Must Destroy - 2003 - 38 minutes

Heavy rock can offer freedom in two ways. For fans there's the sense of rebellion the best songs and bands deliver when you crank them up. And to music snobs, it's a target to point and scoff as they congratulatethemselves for being 'blessed' with such taste and having the prescience to buy Dylan's 'Blood on the Tracks' when they were 10. The Darkness will pull in plenty of the latter; for those still hopelessly devoted to the genre, 'Permission to Land' has novelty record riffen all over it.

There are some class moments and The Darkness take their cues from the best, but running out of oomph halfway through a 38-minute record says they're not going to end up on 'Classic Albums' like many of their heroes. Singer Justin Hawkins voice sounds like he could have been a choirboy long after nature had taken its course, and while it works well on stuff as strong as 'Black Shuck' and 'I Believe in a Thing Called Love', 'Love on the Rocks With No Ice' isn't near as cool as the title while 'Holding My Own' recalls the work of poodle haired rockers.

Half of these songs deserve to be on any compilation tape, 100 bands still hanging around from the 80s could write way better than the others. This is fun but a million lighters away from Whitesnake's 'Still of the Night'.

Harry Guerin

Tracklisting: Black Shuck - Get Your Hands Off MY Woman - Growing On Me - I Believe In A Thing Called Love - Love Is Only A Feeling - Givin' Up - Stuck In A Rut - Friday Night - Love on The Rocks With No Ice - Holding My Own