Download Festival 2009 - Castle Donington, England, 13th June 2009
|Event:||Download Festival 2009|
|Written by:||Baz Anderson|
Download Festival - Castle Donington, England, 12th-14th June 2009 by Baz Anderson (145)
Blazing sunshine once again greeted the happy campers to the second day of the festival. Saturday and Sunday the arena would open two hours earlier than the first day, and so it was somewhat of an early start to get down there for the first set of the day which was not to be missed.
Not to be missed as Tim Ripper Owens kicked off the proceedings of the second day with a setlist from all over the place. Most known perhaps for being Judas Priest's singer for two albums, he now has his first solo album out and so performed a few from there but this didn't stop him flaunting his leathery past. Performing also Judas Priest's "The Ripper" and also his own Judas Priest songs "Burn In Hell" and "One On One" he entertained the audience who were vocal and appreciative for the time of day. Closing with "The Green Manalishi (With The Two-Pronged Crown)" the Ripper had given one of the best starts to a festival day you could imagine.
Next up Five Finger Death Punch entertained a lot of people and seemed rather popular, but there is only so much super-masculine, sub-par metalcore a person can take. However Devildriver next took it to the next level drawing in even more people. A couple of years ago Devildriver played Download Festival on the second stage and apparently made the worlds largest circle pit. Unfortunately for them two years ago however, no world record officials were on hand to verify, but not today. Huge crowd, check. Crushing extreme metal, check. Guinness World Record people present, check. Suitable audience space - damn, no. That's right, the front of the main stage had a divide in the middle presumably for crowd control, and so instead of one massive circle pit, two large circle pits were created. Shenanigans aside the band put on a good show, but it would have been so much better if we could actually hear the bass drums.
Then was now, and now then was time for Hatebreed to strut their stuff and give us their hardcore edge. Entertaining for a few moments but forty-five minutes of the same thing repeated over was not so. Phil and company was back with Down to promote drugs and stoner metal and give a reasonably entertaining set, but many people had decided to wander off to the second stage where the self proclaimed kings of "evil disco" Static-X had drawn a huge crowd, so huge it was impossible to get too far in. Their industrial nu metal sounded great over the sound system, but singing "we're cold, we're so cold" was perhaps somewhat wishful thinking as amusingly in fact we were all burning. Good song choices from old and new albums ensured an entertaining set and a field of happy people.
On the main stage next it was time for some cheese. DragonForce blasted onto the stage with the amazing "Valley Of The Damned" from the first album of the same name, to which must have forced smiles all around the arena, but from there on almost all of the set was comprised of songs from the latest album, which are as uninspired, boring and repetitive as Dragonforce come. Disappointing from the point of view of someone who saw them live in their hay-day, and also half of the arena as people could take no more and just sat down. Do better next time.
Over on the third stage the joke thrash metal band Lawnmower Deth and splitting rockers Thunder had their time, but over on the main stage it was time to turn Donington into a huge rave. Pendulum played last year on the second stage, blew the audience away and got probably the most energy from the audience of the festival. This year they were back, but this time on the main stage and with an extra year of experience. Largely there was no difference apart from the music being much much louder, but once again the field erupted with people jumping and going crazy to this bizarre form of music that crosses electronic rock, dance and drum & bass. Highly popular band and good set.
It was now time for the most bizarre, strange, disappointing but also morbidly entertaining set of the festival. Yes, who else is going to be the most controversial act but Marilyn Manson. Stumbling onto stage Marilyn Manson kicked off with the opener of his new album which is a slow, quiet number, to which afterwards received almost no applause or noise from the audience. Something was wrong, oh that's right, Marilyn Manson was wrong. He appeared to have obviously taken some drugs before the show and it seemed as if he didn't know where he was. During songs his singing would be awful, missing out lines, most strangely towards the end of "The Dope Show", to which he warned the audience not to do drugs unless they got them for free beforehand, he just started saying "etc. etc. etc. etc..." into the microphone until the rest of the band cut the song short. Pretending to have sex with the floor, constantly dropping and throwing his microphone and constantly knocking into his band members he was quite clearly out of it to the disappointment of a lot of fans who had wanted and expected a proper show for their money. The setlist didn't contain many singles either apart from the obvious such as "The Beautiful People" and closing the set with his version of "Rock 'N' Roll Nigger" certainly gave the audience a musically bad show if not morbidly entertaining to see what he would do next. Poor guy.
The second stage may have been the best in the history of the festival, but that is when assuming the right number of people want to be there. One of the biggest inconveniences of the festival was the hugely popular The Prodigy being on the second stage. It seemed as if the whole population of Donington wanted to see them, and so it was practically impossible to get anywhere near the stage. Like Mötley Crüe the previous day it was possible to get a few songs before the headliner on the main stage started however, and so The Prodigy opened their set to thousands upon thousands on the second stage with the popular "Breathe" being one of the first songs. It seemed a shame to leave, but it had to be done.
Had to be done because for the first time at Download Festival, the mighty Slipknot would be headlining. Corey Taylor telling us this headlining Donington show is the show he has most looked forward to ever, the band exploded with a run of the first three songs from the first album, "(sic)", "Eyeless" and "Wait And Bleed". Flames along the back, raising drum set for the clown at the side of the stage and of course Joey's rotating and lifting drum kit in the middle. Band members all over the place, a lot of the time Pinocchio down with the fans getting his mask tugged at and greeting them still. The band seemed genuinely honoured and pleased to be headlining and as a result put on a fantastic show visiting all albums, but the first two most frequently. Everything sounds different live, where "Surfacing" may not sound as powerful live, songs like "People = Shit" make up for that sounding extra crushing. Slipknot delivered an action packed set that was no doubt many people's top set of the festival. If you get the chance, see this band live.
||Written on 16.06.2009 by Member of Staff since 2006.|
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