Justin Hawkins The Darkness

The Darkness have said if they don’t start work on their album soon they’ll be “shooting themselves in the foot”. Speaking on a recent trip to Ireland, singer Justin Hawkins said recording of the band’s follow-up to ‘Permission To Land‘ will start in earnest later this year, and the group are conscious of the pressure to give fans some new material as soon as possible.

Only one new song was played at T In The Park (July 10) but the group were linked with AC/DC producer Robert ‘Mutt’ Lange for recording sessions earlier this year. However, it is unclear if they actually went into the studio with him.

Justin Hawkins said: “We’ve tried writing on buses and planes and barns and country retreats and in people’s flats and stuff. The important thing is that we’re relaxed. If we’re totally relaxed and writing songs because we’re enjoying it then we’re fine.”

July said that the band have been “too busy touring” to fully focus on the new album. He said: ” We need to have a big break and just get back to being human beings and not media fools and start recording again. I’ve got a feeling we way have to after some of our schedule but fear ye not, the bells shall stand.”

His brother Dan added: “it’s been a crazy year because it’s taken off internationally. In America especially, it’s become a pop/rock crossover thing. So we do all the things that rock bands do but we’re also doing all the pop promo stuff that Britney Spears would do. That leaves us without a day off in the last year.”

Justin Hawkins concluded: “We need to stop the kids some more material. At the earlier opportunity we’ll start working on it and rest assured it will be like the last one but better. I think it’s also time to pay back our fans with quality new material pretty soon or else we’re shooting ourselves in the foot.”

Justin Hawkins has also hit out again at the Glastonbury festival, calling it “overpriced”. The band fell out with organizer Michael Eavis earlier this year when a row erupted over whether the band would play at this year’s event or not.

Justin Hawkins said: “(Eavis) went to the newspaper and accused us of being mercenary and looking for a million pounds to play at the festival which frankly isn’t true. The fact is what we approached them at Christmas time and they weren’t interested because they thought we were a novelty band and wouldn’t be around. Obviously, Reading booked us so when they (Glastonbury) came back later they had to match that offer or else we wouldn’t consider it.”

He added: “So Michael Eavis altruistically lets out all that land with the sole purpose of donating to good causes? Not at all for the purpose of raising his profile and making an absolute fortune out of an overpriced festival?”

© NME July 31, 2004

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