I remember reading about Parkway Drive in Kerrang! on my way to Copenhell 2018 and thinking there was no way they could live up to the hype. Then, after I’d seen them in concert I declared to myself that I thought they were world beaters, able to go toe-to-toe with any band in the world. Now at Resurrection Fest was a chance to watch them again and see if the hype was real or I’d gotten it wrong.
….I was not wrong. Parkway Drive are one of the best bands in the world right now and look like they can’t be stopped on their road to world domination. They’re not here to take part. They’re here to take over.
The show started off with the press being cleared out of the media area, we just assumed the area was closing for the night because it was far after midnight by now after the delayed Slayer show earlier. However, emerging behind us we saw torch bearers lighting the way for a procession. I couldn’t believe it, the band was actually going to walk straight through the thousands of people to get to the front of the stage. I still have no idea how they got everyone to move but the tone was set for the night ahead as the band climbed over the barriers.
They get to the stage and it’s not long before it all kicks off. A slow melody for a minute or so for the intro vocals of Wishing Wells off 2018’s record ‘Reverence’, followed by Prey and then Vice Grip, all of which are individual sounds with great guitar riffs designed to get your head banging with hardly a breath between them.
At Copenhell they had the precision and the passion. At Resurrection Fest they added theatrics to the mix, from the entrance walk to the pyrotechnics, fireworks and orchestra (yes actual wind and string instruments being played on stage). We play on through the set with heavy explosive songs like Idols and Anchors from 2007’s album ‘Horizons’, then Writings on the Wall from ‘Ire’ followed by the devastating Absolute Power.
I’ve talked before about Winston McCall’s vocals, after writing my thoughts when seeing them at Copenhell 2018 I said “he holds the audience’s attention and won’t accept anything less!” and it just rings so true this year again. He is a tour de force of a frontman, one of the band’s most recognisable elements. And I definitely feel like Jeff Ling’s guitar parts were particularly exceptional and the guitarist himself was a lot more engaging with the crowd, mouthing along all of their lyrics! It’s always great to see when a band enjoys their own music.
By the time we get to the encore songs, Parkway Drive set Resurrection Fest alight. Literally. The whole stage was in flames and that’s before the fiery torch bearers entered the stage to add even more to the atmosphere. The diversity of entertainment Parkway Drive managed to fit into their slot would make you think they had played a full three hour concert on their own, they absolutely hit it out of the park and please bear in mind their set had been delayed by almost an hour so by now they were playing well past 2 a.m.!
There’s no denying it, Parkway Drive stole the show.
Idols and Anchors
Writings on the Wall
Playing Time: 90 minutes