For those of you who stayed up to experience the ARIAs last night, chances are you were disappointed on several occasions, but more importantly, like me, you were furious when they played a mere 6 seconds of Parkway Drive taking out the Best Hard Rock/Heavy Metal Award for the evening, beating out their very healthy competition of Polaris, King Parrot, DZ Deathrays and West Thebarton.
Each year this happens (although they did televise Northlane‘s acceptance speech last year when they won but weren’t in the country) and every year the heavy music community and musicians feel ripped off when it comes to feeling included in such an event which says it aims to highlight the amazing work Australian musicians have achieved over the past year.
6 seconds. 6 fucking seconds was all Parkway Drive copped after winning the Best Hard Rock/Heavy Metal ARIA tonight. Not to mention no airtime of their winning announcement, their speech or even the other nominees in the category. And they weren’t the only ones either who were snubbed for more airtime for mediocre international artists who couldn’t give two shits about the Australian music scene.
Its hard enough making a name for yourself as a musician in Australia without the support of mainstream avenues and I know the ARIAs are a joke to some/most of the Heavy Music Community, but it would feel great to receive recognition for your work, even if just a nomination like what Polaris DZ Deathrays King Parrot and West Thebarton received. But did they score any airtime either? Nope. I’ve given up on ever seeing bands like this being asked to perform due to not fitting the demographic or interest of mainstream audiences, but fuck, they should at least be aired and given the same respect as others.
They say the Australian Music Scene is inclusive of all but sadly, every year, this isn’t the case for many bands in many genres. Something needs to change, maybe then the majority of the general public won’t criticise or slam the event each year it rolls around.
End Rant. – Browny
#ARIAs #SupportAusMusic #EqualityForAll
Posted by Wall Of Sound on Wednesday, November 28, 2018
But to completely ignore these bands and musicians (there were other categories that were snubbed in favour of giving more airtime to International Performers and Winners) is a massive slap in the face for equality. I know there’ll be a few people who are saying “Browny, why do you even give a fuck, it’s the ARIAs!!!” and to that, I say: “It’s out of principle”. This is a show which says it showcases Australia born and bred talent (plus a few adopted Kiwis) and because a band/musician/group don’t fit their perceived mould, despite the fact they’re obviously killing it in Australia and beyond, they still, each and every year, ignore them.
Put it this way, you want your favourite bands to receive recognition right? I’m also sure the bands nominated want to be stoked about receiving a nod too, the Polaris boys and West Thebarton gang for example. It’s their first ARIAs Nomination, they would have all been on cloud nine at the event (and according to most of their Instagram stories they were LOVING it), but not only did they not get a televised acknowledgement or mentions on the Red Carpet shows etc they were also seated wayyyy up in the nosebleed sections like they’re some kind of common folk, hidden away from society.
There’s a big problem with this and as I’ve said before, its fucking hard for a band to build a fan base and following on their own without the assistance of mainstream media (radio and tv) but when they get there, it’s absolutely, positively worth mentioning. Mainstream won’t give a shit about it, but they also don’t understand the power and potential they have to support and nurture these bands/artists to help them reach a much wider audience with the incredible talent they have behind them. #1 Debuting Albums, Sold Out Tours and Global Recognition mean NOTHING to them and that’s the disheartening thing for bands here. Don’t try to preach the “it doesn’t fit the mould of mainstream” because the only reason it doesn’t is because mainstream media refuse to give them a platform to be heard by millions.
Luckily Parkway Drive drummer Ben Gordon had his acceptance speech posted on Twitter hours after the award was drawn and even he knew there was an issue with the snubbing, unbeknownst to him that his speech wouldn’t see the light of day on tv:
“Thank you ARIA for including this category because it deserves to be here. Australian metal bands and heavy metal is killing it at the moment overseas, bands are selling out venues all over Europe and headlining festivals, there’s many [Australian] bands killing it. So it should be acknowledged and recognised.”
— ARIA (@ARIA_Official) November 28, 2018
We, the heavy music media, will always champion our local talent because we seem to be the only ones down under who appreciate the homegrown talent in our own backyard and it’s one of the only ways the bands within the genre will receive any kind of acknowledgement for their work, but it should come from all sides. Having worked in commercial radio for 10 years, I know first hand the power radio can have to make an artist and help propel them to success if they just gave a shit about them for more than a couple of seconds or a one-off special here and there. Its one of the many reasons why I left the radio game to focus all my time and efforts into this site and what we’re trying to achieve for local and international upcomers and established bands.
So much more needs to be done before we’ll all be on a level playing field, but if we continue to discuss the inequality experienced in the music scene (not just for genres, but gender inequality too), then maybe they’ll start listening. It’s a long shot, but hey, we’re all in it for the long haul right.
— P O L A R I S (@PolarisAus) November 28, 2018
— I OH YOU (@iohyouforever) November 28, 2018
Congrats to Parkway Drive for taking out the best hard rock/heavy metal album at the ARIA Music Awards 2018! Congrats to Squizzy for making the Channel 9 news! 😂🔥😂🔥😂🔥
Posted by King Parrot on Wednesday, November 28, 2018
Well done and congratulations again to Parkway Drive for their win and to the likes of Polaris, King Parrot, DZ Deathrays and West Thebarton as well as all of the other artists who didn’t get their time to shine and on top of that, all of the other Australian artists who did. We have an amazing amount of talented individuals and groups/bands within the country right now who continue to excel on a daily/yearly basis and Australian Music is in such a good place right now. Let’s keep nurturing it from all angles.
Written by Browny @brownypaul