Parkway Drive | Credit: Mike Lewis Photography/Redferns

APRA Music Awards Announce New Heavy Music Category For 2024

Ironically, in this industry, music’s loudest genre often falls on deaf ears. But it looks like that could be about to change. A brand new category will be introduced at the 2024 APRA Music Awards for the very first time, recognising Australian songwriters who’ve been achieving excellence in the field of heavy music.

“The introduction of the most performed hard rock/heavy metal category comes in response to popular demand from members and the music industry and has been created to acknowledge the significant commercial and cultural impact of the hard rock/heavy metal genres,” songwriter, performer and APRA board chair Jenny Morris said today in a press statement.

Parkway Drive – ‘Darker Still’

The nominees and eventual winner of the new award category will be determined by APRA’s number crunchers, who will whittle down the top homegrown heavy releases from 2023 based on royalties earned across broadcast, digital downloads, streaming and live performances.

The nominees are set to be announced on Thursday, 4th April. But to give you an idea of who could be in contention, this year’s ARIA winners in the hard rock/heavy metal category were Parkway Drive for their Darker Still album, with the nominee list rounded out by The Amity Affliction, DZ Deathrays, These New South Whales and King Gizzard & The Lizard Wizard.

The introduction of this new hard rock/heavy metal category isn’t the only change at this year’s APRA Awards, either. The “breakthrough songwriter of the year” category will also be rebranded to “emerging songwriter of the year”, in order to emphasise that “the recipients are in the process of establishing a foothold in the music industry, which is such a vital career stage to acknowledge”.

The 2024 APRA Music Awards will be presented on Wednesday, 1st May at the ICC Sydney, Gadigal land, with Gold Logie winner and Hard Quiz chief Tom Gleeson tapped to host.

Award-winning indie musician Jen Cloher and Noongar artist Bumpy have been named as guest presenters, while The Presets co-founder Julian Hamilton will serve as musical director for the very first time, curating a bunch of live performances for the show.

At last year’s APRA Awards, RÜFÜS DU SOL and Flume emerged as the big winners of the evening, with Flume taking out the peer-voted Song of the Year gong with ‘Say Nothing’, while RÜFÜS DU SOL took home Songwriter of the Year for their work on 2021 album Surrender and Most Performed Dance/Electronic Work for ‘On My Knees’.

The Kid Laroi (and Justin Bieber) picked up a couple of gongs as well, winning in the Most Performed Australian Work category and also the Most Performed Pop Work.

Further Reading

Australian Heavy Music Deserves More Recognition: A Polite Post-BIGSOUND Rant

Flume, RÜFÜS DU SOL and Sampa the Great the Big Winners at the 2023 APRA Music Awards

King Stingray, Spacey Jane and Flume Among APRA Music Awards 2023 Nominees

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