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2018: Metal Hammer's ultimate preview

Everything you need to know about metal music over the coming 12 months

And here… we… go! 2018 is upon us, ladies and gentlemen, and with it comes a year ahead that looks set to be stacked with killer new music, exciting tours and the chance for some of heavy music’s brightest young names to step up and stake their claim to metal’s throne.

So, without further ado, here’s everything you need to know about the coming 12 months. Be it imminent albums, shows set to blow your mind or our own tips for the bands set to take the year for their own, this is the definitive guide to 2018. It’s gonna be big.

Heavyweight Champions

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Parkway Drive

Not only did 2015’s Ire mark a career-best album, but its jump into more arena-friendly song structures saw Parkway make a measurable step up in venues and festival slots around the world. This year will see the Aussie heavyweights try and make a further claim to metal’s throne – and it’s a chance the guys are grabbing eagerly.

“We are gonna be upping our game,” promises Winston McCall. “The Ire cycle was a massive amount of work, but it’s all been part of a bigger goal. In 2018, everything steps up and moves forward. We have gained so much momentum over the last couple of years, and we not only want to harness it but do it justice. There’s no point in slacking off; I feel as though there are now expectations of what we can do and could be capable of. We don’t want to just coast by – we want to blow everyone out of the water.”

While Ire heralded the most successful chapter in the band’s career, Winston is aware that it came from a place of great risk, and that the band may have to be similarly bold in their next steps.

“With Ire, we were basically walking a tightrope in the dark. We were very careful with the evolution of our sound, but at the same time we had no idea where it was actually leading us. The success that has come out of it has been amazing; it opened so many doors to us and we couldn’t be happier with the risks we took. Creating something that follows that success means stepping out of a great shadow, but the confidence in ourselves and our craft following Ire has been far more liberating than anything we have felt before. It’s given us a focus and drive we’ve never had when it comes to pursuing new sounds, and it was nice to see the validation that you could grow as a band, and still stay heavy, which is perfect for us.”

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