Today we’re heading over the Tasman Sea to New Zealand to catch up with Wall of Sound reader, Northlane sweater, aspiring hardcore musician and future-liver Ethan Downey-Parish for an insight to his year with COVID affecting New Zealand, the plans that got pushed to the side and the music he listened to which in turn helped him get through the year that was!
TOP 10 RELEASES OF 2020?
This year had some great releases so it was very difficult for me to narrow it down to only 10!
10 – Higher Power – 27 Miles Underwater
9 – Bring Me The Horizon – Post Human: Survival Horror
8 – Justice For The Damned – Pain Is Power
7 – Alpha Wolf – A Quiet Place to Die
6 – The Acacia Strain – Slow Decay
5 – Misery Signals – Ultraviolet
4 – Bloom – In Passing
3 – Defamed – Aeon
2 – Currents – The Way It Ends
1 – Loathe – I Let It In and It Took Everything
TOP 10 SONGS OF 2020?
10 – Full Bloom – ‘In Between’
9 – Bloom – ‘Daylight’
8 – Spiritbox – ‘Holy Roller’
7 – Alpha Wolf – ‘Restricted (R18+)’
6 – Falcifier – ‘Dog Eat Dog’
5 – Darko US – ‘Insects’
4 – Make Them Suffer – ‘Erase Me’
3 – Currents – ‘A Flag To Wave’
2 – Defamed – ‘Circles’
1 – Loathe – ‘Aggressive Evolution’
BEST MUSIC VIDEO OF 2020?
It would definitely have to be Alpha Wolf – Akudama! When I saw that Ben from Third Eye Visuals was involved I knew it was going to be a great one!
LAST GIG YOU SAW BEFORE COVID
I was lucky enough to see Regulate and ColdxWar just before the borders were closed. I had a feeling Regulate was going to be the last international act to see live for a long time. Was awesome to see them play alongside one of my favourite New Zealand bands, ColdxWar, who also got to open for Knocked Loose at the start of this year.
Over in New Zealand we have been very lucky to be able to attend shows again not long after our big lockdown with some great New Zealand bands! And it didn’t require us having to be all seated!
BIGGEST THING YOU LEARNED ABOUT YOURSELF IN 2020
I definitely noticed that I struggled during lockdown when I didn’t have a set routine. But later on in lockdown, I did learn more about myself in regards to what helps keep me going when I’ve had some tough days. Getting the chance to go out on my longboard while listening to some music helped refresh my body and my mind a lot instead of being inside the whole time which can make things worse.
Also never being afraid to reach out to others when life is getting tough.
NEXT BIG AUSSIE/NEW ZEALAND BAND TO WATCH IN 2021?
Bloom for sure! The EP they dropped this year was a favourite of mine and I’m sure once the world is back to normal they will be getting the chance to be on some big tours! Would be so good to see them open for Counterparts!
Also have to throw in a New Zealand band that deserves some recognition, Seas Of Conflict! I would see these guys play a lot since going to local shows when I was younger. Every time I see them live they just keep getting better and better! I’m sure they have some great things planned for 2021!
FAV NEW BAND YOU DISCOVERED IN 2020
Defamed who only formed this year. Made up of former members of Drown In Sulphur, they dropped their first track ‘Circles’ in March and I was instantly hooked on their music. If you enjoy the heavier side I highly recommend giving them a listen
WHAT ARE YOU MOST LOOKING FORWARD TO IN 2021?
For me, I’m looking forward to attending and playing more shows. Also releasing some new music with my band Amanaki at some point in 2021! Fingers crossed it won’t be too long until I can fly over to Australia to attend some more shows and possibly play a show over there if I’m lucky
Words by Ethan Downey-Parish. Insta: @ethandowneypa