Mittwoch, 7. November 2012

Parkway Drive – Atlas

Parkway Drive have perfected metalcore. They are one of the leading bands in this often called dead genre. „Deep Blue“ was a huge success, the band’s best-selling record so far, and helped them literally tour the world. The band’s experiences have even been put together in a DVD entitled „Home is for the Heartless“.

So what can a band do after having set up such a high standard with a record? Two things: They either put out the same thing all over again, or they start experimenting. Experimenting is dangerous though: Too much differences will see fans turning their backs to your band.

But Parkway Drive did the right thing: Atlas features the typical high-quality Parkway-Drive stuff we’re used to. But it also features the exact right amount of novelties.

Songs like the pit-inducing "Old Ghosts/New Regrets“ and  "Swing, the more melancholy „Wild Eyes“, or the single „Dark Days“ are typical high-quality PWD songs - if you’re an old school Parkway Drive fan, you won’t be disappointed in any way.

But the second half of „Atlas“ shows the band in a way we've never heard them before. It begins with what for me feels like the title-track of the record: „The River“ starts off mid-tempo and semi-acoustic, builds up and culminates in a combination of Winston McCall’s screams and a clean chorus sung by a woman. If I may become really personal here: Together with the lyrics, this track is by far my favourite Parkway Drive song ever written.

Speaking of lyrics, in this area, the band also explores some new ground on Atlas: PWD speak out against societal and environmental problems. "The Slow Surrender“, also starts off semi-acoustic and features what sounds like DJ-scratches. „Atlas“, also in mid-tempo, experiments with strings and acoustic guitar.

Towards the end of the record, the Surfers from Byron Bay speed up again: "Sleight of Hand" and  "Snake Oil and Holy Water“ are the perfect wake-up slap at the end of the record.

So in a nutshell, props to Parkway Drive for trying out something new instead of doing the same thing all over again. Whether or not you like the differences - go find out yourself!

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