British hard rock band The Darkness will make their long-awaited return to Cleveland on April 24th at the House of Blues.  They have not been in Cleveland since the very successful “Permission to Land” tour in 2003.  This throwback/glam rock band are sure to bring big guitar riffs, swagger and even a bit of humor to their show.

The band is supporting their 2015 release Last of Our Kind and they have dubbed this current jaunt “Back in the USSA.”  Bassist Frankie Poullain agreed to an email interview with NEO Music Scene to talk about his career and The Darkness’ upcoming show at the House of Blues.


Greg Drugan:  I had the opportunity to see you guys in Pittsburgh last fall and I am looking forward to seeing you again in April in Cleveland.  You put on a great rock and roll show!

Frankie PoullainThank you, I loved Pittsburgh, I still wear my ‘Steelers’ jockey shorts.

GD:  I really like the new record Last of Our Kind, it is a true rock record.  How many new songs will you be playing live?

FP:  However many we bloody well feel like. Ok….four or five.

GD:  Does the band vary the set list from night to night or do you basically stick to the same songs?

FP:  It’s a moveable feast; as anyone knows when you take the barbecue indoors after an unexpected downpour, there’s always a chicken leg that doesn’t make it for one reason or another.

GD:  “Everybody Have a Good Time” is such a great rock and roll song; is there any chance you might play it on this leg of the tour?

FP:  I’m glad you like it. But, personally, I don’t! It’s funny you should mention that one because it is literally the only song of ours that I actively dislike!  Music, eh?

GD:  Who came up the “Back in the USSA” title for this tour?

FP:  We had the image painted by a brilliant Japanese artist friend of Justin’s called Yukimo of the four of us in a Back to the Future scenario. I suggested ‘Back, Sack and Crack to the Future’ but we felt it was a little vulgar. We settled on ripping off the Beatles instead.

GD:  Who were some of your musical influences growing up?

FP:  A lot of the ‘80s mainstream was hard to like; MTV was very white when it started and there was something bloated and ugly about it all. Most of the good stuff was underground, but then the bands that started off great became awful – Simple Minds and U2 for example. The Waterboys and Kate Bush stayed great. I liked the Pogues, too. And of course the greatest artist of my childhood who wasn’t a kiddy fiddler was Prince.

GD:  Do you play any other instruments, and how did you decide to play the bass?

FP:  I started off on cowbell and once I’d mastered that everything else came pretty easily.

GD:  Do you remember the first record you bought with your own money?

FP:  The Police – Regatta de Blanc. Before that I just taped off the radio.

GD:  How did you end up meeting Justin and Dan?

FP:  I met Dan in Camden in 1996 through an advert in a listings mag.

GD:  What does drummer Rufus Taylor bring to the band?

FP:  Glamour, grit, good times, giggles and … girls. Sorry, but it’s true!

GD:  Are there any plans to record new music anytime soon?

FP:  You bet your bottom dollar! We’re very excited about the next album and we’re going to get it down when it’s hot; it’s taking shape already. It will be characterized by what Rufus brings to the band – blonde hair and big balls.

GD:  Thanks for your time! Please feel free to add anything you would like.

FP:  A bottle of Grey Goose Vodka, please.


Frankie and the rest of The Darkness will be at the House of Blues on April 24th.  You’re in for a great rock and roll show! Tickets are available at any Ticketmaster outlet and the House of Blues Box Office.  For VIP upgrades please go to


Check out “Last of Our Kind” below.

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Greg Drugan has been attending concerts since 1982 and has seen everyone from AC/DC to ZZ Top. Classic rock is his forte, but he is also well versed in alternative and pop music. When not attending concerts, Greg can be found teaching history, psychology and the history of rock n roll at a rural high school where he also serves as the head track coach. In his spare time, he enjoys traveling, reading and spending time with his family.