The British Invasion Continues As The Darkness Take Over Tempe, Arizona

The British invasion started on March 9 in Las Vegas and touched base in Tempe, Arizona on March 12, 2022. The Darkness hailing all the way from England performed at the Marquee Theatre with their power house all girl opening band The Dead Deads.

The crowd slowly piles into the Marquee Theatre, grabbing merch and drinks as they enter. They eagerly make their way to the stage, getting ready for the long awaited and anticipated tour! This tour has unfortunately been postponed for a few years now due to Covid, and boy was the crowd ready. All the talk about how amazing The Darkness has been in the past. It is truly amazing when people from all walks of metal and rock show up in one venue to witness the performance of an artists, it truly shows that sometimes one band can really touch people of different genres and unite them.

The first band to hit the stage was an amazing all female driving force of a band, The Dead Deads. The Dead Deads are a unique band from Nashville, Tennessee. What makes them unique is their sound; they are an amazing combination and twist of grunge, indie, classic rock and hard rock. The band line up consists of Meta- guitarist/singer, Daisy-bass, and McQueen-Drums. As they enter the stage the lights go dark, then all of a sudden when the first note is hit the lights come back on and they begin to take command of the stage. After the first couple songs end, Meta takes to the mic and begins to introduce her band to the crowd and she mentions their newest album, Tell Your Girls It’s Alright. As they continue on with their set, their energy is unmatched by other female bands. McQueen captivates the audience from her drum set. Not only does she play but she jumps up and continues to play while standing up. It is not hard to miss to see how much these women love the music and love performing. From the side of the stage, you can see Baja Dead, their Co-Ordinator, dancing on the sidelines.  “666 days, [that’s] how long it has been since being on stage, hail Satan! Thank you, this is our last song. It’s about reproductive rights and dead presidents!” Meta announces to the audience. As soon as their las song ends, McQueen destroys her drum set as she walks off the stage. The crowd was chanting “one more song”, something truly unique for an opening band to hear!

The house lights were on and the stagehands were finishing up setting up the stage, then all of a sudden, the stage was empty, all was quiet and the house lights dimmed. Everyone held their breath as the long-awaited final act was about to commence. The Darkness is comprised of Justin Hawkins- guitar/singer, Dan Hawkins-guitar, Frankie Poullain-bass, and Rufus Tiger Taylor-drums. The band has been together since 2000 and their most well renowned album, Permission to Land, was released in 2003 and it is still a hit today. This band has a long and complicated history ending in the band disbanding in2006 but luckily, they reunited in 2011.

The Darkness took to the stage, and the crowd erupted into cheers and screams! The first two songs they played were “Welcome tae Glasgae” and then “One Way Ticket”. As the second song ended Justin grabbed a bottle water and spoke into the microphone, “my mouth is dry, my lips are chapped, I wish to shed a tear, [but] I’m parched. I love Arizona!”. The crowd erupts into cheers, then he continues, “can I get a d?!” the crowd yells d, then he goes “can I get an arkness?!” and the crowd responds back with arknes, he then he yells “we are The Darkness!”

The third song starts, “Growing on Me”, and the band continues to play. Just really captivates the crowd, shimmying and dancing up down the stage while singing and playing guitar. Justin is great at interacting with the crowd, after the fourth song Justin notices a small group of people wearing British flag suites. He then proceeded to ask them if they were British and as they answered yes, he said “Do you feel like since moving to Arizona, it has intensified your patriotism [to England]?”. The Darkness continues playing their show, mixing it up with old and new songs. After song 6, “Gimme Your Love”, he asks the crowd if there are any kids at the show and asks the parents to raise them up. He then proceeds to give the kids a guitar pick. They then play “Givin It up”, after they play a couple more songs Justin disappears from the stage, he reenters the stage wearing a shimmery gold fringed, open chest V-neck body suite. As the night wears on just keeps interacting with the crowd, this time he directs his attention to a male in the audience wearing a bright pink polo. Justin states “That fuchsia shirt is nice and not because it’s the bright color that draws you in but its this area” (as he points to the V-neck opening on the chest of the polo. The audience laughed and enjoyed this interaction and conversation with Justin. The next bit of interaction comes from Taylor, he takes his tank top off and throws it from behind his drum set into the crowd, a lucky member in the audience got to walk away with the sweaty shirt from their talented drummer. As their last song, “Get Your Hands Off My Woman”, ends just then armpit farts into the microphone generating laughter from the audience and the band leaves stage. The crowd chants “one more song” for the second time that night. All of a sudden Poullain walks out onto the stage and lifts his bass up to the microphone and drags the strings along the microphone up and down, and then he repeats this on the amp, producing noise and buying the band a little more time to come back on stage. Soon Dan, justin and Taylor follow suite, but Justin is dawning a new outfit. A black speedo, a black sailor style hat, aviator sunglasses and black booties. Their encore song is their beloved and probably their biggest hit, “I Believe in a Thing Called Love”. The crowd goes wild and begins to sing along to every word, and they watch Dan in awe as he nails the guitar solos. The Darkness was truly a magical treat to watch live, and what makes them so special is how much they interact with their fans, showing them their appreciation and gratitude.

The Darkness Setlist:

  1. Welcome Tae Glasgae
  2. One Way Ticket
  3. Growing on Me
  4. Motorheart
  5. Open Fire
  6. Gimme Your Love
  7. Givin It Up
  8. Black Shuck
  9. Solid Gold
  10. Hear Explodes
  11. Friday Night
  12. Love Is Only a Feeling
  13. Japanese Prisoner of Love
  14. Get Your Hands Off My Woman


  1. I Believe in a Thing Called Love


The Darkness
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The Dead Deads
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The Marquee
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