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Justin Hawkins of The Darkness performs at the Hordern Pavillion, Sydney. 10/02/24 (IMAGE: Chris Neave)

GIG REVIEW: The Darkness Lights Up Sydney’s Hordern Pavillion

The Darkness’s Saturday night performance at the Hordern Pavilion in Sydney was not just a concert; it was a celebration of the band’s enduring appeal and their unmatched ability to captivate a crowd.

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Celebrating Two Decades of “Permission to Land”

The band marked the 20th anniversary of their debut album, “Permission to Land,” with a show that was both a trip down memory lane and a showcase of their timeless energy. Performing the album in its entirety, The Darkness brought to life hits like “Growing on Me,” “Love Is Only a Feeling,” and the universally beloved “I Believe in a Thing Called Love.”

A Fusion of Hits and Nostalgia

The evening was sprinkled with delightful surprises, including renditions of Led Zeppelin’s “Immigrant Song” and Phil Collins’ “In the Air Tonight,” with Dan Hawkins stepping up for an impromptu drum performance. These moments underscored the band’s ability to blend their setlist with unexpected classics, much to the audience’s delight.

The Charismatic Justin Hawkins

Justin Hawkins, ever the charismatic frontman, was a whirlwind of energy. His antics ranged from handstands and stage dives to crowd surfing, all while showcasing his impressive 5-octave vocal range and lead guitar skills. Hawkins’s performance was a testament to his unwavering showmanship and musical talent.

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The Cohesive Band Dynamics

The synergy among band members was palpable, with Frankie Poullain and Dan Hawkins laying down the rhythmic and melodic foundations. Rufus Taylor, the dynamic addition on drums, brought new vigor to the performance, seamlessly integrating into the band’s iconic sound.

Honoring the Support Acts

Triple M’s review would be incomplete without acknowledging the support acts that set the stage for The Darkness – Cry Club, DZ Deathrays, and You Am I. In particular, You Am I’s tribute to Spinal Tap, complete with a mini Stonehenge, was a highlight that resonated with the audience.

A Night to Remember

As the event came to a close, the energized crowd, still reveling in the night’s euphoria, merged with fans exiting P!nk’s adjacent show, illustrating the diverse appeal of live music. It was a vivid display of the unifying power of music across genres and generations.

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