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‘We’re Just Normal Dudes’: Hegemonic Masculinity, Australian Identity, and Parkway Drive

Australian Metal Music: Identities, Scenes, and Cultures

ISBN: 978-1-78769-168-1, eISBN: 978-1-78769-167-4

Publication date: 4 June 2019

Abstract

Masculinity and heavy metal share a clear and well-documented relationship, with many of the key texts on metal centering around its representation of gender (Walser, 1993; Weinstein, 1991). Less discussed is masculinity in Australian metal, as Australian metal itself remains underrepresented in scholarly research. In this chapter we discuss the music, media and image of Parkway Drive – a popular metalcore band from Byron Bay, Australia – via a reading of two of the band’s feature-length rockumentary films. We draw on concepts and theories of gender (Butler, 2006), and public image (Leonard, 2007), as well as studies of Australian masculinity, specifically those pertaining to mateship, surfing, and adventurousness. As the metalcore subgenre has not been widely studied, this approach provides a basis for understanding the subgenre as well as its relationship to gender, commercial success, and Australian heavy metal, focussing on the decidedly Anglo-Australian representation of masculinity performed by Parkway Drive. We argue that the band typifies a distinctly Australian type of hegemonic masculinity, one that draws on discussion of Australian identity, beach culture and surfing. We further examine the band’s use of ‘rockumentary’ tropes to build their public image and to tighten affective bonds with viewers.

Keywords

Citation

Whiting, S., Klimentou, P. and Rogers, I. (2019), "‘We’re Just Normal Dudes’: Hegemonic Masculinity, Australian Identity, and Parkway Drive", Hoad, C. (Ed.) Australian Metal Music: Identities, Scenes, and Cultures (Emerald Studies in Metal Music and Culture), Emerald Publishing Limited, Bingley, pp. 55-70. https://doi.org/10.1108/978-1-78769-167-420191014

Publisher

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Emerald Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2019 Samuel Whiting, Paige Klimentou and Ian Rogers