The Year Ahead 2015: Who'll Carry The Torch?

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Heavy music is brimming with young bands ready to make the definitive step up to heavyweight status, and if the final months of 2014 were any indication, 2015 looks set to be the year where metal and rock’s young guns set the standard across the board. Three bands in particular made important moves in 2014, setting up what will surely be a vital 12 months to come.

Bring Me The Horizon ended their year with a bang in front of 13,000 fans at Wembley Arena, while Asking Alexandria and Parkway Drive were key summer draws in the US as part of Mayhem and Warped Tour respectively, before both headlined UK tours that took in considerably sized venues come the year’s end. In 2015, the sounds of these bands may not be similar, but their goals are the same: to record albums that will push them even further towards becoming household names in our world./o:p

Taking their sound into more mature hard rock waters on 2013’s From Death To Destiny, Asking Alexandria have already enlisted producer Nick Raskulinecz (Deftones, Foo Fighters) for their next step.

Contrastingly, Parkway Drive’s sound is their own and there’s little chance of them deviating from it. Parkway have reached popularity through being the premier metallic hardcore band of their generation and will follow up 2012’s Atlas this year with something similarly colossal.

“The idea for the next record is to really smash it in people’s faces,” laughs Parkway’s own Posi Aussie vocalist, Winston McCall. “We ended 2014 with the biggest headline shows we’ve done to date but we think that this band can go a lot further. We have a bigger scope and you’ll have to be living under a rock to not have this album come to your attention!”/o:p

Winston also has some thoughts on who he sees dominating the metal world in 2015: “The big one for me is While She Sleeps. I saw the video for Four Walls and I got goosebumps, and I think they’re gonna be something special. They’re gonna blow the roof off everything this year.”

Though they released new material in 2014, Bring Me The Horizon’s next musical moves are murkier than either of their breakthrough buddies. After triumphing all over the planet in recent years, their new track Drown was a departure to a more mainstream sound akin to 30 Seconds To Mars but, as murmurs begin to tout Horizon as future festival headliners, is that the direction that their next record is going to take them?

We doubt we won’t be seeing something significant from the Sheffield heavyweights, who have positioned themselves as alternative music’s biggest band since Slipknot. That’s no small mantle to hold, by the way./o:p

MICE, MICE, BABY

With a huge UK tour looming in March, we reckon OF MICE & MEN will be the year’s most definitive band. Luckily, they seem to agree! For a man who is sat backstage at the O2 Arena on the last date of a tour supporting rock megastars Linkin Park, at the end of a year that saw his band make huge strides towards being a mainstream metal concern, Of Mice & Men frontman Austin Carlile is remarkably calm about his future.

“You know, dude,” he shrugs, “we’ve long surpassed our ambitions with this band. We just wanted to get out there and play our music to people, and we do that. Anything else we get is just the icing on top of the cake.” We hope you like icing, Austin, because there is bound to be more of it. Put simply, OM&M are primed to be one of the definitive bands of their generation, starting in 2015 with their biggest headline tour of this country to date./o:p

“Oh, I’m so stoked for 2015,” Austin grins. “It’s so amazing to be headlining a place like Brixton Academy. We have new music coming out that we’ve just recorded, we also have some new music that we are going to record. We are doing Soundwave in Australia and some festivals in the States. We’re just excited to see the next step; everything is a stepping stone. You reap what you sow. There are things that we did years ago that we are just seeing the benefits of now. We just look forward to going into 2015 and doing what we’ve always done; touring and being taken more seriously and building. It’s awesome.”

It certainly is, and, when pushed, Austin is happy to reveal that his ambition for his band is growing along with their popularity.

“Of course I want to be that landmark band,” he almost sheepishly admits. “When I was growing up, rock music was huge. You think of Rage and Korn and Bizkit, that was what people listened to. It was on the radio and playing to huge crowds. Rock music needs to have that again; we want to bring that back. To make this music huge and cool and for everyone. We can make that connection with our music!”/o:p

ONES TO WATCH

Northlane

After drawing obscenely crazy crowds as support on both the Architects and Parkway Drive UK tours in 2014, not even a lineup change looks likely to derail the progress of Australia’s next big things. In fact, if anything, the arrival of new vocalist Marcus Bridge seems to have given Northlane a new sense of focus as they prepare to unleash the follow-up to 2013’s excellent Singularity. One of the latest arrivals in what seems like an endless wave of brilliant young bands from Down Under, expect especially big moves from them in 2015./o:p

THE KIDS ARE ALRIGHT

Metal’s future is looking just as rosy as its past…

MOTIONLESS IN WHITE gatecrashed the US album charts with Reincarnate in 2014… expect more live dates to be announced in the not-too-distant future.

UPON A BURNING BODY may have upset a fair few people with their kidnap stunt, but surely Turn Down For What is a huge festival moment in waiting for 2015?

This year will also see the biggest ARCHITECTS tour to date in March, with the band saying these will be the “best shows in our 10 year history”, as well as potential festival dates come the summer.

False Idols and Deceive And Defy suggest that the debut HACKTIVIST album is set to be a corker, and two more of the UK’s brightest hopes, EMPRESS AD and MALEVOLENCE, will release follow-ups to their excellent debuts. We have high hopes.

TESSERACT have signed with Kscope for their first new album with Dan Thompson back in the fold, while fellow innovators PERIPHERY’s imminent double album looks set to take them to the next level.

Meanwhile, BABY GODZILLA will be releasing their debut to wreck your room to in your own time. We Brits finally get to see WILSON live as they’ll be bringing “the fuckery worldwide” supporting Halestorm on tour (along with, we hear, some new tunes), and we’re hoping for a full menagerie of animal costumes to accompany the new KVELERTAK album.

We’ve been teased by a 20-second clip of a new song from LETLIVE, that had a touch of Nirvana to it (seriously!), and given that CROSSFAITH’s sold-out headline show at Koko is being released on DVD, demand for a new album and more live dates will be massive. Make it happen, lads!

Oh, and look out for debut full-lengths from UK underground supergroup COUNTING DAYS and drum’n’bass metal mavericks COLLISIONS. We anticipate something very special from both./o:p