Parkway Drive release ‘Viva The Underdogs’ film for digital purchase

Frontman Winston McCall speaks to NME Australia about the revealing documentary

Parkway Drive have released their latest film Viva The Underdogs for digital purchase today (April 24).

The fast-tracked digital release comes after the film premiered in cinemas nationally this past January. Viva The Underdogs‘ soundtrack, featuring live recordings and German re-recordings of previous songs, was released in late March.

The film follows the band on the lead-up to their headlining set at German metal festival Wacken Open Air. It’s now available for purchase from digital platforms, including Amazon, Google and Vimeo.

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Watch an extended trailer for Viva The Underdogs below:

Even with a director and full creative team on board for Viva The Underdogs, vocalist Winston McCall is the first to admit that the band “underestimated how much work had to go into this.”

“It had been a while since we’d done anything visual,” he said, speaking to NME Australia from his Byron Bay home earlier this week.

“There’s so many more gears turning in this machine these days. To put all of this work into it, and to then have it come across the exact way that you wanted it to – in a medium you’re not well-versed in – is a really nice feeling. It’s very buoyant, in a way.”

Viva The Underdogs was directed by Allan Hardy, marking his feature film directorial debut.

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Having worked on music videos for artists such as Dune Rats, Twenty One Pilots and Bliss N Eso, Hardy was originally hired to work on Parkway Drive’s music video for ‘The Void’.

Hardy had no prior experience with heavy music. “He came from completely outside of our world,” said McCall, “and he could still see something in us and in the band that was really interesting.”

“We really wanted to hone in on the idea that this was a movie that would come from an outside perspective. The problem was that we’re so deep inside this world that we have trouble discerning between what’s just interesting to us and what’s actually interesting. Allen was able to get out exactly what we wanted, so we put our trust in him.”

Viva The Underdogs is the third documentary made on the band. It follows on from Parkway Drive: The DVD, released in 2009, and 2012’s Home Is For The Heartless.

When questioned on what has stayed consistent with the band portrayed in those three completely separate stages of their career, McCall’s answer is simple: “The ethic, and the people.”

“We still come from the exact same place,” he said.

“Obviously, this music and this band have just grown and grown – and we’ve grown with it, as people. Our personal growth is a companion to the music that we make.”

“It’s very hard to explain to people how we’ve gotten to where we’ve gotten to. Their only interaction with us is the music we put out every couple of years, and coming out to see us at shows. The five of us have been living this band, every single day, for 17 years.”

2020 was meant to be a banner year for Parkway Drive, kicking off with the cinematic release of Viva The Underdogs and then a world tour in support of it – which would have included their first-ever Australian arena tour.

With all of their dates either cancelled or up in the air due to the pandemic, however, the band are making use of their new-found downtime by reflecting on their next move – and potentially, laying down the foundations for album number seven.

“There’s been a massive amount of growth in the time of just one album cycle,” McCall said.

“With this movie out there, we’re able to really put a date on things and see how much things have changed. A year ago, things were completely different. We have goals set now, and our next step is to put them into action.”

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