Metropolis Fremantle, WA
January 20th, 2018
Support: Polaris and Daybreak
What are you up to this Saturday night? Oh not much, just catching the biggest metalcore band in Australia the world play their most important album in its entirety. It is an honest challenge to articulate the intensity of this show without underplaying it. Parkway Drive returned to Perth for the Horizons 10 year anniversary tour and played it like it was their last. Having filled stadiums in Perth in previous years, it’s clear that the humble band far prefer playing to intimate crowds at sell-out venues; so that’s exactly what they did, tearing through the Fremantle nightclub.
The venue’s website indicated that Cursed Earth would be opening for the show, but it was actually locals Daybreak who came on stage to rip Perth a new one, and to what might be one of their biggest ever crowds. The hard/metalcore outfit were high in energy and got the sardine-packed crowd moving with not very much effort at all. Between the frontman’s raspy vocals and the backup vocalist’s metallic growls, the musicians showcased some great variety in their set – definitely big things to come from these guys.
Sandwiched in the middle were bloody Polaris who are rapidly becoming a household name for Australian metal. The band received an incredible reception from fans who were keen to get the pit going and fire up some movement. The production was pretty impressive for the Sydney-siders, filled with meaty breakdowns and a bookshelf of bangers, just one after the next. The band are very excited to be returning back to WA in April for a headliner tour.
One of the concepts of support bands is to ‘warm up’ the crowd – well what do you call it when you’re getting sweaty from everyone else’s sweat? Furnaced the crowd? Well the support acts furnaced the crowd in preparation for the almighty headliners. Parkway Drive rocked up with all guns freakin’ blazed man. The band ripped into the first few prolific tracks from Horizons like ‘Carrion’ and ‘Five Months’. To hear some of these tracks live with the performance budget the band have today was simply a treat. Each chord was a cute combination of crisp and decapitating. Punters were truly going berserk – moshing and crowd surfing in full force, with not a still person in sight.
Vocalist Winston McCall is an absolute beast, you can just watch him in awe as he spits out every lyric with what appears like no effort whatsoever. The man is a true showman as he pumps up the crowd and jokes asking if we’re “just going to go nuts for every single song, or what?” Parkway Drive were receiving the reception of that of an international band that hadn’t hit Aussie shores in a decade; but it’s true, this band has a very close spot in many hearts, given how they’ve shaped this genre.
The Byron Bay celebrities did something pretty cool – instead of playing full albums live like most bands do, by playing it and then throwing some newer bangers at the end, they chucked in their contemporary hits in between Horizons anthems. This was an excellent way to mix up the evening and keep the crowd on their toes, especially as most of us are so conditioned to the set-list that we would have otherwise predicted the entire set-list. Complemented by a bright light show and digital back-drop, Parkway Drive delivered hectically amazing renditions of tracks like ‘Vice Grip’ and ‘Crushed’.
A definite highlight of the evening was when McCall built up the introduction to ‘Dead Man’s Chest’ preparing the crowd for obliteration. Everyone knew what was coming and you could sniff the adrenaline in the air. As the renowned breakdown blistered outwards, the entire crowd were lifted screaming the lyrics “all hell breaks loose!” louder than Winston – it was incredibly cathartic.
This Aussie band have really paved the way for not only metalcore, but for Australian music, in terms of approach, being down to earth, and remembering their roots. They took the lead throughout the evening including stopping the show in its tracks instantaneously when McCall witnessed a fan in danger/being hurt. The band very comfortably ceased their instruments whilst the vocalist leant down very calmly, asked the punter if he/she was ok and during the recovery just took ownership to the crowd saying “when a man’s down, we stop the show” – and it was incredibly refreshing and sensible.
Parkway Drive left Perth with a delicious taste in our mouths, closing with ‘Bottom Feeder’ which destroyed the venue – just freakin’ loud man.
Gig Review by Ricky Aarons @rickysaul90
Parkway Drive – A Decade of Horizons
with guests Polaris
SUNDAY 21 JANUARY – METROPOLIS, FREMANTLE
TUESDAY 23 JANUARY – THE GOV, ADELAIDE – LIC / AA – SOLD OUT
WEDNESDAY 24 JANUARY – THE GOV, ADELAIDE – SOLD OUT
THURSDAY 25 JANUARY – THE GOV, ADELAIDE – SOLD OUT
FRIDAY 26 JANUARY – FORUM, MELBOURNE – SOLD OUT
SATURDAY 27 JANUARY – FORUM, MELBOURNE
w/ Alpha Wolf