Melbourne queer punk rockers Cry Club, had the enviable position of opening for UK rockers, The Darkness, Tuesday night at Hindley Street Music Hall and with just half an hour to win the crowd over, they didn’t waste a moment. Showcasing tracks from both their debut and 2023’s Spite Will Save Me albums, they more than won over a few new fans on the night, with their impressive blend of rock and electronic pop. Based on set highlights including Wanna Wanna Wanna, People Like Me and I Want More, they’re definitely worth checking out if you get the chance.
To say it was a tense few days for local fans of The Darkness, in the lead up to the Adelaide gig (and indeed their whole Australian tour) would be an understatement, given both New Zealand dates over the weekend had to be cancelled due to a chest infection for lead singer Justing Hawkins. Thankfully with the exception of Justin toning down his stage antics a little to avoid any coughing fits, you’d never know he’d been ill. He was in incredible voice as the band kicked things off with blazing renditions of Black Shuck and Get your Hands Off My Woman, in a set celebrating the twentieth anniversary of debut album, Permission To Land. Hard to believe it’s been that long since I first saw them during their very first Australian tour as part of the 2004 Big Day Out.
Ripping through all the tracks from the debut in its entirety, albeit not strictly in album order, it was clear to see the boys were having a lot of fun revisiting not only album tracks such as Givin’ Up, Stuck In A Rut, Friday Night and Love Is Only A Feelin’, but also digging a bit deeper, to give us some great b-sides from the era as well. As a long time fan, it was really cool to hear the tracks Best Of Me, Makin’ Out, How Dare You Call This Love and more in a live setting. There were a few extra treats throughout the night too, with Zeppelin’s Immigrant Song making a brief appearance, before I Believe In A Thing Called Love blew the roof off to end the main set.
The band returned encore ready after the break in satin robes and boxers, however, not everything was as expected, as guitarist Dan Hawkins sat behind the drum kit to belt out a little of Phil Collin’s In The Air Tonight, with bassist Frankie Poullain joining on guitar and drummer Rufus Taylor (son of Queen drummer Roger Taylor) taking on bass duties for yet another B-Side, I Love You 5 Times.
An extended fifteen minute fist pounding performance of Love On The Rocks closed out the show and just like that it was all over, but what a night. Can’t wait to see them again back on our shores again and hopefully soon.