One Way Ticket to Hell...And Backby The Darkness
From the moment the pan flute fanfare on "One Way Ticket" kicks off One Way Ticket to Hell...and Back, it's clear that the Darkness still believes that more is more. If anything, the band believes that even more is even better: with the help of producer Roy Thomas Baker, they make their second album incredibly glossy and expensive-sounding, with layers of sitars, marching drums, bagpipes, and tubular bells on top of their already-powerful guitars, drums, and keyboards (and, of course, Justin Hawkins' formidable falsetto). But while the band's excess succeeded on Permission to Land, it loses some of its potency here: nothing on One Way Ticket to Hell...and Back is as immediate as "I Believe in a Thing Called Love." The band's debut celebrated and inflated the rock clichés of sex, drugs, and partying; this album's best songs are about longterm relationships, getting clean, and balding. The soaring power ballad "Dinner Lady Arms" highlights the good-natured streak running through a surprising amount of the Darkness' songs, while "One Way Ticket" is an episode of Behind the Music, complete with cocaine snorting, turned into a pop single. More than occasionally, though, One Way Ticket to Hell...and Back just sounds unremarkable, despite the songs' elaborate sonics. Tracks like "Knockers" -- which should be a fool-proof Darkness song just based on its title -- and "Girlfriend" sound like they were made from bits and pieces of Permission to Land rejects, while overblown-yet-slight ballads such as "Blind Man" and "Seemed Like a Good Idea at the Time" sound too much like stale Meat Loaf. Still, there are moments when the Darkness still sounds like the smartest, dumbest band around: "Is It Just Me?" has a chorus that rivals their best; the flamboyant Celtic rocker "Hazel Eyes" shows off both Justin Hawkins' over-the-top vocals and his brother Dan's over-the-top guitar licks; and lyrics like "English Country Garden"'s "I cherished you and you tolerated me" show that the wit that made their debut so much fun isn't entirely missing on this album. Not so much a letdown as a comedown, One Way Ticket to Hell...and Back just shows that the giddy highs of Permission to Land aren't so easy to get the second time around.
- Release Date:
- Atlantic Uk
Performance CreditsDarkness Primary Artist
Dale Hawkins Guitar
Paul Buckmaster Conductor
Justin Hawkins Synthesizer,Guitar,Piano,Hammond Organ,Sitar,Vocals,Mini Moog
Stuart Cassells Bagpipes
Dan Hawkins Guitar,Drums,Tambourine,Triangle,Background Vocals,Tubular Bells
Ed Graham Drums
Richie Edwards Bass Guitar
Edward Graham Drums
Technical CreditsRoy Thomas Baker Audio Production
Paul Buckmaster Arranger
Steve Churchyard Engineer
Simon Dawson Engineer
Thomas Baker Producer,Engineer
Mark Wilkinson Cover Art
Andy Ackland Engineer
Nick Brine Engineer
Phil Tyreman Engineer
Frankie Poullain Composer
Devin Workman Engineer
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
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After hearing the new single "One way ticket" and the samples of the new album I'm getting the feeling this could be the end of The Darkness. I loved Permission to Land but I think they've lost the magic of that first album. I'll get the new album to see what the full length versions of the songs sound like, but I just get the feeling that I'm going to be disappointed with the results.
This is such an amazing album!!! If you are a TD or classic rock fan you will absolutely love it! Some of the stand out tracks are "Hazel Eyes","English Country Garden", "Is it just me?", and many more. If you are wise you will purchase this amazing album and give TD a chance.
When I first received the cd i thought it would be like their debut album: classic rock and cool guitar solos. But instead, most of the songs include more synthesizer than guitar solos. I think this is one of the reasons why the original bassist left the band. However, i still think some of the songs are quite catchy with their choruses, especially on the song "Girlfriend". Finally, the album is still very short and has only maybe 3-4 good tracks. So if you were a fan of their first album, check this album out but dont expect it to be a classic like "Permission To Land".
this album was a really good one. my favorite songs are one way ticket, is it just me, hazel eyes. i say go ahead and buy it
I believe the Darkness is quite possibly the most under rated rock band in the world. When "I believe in a thing called love" came out, people thought they were a joke. But they were wrong, very wrong. The first cd was fantastic and this is close to it, if not better. The rock is back with tracks like "Bald" and "Is it just me?" I think they have achieved a perfect hybrid of Queen and AC/DC in the track "Hazel Eyes." This album is fantastic. Definitely pick it up.