The Darkness lead singer Justin Hawkins has described opening for Disturbed as his “worst experience as a support act.”

Hawkins made the revelation on his YouTube channel “Justin Hawkins Rides Again”, which now boasts almost 200,000 subscribers and contains a cool mixture of serious music analysis and fun hot takes.

When asked what his worst memory of being a support act was this week, Hawkins recalled his time with Disturbed in 2002. “The Darkness supported Disturbed at Brixton Academy. And I really love Brixton Academy; I think it’s probably my favourite venue,” he began.

“It was the worst and also one of the best experiences because people were just throwing stuff. But some of the things they were throwing were, like, shoes, bottles and coins and stuff. But the thing about coins is it’s money, so in a way that was a good thing, really. It’s funny, though, ’cause I was right at the front of the stage. It kind of made me perform more, which made them more angry.”

He continued: “And somebody — one of the Disturbed fans who… I’ve got a lot of time for Disturbed as a band, I think they’re just brilliant if you like that sort of thing. But one of their fans threw a piece of chewing gum that presumably had been in their mouth, and it actually landed in my mouth. It was just a brilliant shot. I had to respect it, really.

Despite coming in for some rough treatment, Disturbed’s David Draiman surprisingly wasn’t happy with Hawkins after the performance. “And then afterwards, David Draiman wasn’t very pleased with me,” he revealed. “I don’t know; I think I may have issued an admonishment to the throng, which didn’t go down very well with me. But what are you gonna do? Who gives a fuck? I’m just kidding.”

Draiman’s actions went against what Hawkins would have done in a similar situation. “When things like that happen… If a band is supporting my band and then our crowd is not very nice to them, I would always go and apologise,” he insisted. “That didn’t happen with Disturbed. I think it actually had the opposite effect and they were angry with us. But… not my problem.”

Love Metal?

Get the latest Metal news, features, updates and giveaways straight to your inbox Learn more

Disturbed isn’t the only act Hawkins has called out recently. He admonished Jon Bon Jovi’s recent vocal performances in another YouTube video, saying that “people around him need to tell him to stop” singing.

Australian fans will be able to see if Hawkins’ own vocals still live up to the test when The Darkness head Down Under for a headline tour later this year (see full dates here).

For more on this topic, follow the Metal Observer.

YouTube VideoPlay

Get unlimited access to the coverage that shapes our culture.
to Rolling Stone magazine
to Rolling Stone magazine