The Darkness has announced that they have finished recording nine songs for their comeback album out in the spring of 2012.
This will be the first album since 2005's 'One Way Ticket To Hell… And Back', and frontman Justin Hawkins revealed that the band are expecting to finish recording the remaining tracks by the end of January in time to release the album on his birthday, March 17.
While speaking to Billboard, Hawkins said “[We've got] nine of the required songs done, all finished, all sounding shining and good. We've got about two weeks of recording in January, and bits of it are already going off to be mixed even as we speak, so it's kind of nearly finished now.”
The original line-up of The Darkness reunited earlier this year for a round of live shows, including an electrifying performance at Download festival (a clip can be seen on NME.com).
Hawkins' brother Dan added that the band had been looking to return to the "more organic rock sounds" of their 2003 debut 'Permission To Land', which spawned hit singles 'I Believe In A Thing Called Love' and 'Love Is Only A Feeling'.
"Rather than a big-name producer we decided to do it ourselves, as per the first record. We just wanted to develop the songs and make sure they were really spot-on and basically take a minimal approach across the board - apart from when we needed to go really over the top," he explained.
Material for the as-yet-untitled album was rehearsed in their Lowestoft hometown and recorded at Dan's home studio.
"Home is where the heart is," says Justin. "When you write songs, you need a grounding to set the stories in. There's a lot about small-town life. The album has songs about stuff that's happened to us in the town. [As for influences], it's AC/DC, Queen, Aerosmith, et cetera."
Little Mix beat off stiff competition from fellow finalist Marcus Collins to become the first band in the history of the ITV1 show to be crowned champions.
It is estimated punters will collect over £200,000 in winning bets after the girl group had been the favourites for several weeks, but it is the girl group themselves that are set to rake in millions with music tycoon Simon Cowell laying plans to turn them into the next Spice Girls.
The girls were very emotional, wiping away tears as they told of their delight after the decision at the packed Wembley Arena in North London.
The four girls won the public vote and beat hairdresser Marcus Collins, to the title. Gracious in defeat, Marcus said: "The girls really deserve it. They are amazing."
The girl band have already launched their attack on the charts with a rendition of Damian Rice’s “Cannonball”, which was chosen to be the winners track a few weeks ago. However, Little Mix weren't installed favourites to be Christmas Number One by bookies last night.
In recent years the X Factor winner has been the most fancied to be the festive top seller. But last night they were only made 9/4 second favourites behind the Military Wives track "Wherever you are".
Jessica Bridge of Ladbrokes said: "Little Mix will serve it up to the Military Wives in the battle for the Christmas Number One race. We still reckon Gareth and the Wives are in pole position for now, however."