Verdict: 3.5 / 5
Many of us would have assumed the 80’s were long gone, not only in terms of chronological understanding of the world, but also in terms of a general cultural shift away from what we all know of that time. There were the bad things: the hair, the excess, the commercialization of music; the androgyny. But what The Darkness seeks to remind us is that there were also the good parts: the spectacle, the performance, the larger than life scenes, and the androgyny. With Hot Cakes comes a reformed band ready to show us that Glam Rock is still alive.
The Darkness had enjoyed some early success, before sadly suffering a rock and roll spiral separation, but with their first album since 2005, a wiser, more mature Darkness is presenting itself musically. In-between the energetic high-pitched performances on the album, several genuinely touching, bluesy style tracks also emerge, painted a more detailed image of the band.
Of course though, the main performance is when it comes to the classic rock. People often use that term to define all Rock older than a certain age, but when it comes to The Darkness, they show us that Classic Rock is also a genre, a style built upon the legacy of many decades of performances. It’s often said that the main talent of The Darkness is when it comes to putting on a true live performance, and that in person, their rock spirit is seen to be very much alive. This energy is transferred into the album, and the listener can very easily feel that honesty for themselves.
If there is one complaint to be made, it’s that Hot Cakes, while an enjoyable comeback album, does often suffer from too many tracks sounding the same, and with them blurring together over time. The mood is set sufficiently energetically high that you will still enjoy your time, but afterwards you may find yourself unable to name which song was which, or remember how they went. Nevertheless, pick up this album for a modern blast from the past.
PS. Especially if you plan to see them live with Lady Gaga at her upcoming World Tour.