Parkway Drive talk Atlas on the eve of its release
STRINGS, choirs and trumpets. Three things you wouldn't expect on a Parkway Drive album. But that's exactly what you'll be hearing on Atlas, the follow-up to the hardcore band's 2010 release Deep Blue.
Atlas, released tomorrow, takes the Byron Bay five-piece beyond their home base and, as the name suggests, out into the world.
Winston McCall says they really pushed the envelope on this album, building on the DVD Home Is For The Heartless, which was released earlier this year.
"We've brought in sounds that bring it to a whole new level," McCall tells Pulse.
"It hasn't taken away from the Parkway sound though. You'll still hear that Parkway sound when you put it on."
After the success of the band's third album Deep Blue, which debuted at No.39 in the United States, No.2 in Australia, reached gold sales and won the boys an ARIA for best hard-rock and metal album, McCall says he isn't nervous about album number four.
"I'm interested," he says. "I'm interested to see people's response. That's the best thing about waiting to release something - seeing a reaction.
"I would be nervous if I didn't think we were sitting on something good, but this is by far the best album we've put out."
While the album doesn't follow a particular concept, McCall says the lyrical content is influenced by their time on the road, travelling to 42 countries, some which had never experienced a band of Parkway Drive's status.
"There's no one song that gives an indication of the entire record," he says. "The album title itself has two meanings - it was written over a time when we were seeing a lot of the world and we live in a particular time, in an age of internet power. The time when you could plead ignorance is gone. If you can see things going on in the world then this album is about pulling off the blindfold."
The boys started fresh with Matt Hyde (Slayer, Porno For Pyros) in the production chair in Los Angeles, with a profound effect.
"It was amazing," McCall says of their time with Hyde. "And the effect was massive. It was great to work with a new producer.
"Sometimes it can be awkward working with someone new but we just clicked straight away."
McCall says Hyde had a hand in so much on the record.
"He has such a wealth of knowledge," he says. "Particularly when it came to the extra musicians."
Believe it or not, McCall says laughing, Parkway don't know how to structure a string section.
"We wouldn't have been able to create the record we have without him," he says. "The people he managed to bring in to do strings was incredible.
"It was the first time we felt like we were 100% in control in the recording process in terms of being able to do what we wanted to."
Byron Bay gets the first chance to hear the guys' new material on the road when they play the Byron Bay in December.