Parkway Drive: Atlas

Industrious Aussies map metalcore’s future

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Under the radar, Parkway Drive have become one of the most important heavy bands of recent years. Without the media fanfare of BMTH or the commercial clout of a major label, Parkway have simply toured their arses off and churned out stellar release after stellar release to get where they are today.

Atlas is yet another such release that will only see the band’s fortunes rise higher. The punishing beatdowns and call-to-arms, throat-shredding vocals that the band have made their forte remain untouched but there’s a fresh sense of experimentation here, too.

The Slow Surrender combines a sludgy, doomy tempo with some unbelievable riffing for a song that’s unlike anything the band have recorded to date, the title track is all acoustic passages, dramatic strings and early Metallica lead guitars and, while Parkway generally stick to the blueprint that’s served them so well, Atlas also laughs in the face of all who have called them a one-trick pony.

Genuine, free of image schtick and uncompromisingly heavy, Parkway Drive’s fourth album is evidence enough that they’re one of the best metalcore bands on earth.