transition between loud and soft while masterfully balancing between heartfelt and comedy. The Darkness once again challenges those who can’t seem to qualify them into a proper musical aesthetic.
Following “Deck Chair” is the album title song “Easter Is Cancelled”. The song is ambitious, full throttle metal goodness with vocals to gain the envy of 80’s hair metal siren masters. As with most of the songs throughout the album, “Easter Is Cancelled” finds itself sounding like a lot of other bands mashed up in a metal musical fairy tale. “Easter Is Cancelled” sounds like an 80’s metal anthem while transitioning into some classic Rush-like qualities. Weird comparison, yes I know, but this mashup of genres, and metal bands is exactly what makes this album ingenious. You may hate to love them, or love to hate them but The Darkness definitely captures your attention which is to me what makes a very successful album.
“We Are The Guitar Men” is the closing song to our metal saga. The song ties together the symbolism of guitar warriors found throughout the album. The song is anthemic with a killer guitar ending reminiscent to the “erupting” beginning to one of Van Helen’s popular songs. Undoubtedly one of the most fascinating and entertaining albums I have heard, Easter Is Cancelled far surpassed my expectations, wishing there were at least two, or three additional tracks to this rock opera. When “We Are The Guitar Men” came to an end, I realized I had to come back to reality and leave the realm of guitar heroes behind until, I came back and heard the entire album all over again and suddenly my world was good again.
Easter Is Cancelled Track List:
Rock and Roll Deserves To Die
How Can I Lose Your Love
Live ’til I Die
Easter Is Cancelled
Heavy Metal Lover
In Another Life
Choke On It
We Are The Guitar Men
Easter Is Cancelled will be released digitally and in full technicolor physical glory as a standard CD, digipak CD with bonus tracks, gatefold LP, limited edition color vinyl gatefold LP and cassette. The album is available to pre-order HERE from the band’s official store including special signed copies, deluxe edition and exclusive album bundle offers. The Darkness will be spreading their Easter Is Cancelled message across the land with a full North American tour kicking off in Spring 2020. The band is set to play UK and European headline dates this winter. You Can Check out the latest video releases from the Easter Is Cancelled album below.
Check Out The Darkness Here: