Review by Robin Olssen
It’s been just over five years since I saw these guys at Annexet in Stockholm last time. This time the band were headlining the second of three days at the Getaway Rock Festival in Gävle. I drove up to Gävle (5 hour drive) with three of my friends and arrived the day before the concert. We set up our tent at the camping and drank a couple of beers. Later on the evening we watched Papa Roach and Bullet for my Valentine. Papa Roach wasn’t really my cup of tea, but I like some of Bullet for my Valentine’s songs, unfortunately most of “my songs” were dropped from their setlist! Next up: Alice Cooper. Unfortunately we decided NOT to see him(!) and headed back to the camping.
I woke up early the next day. The Darkness were to play 23:00 PM and i was counting down the hours – “11 hours left… 7 hours left… 5 hours…” I left the camping about an hour before the show and got to the second row right in front of Justin. About 15 minutes before the were to play Joey DeMaio of Manowar entered the stage and confirmed that his band was to play the festival next year; I couldn’t care less – I wanted Darkness! The “Arrival” intro finally came on and the band appeared on stage at the end of the intro. Dan took his guitar and started to play the opening chords of “Bareback” while Justin was clapping along furiously. “Black Shuck” soon followed and it was around this time I was pushed forward to the front row due to the pressure – I didn’t mind at all!
Justin then took of his jacket and revealed a “Tre Kronor”-tshirt whilst having his usual stage banter: “Gimme a D! Gimme an Arkness!” Shortly afterwards the band started to play “Get Your Hands off My Woman”. During Dan’s solo Justin did a head stand in front of the bass drum. The first song off the bands second album was “One Way Ticket” which featured Frankie on a cowbell! The said song sounds, imo, much better this time around than it did in 2006. I had already heard the three new songs that the band had debuted a month or so earlier via YouTube. Of these songs “Nothing’s Gonna Stop Us” were my least favourite, but after tonights performance this song really stuck to my head!
Justin introduced a “special man” – “Eddie Graham behind the drum set!” They then played “Love Is Only a Feeling”, complete with confetti rain. A few songs later it was time for the next two new songs: “Concrete” and “Cannonball”. Justin left the stage during the latter song and came back on with a catsuit complete with a tail. Both of these songs went down really well. Four songs from “Permission to Land” followed. The crowd went nuts when Justin started the opening riff to “I Believe in a Thing Called Love”. The band left the stage for about 30 seconds and then came on declaring that they were about to play their last song: “…and don’t forget next year Man of War is playing!” A ten minute version of “Love on the Rocks With No Ice” followed and then the concert was over. I went back to the camping and fell asleep one hour later with a smile on my face!
Setlist: Arrival (intro) / Bareback / Black Shuck / Growing on Me / Get Your Hands off My Woman / One Way Ticket / Nothing’s Gonna Stop Us / Love Is Only a Feeling / Friday Night / Is It Just Me? / Concrete / Cannonball / Stuck in a Rut / Givin’ Up / I Believe in a Thing Called Love / Love on the Rocks With No Ice