Not just one of Australia’s finest band exports, Northlane are widely regarded one of the best hardcore acts in the world. Named after a song by Architects – a fellow metalcore band – Northlane formed in 2009 and has survived numerous lineup changes, the most notable being the departure of their original lead singer Adrian Fitipaldes who was replaced by Marcus Bridge in 2014. We sift through this chart-topping, award-winning, progressive metalcore outfit’s astonishing back catalogue to shine a light on five killer songs that punctuate their brilliant career to date. 

Metamorphosis (2010) 

Northlane first burst onto the scene with their six-track Hollow Existence EP. The band’s recorded debut, this EP is beautifully brutal, immediately captured the nation’s attention and ultimately led to the Sydney band signing with top-notch, heavy-centric indie label UNFD in 2011. To this set of ears, Metamorphosis – a djent/progressive metalcore masterpiece, which generates a terrifying atmosphere – is the jewel in this EP’s crown and an excellent kick-off point for Northlane novices. 

A re-recorded version of Metamorphosis also found its way onto Northlane’s debut album release, 2011’s blazing Discoveries. Lyrically, Metamorphosis sees our protagonist smashing through obstacles “with a heart of gold and a mind of steel” before ultimately prevailing: “I will be whole and I will overcome this suffering… I will remain/ Nothing you say can take this heart away from me.” 

Dream Awake (2013)

After Northlane’s OG vocalist Adrian Fitipaldes bowed out, the band auditioned for his replacement. Check out Marcus Bridge nailing his rendition of Dream Awake (from Northlane’s second album, Singularity), expertly demonstrating his uncanny ability while singing both clean and unclean vocals:

No wonder he got the gig, right!? Cue an endless whirlwind of exciting times for Marcus, who has since grown from strength to strength during his eight years fronting Northlane. 

As the top YouTube comment under the audition video so aptly puts it: “You’re going to get a lot of haters, my friend. But keep your head up. You’re insanely talented, and I believe Northlane made the right choice. Congrats.” 

Intuition (2017) 

The lead single from Northlane’s outstanding ‘surprise’ fourth album Mesmer, Intuition was debuted at the annual UNIFY Gathering festival – “a celebration of good friends, great times and heavy music” put on by the band’s record label – the day before its release. Footage from this performance was then edited quicksticks to become Intuition’s accompanying music video. 

At UNIFY Gathering, posters featuring Intuition’s chorus lyrics (“Wander/ Question/ Find your obsession”) decorated the festi’s site – a teaser for punters who had no idea what it was all about since the song wasn’t even out yet. 

And Intuition’s opening lyrics are just as relevant as ever in these fucked-up times we’re currently living through, five years after the song’s initial release: “Why/ Do we subscribe/ To a universal thread/ That weaves the fabric of our lives/ Ask why/ Without batting an eye/ We’re so accepting/ Question everything…”

Bloodline (2019) 

While writing Northlane’s harrowing fifth album Alien, Marcus opened up about his traumatic, violent upbringing at the mercy of drug-addicted parents.

“I was raised in Hell/ I made it out by myself… Bad blood runs wild and free” –  Bloodline bucks and leers, guiding our thoughts to the unimaginable terror of fearing your genetic makeup as the product of violent, junkie parents. This song’s accompanying film clip comes with a viewer discretion warning, which is perfectly understandable given its graphic images and disturbing themes. 

We absolutely love that Bloodline provides hope for those who may be facing similar challenges in life. Marcus rose above his sketchy start and broke the cycle of abuse, which means they can too. 

Clockwork (2021)

This lead single from Northlane’s chart-topping latest sixth record, the self-produced Obsidian, features possibly the best-ever breakdown to signal Wall Of Death mayhem just beyond its two-and-a-half-minute mark. And Clockwork is also lyrically career-defining: “These are lonely words/ Barely on the page/ I’ve a million thoughts but I can’t let them escape/ I’ve got this barrier/ Screaming inferior/ Am I a saboteur lost in the fear/ That I’m destined to fail?” – I mean, are we absolutely certain that’s not Shakespeare!? All hail, Northlane! 

Saturday, November 26
Racehorse Hotel, Booval QLD
Tickets here