Considering UK metalcore troop Asking Alexandria are based a few miles down the motorway in York, the slightly mental reaction from the sold-out venue is understandable. Following the more hardcore stylings of Stick To Your Guns, the modern metalcore sonic assault unleashed by Asking Alexandria is more in tune with most of the young audience here and by the end of their forty-five minute barrage of riffs and breakdowns and returning frontman Danny Worsnip’s new found cleaner singing style, the O2 Academy has warmed up nicely for the headliners
“It’s been ten years since we first played here at Joseph’s Well,” recalls Winston Mccall halfway through their set and prior to the band launching into a venue-flattening rendition of “Boneyard”. His band have come a long way in ten years and here, at another sold-out date on their current UK run, his band showed they’re on the cusp of metal greatness.
Despite a slightly downsized stage show for tonight’s gig (meaning no revolving drum cage) everything else about this show screamed “arena band”. From the pyro to the lighting show to songs like “Karma”, “Carrion”, “Dark Days” and “Destroyer” everything about Parkway Drive in 2017 tells you that you’re watching a band who have vastly outgrown the venues they’re playing. However, what puts Parkway on a different level to the rest of their peers is seeing how genuinely humbled frontman Winston Mccall is by the unwavering support from fans throughout eleven years of the band visiting the UK. “This is a Monday night? Fucking hell, what are your weekends like?” jokes Mccall during one of many moments throughout their set where he takes time out to address this particularly rowdy crowd.
Although more long-standing fans might be disappointed at the non-appearance of a few classics, with the set list weighing heavily with material pulled from their more recent albums, Parkway Drive showed how they have outgrown their “whatever-core” roots and, as demonstrated by this slick, flawless performance, are very ready to take modern metal to the next level.