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  MY TEN YEARS AT DOWNLOAD FESTIVAL
Xander

Xander



"As we all know this year is Download Festival's tenth birthday and having been every year I thought it worthy of an article to reminisce over the last few years at Donington.

I'd never managed to go to a Monsters Of Rock Festival so my personal experience at Donington Park actually started in 2001 when Stereophonics had their 'Day At The Races' event. I wasn't a big fan of the band but liked them enough to go for the opportunity to go to the historic site. The line-up also included Ash, The Black Crowes, Proud Mary and The Crockets. Great weather all day and camping was available but when I lived seven miles away I thought it pointless. The Rock And Blues Festival was also held this year at the park too.

1 Day Ticket: £25 | Bands Seen: 5/5

Article continues below...



2002 saw the Ozzfest Tour take over the park for one day with two stages, opening with AntiProduct and headlining with Ozzy on the mainstage, but due to the outrageous bottle neck to the second stage in the exhibition hall, I never managed to see a single act there.

I was one of the lucky few that managed to get a wristband into the mosh pit area; an odd system of first X amount in get a wristband, you can then leave and return to the pit at any time. Nice if you wanna be in the pit, but it doesn't necessarily mean the people there were the best crowd to be at the front.

A big bottle fight ensued between acts with two groups in the pit area, and everyone else outside the pit attacking everyone in the pit area. The attitude was actually quite fun and nothing hurtful was thrown, just empty bottles. Generally the weather was pretty good, apart from a storm appearing only for Cradle Of Filth's set - to which Danni admitted he had requested it from God.

Millencolin had lost all their instruments in flight so had to borrow others and Slayer, although they killed it, were just a wall of noise. SOAD abruptly ended their set without reason. We later found out this was apparently due to some scaffolding collapsing.

Tool, whilst technically brilliant, gave an odd stationary performance on individual podiums then Zack Wydle and Robert Trujillo returned for a second performance to close with Ozzy, finalised with a massive fireworks display.

1 Day Ticket: £37.50 | Bands Seen: 12/26

download festival
My geeky collection of tickets from the previous years.

2003 - enter Download Festival, two days and two stages! I actually went to the festival on my own as no friends were going. I only had an arena pass and planned to just crash somewhere overnight. This proved to be very cold with no sleeping bag!

Because of this and having a good spot on the front row at the main stage I ended up only staying at this stage the entire weekend, missing Metallica's infamous secret set but getting my mug on the back cover of The Darkness' 'Permission To Land' (not that you can see my face properly though).

Marilyn Manson had an OK gig and Iron Maiden headlined the Saturday which I watched up the hill with a cup of tea.

Sunday, Less Than Jake, infamous for their crowd pitting antics, created the first horse shoe pit around the sound stage, due to the central crowd barrier preventing a full doughnut pit and as fun as it sounds, it proved quite messy when the crowds from each side met in the middle at full speed!

Evanescence performed their first UK gig whilst Disturbed kicked off playing an entire song with no vocals being projected. Whilst Slipknot themselves did not play, both Joey and Corey performed with Murderdolls and Stone Sour respectively.

The weather was great all weekend until Zwan came and brought the rain with them. I managed to tuck under the tarp walkway which had been ripped up, almost like a field long snake in the middle of the crowd, but that didnt really help. I dried off to Audioslave, who moved up to headline on the Sunday after Limp Bizkit pulled out, but unfortunately surfed as the tide went out and fell in a puddle of mud!

Tickets: £87.50 (2 Day Arena: £70, Camping £12.50, Parking £5) | Bands Seen: 25/57

download festival
Back page of The Darkness 'Permission To Land'. I'm there to the left of the cameraman on the front row - honest! 2003.

In 2004 Download festival brought us a third stage and I brought my flag! looking back at footage of Maiden and GnR you see loads of flags and it looked cool, but there were NONE last year, so I though OK, I'll take one! This proved to be a good umbrella, or target - depending on how I felt about the people around me, as the bottle fights returned!

If you were camping you wouldn't have been allowed into the arena until after The Dillinger Escape Plan had finished playing. Iggy invited the crowd onstage, Arch Enemy thundered the tent before Steve-O did what Steve-O does and also gave eggs to the crowd to throw at Electric Six, who took it very well, and this year's secret set came courtesy of FFAF.

On the Sunday Slayer swapped with Damageplan, due to airport problems, over filling the second stage tent which was a very enjoyable set enhanced by the fact I watched from the side with Nikki Sixx. He even poked a girl up the ass for blocking our view with my flag pole!

Slipknot performed for the first time and Metallica stole the headlines again keeping the crowd waiting over an hour until they finally announced they had no drummer. I'd already fucked off to see some music and caught a great set of HIM, in typical drunken lyric forgetting form. After which catching Metallica and wondering why the fuck drummers are changing. Maybe the big wait was worth it for not having to hear any 'St Anger' material!

Slipknot played for the first time. It's worth noting that Download held a second festival the same week in Scotland and if you watch any coverage from this year and you see a flag in the crowd, it's me!

Tickets: £100 (2 Day Arena: £80, Camping £15, Parking £5) | Bands Seen: 22/74

download festival
My flag captured in 2004.

In 2005 Download brought us three days. That's right, Live Nation teamed up with Ozzfest to give us an extra day, totally THREE FUCKING DAYS! I think this was the first sell out year too, if not it was the next year with about 90,000 in attendance and was fucking full!

It sure helped I was young at this point but man I was knackered after it but this year still remains my favourite year. In all I saw 39 bands, which I think worked out at just £2.40 per band. It really is worth just walking around and seeing someone else, or in my case - running!

The bottle fights got pretty aggressive this year with full bottles with lids on being thrown down the hill into the crowd. In fact I got a black eye from some twat throwing a full sealed bottle at head hight from about five metres away. It actually almost knocked me out.

Quite a few idiots also climbed the rigging of the second stage. One jumped and landed foot first into my other eye, another broke his leg. I ran around in a red kilt this year but due to the amount of dust it went home grey!

Friday was billed as an indie and alternative day which to be fair only Garbage and the headliners, Feeder, stood out as non-heavy. But credit due, they did a great job.

Trivium opened the main stage on Saturday morning and the second stage hosted a proper Metal bill that to this day is hard to top with American Head Charge, Every Time I Die, Uenearth, Meshuggah, BFMV, Lamb Of God, Chimaria and In Flames headlining.

Whilst In Flames were awesome in their two hour slot it was also quite fun playing football outside the tent with a giant ball about ten feet high brought over from Black Sabbath.

On Sunday Henry Rollins gave the morning's sermon, Society 1 swung their singer for the entire set suspended from hooks in his back, yuk! The rest of the Roadrage Tour performed, and more great acts such as Mudvayne, Caliban with a tent wide wall of death, Shadows Fall, Mastodon, Killswitch Engage, Slayer back on the main stage with a circle pit before they even strike a note: yes, that is me and my flag running in the circle pit.

Slipknot get the crowd to sit the fuck down again and although weather had been great all weekend, SOAD play a cold night! A lot of flags this year but all bought on site due to Leicester's street market flag man being at all the festivals in the UK that year, but you can still tell mine apart due to my customisation, awesomely exploited by Trivium on their third UK tour poster and by Roadrunner UK online. I also bumped into Pritchard and Dainton who told me to burn the flag!

Tickets: £132.50 (3 Day Arena £105, Camping £22.50, Parking £5) | Bands Seen: 39/68

download festival
My flag captured in 2005 and used on Trivium's tour poster.

In 2006 Download gave us an extra early day camping and two new venues; the Snickers Bowl and the Aftershock Tent. The former being an extreme sports arena and showcasing smaller bands, whilst the latter - well I have a rule; what happens in the Aftershock tent stays in the Aftershock tent.

All I will say is there was lots of Aftershock in my eyes, plenty of gore from the Circus of Horrors and from some Suicide Girls (please refer to rule no.1 on the SS's!).

This was also the year of the riots. I can't really tell you what happened as I missed it all, only emerging from the Aftershock tent at 4.00am to a very odd atmosphere; no security, no one walking about and a huge fuck off bonfire in the middle of the campsite with which anything near by was being thrown into - including some people's tents and possessions, very uncool.

But also a massive kind of tribal experience was happening with trash bins and tubs being used as drums and people dancing naked around the fire - I even saw Jesus! I left at 6.00am but it continued for a few more hours.

Band wise, I always remember this as the year of the S's; Strapping Young Lad, Soulfly, SikTh and Skindred. Corey returned with Stone Sour and guested a great skat with Korn who were a singer down and had last minute step ins, most needing an auto cue with the exception of Skindred's Benji, who without a doubt stole the set.

Avenged Sevenfold kicked ass much better than their tour earlier on in the year and Metallica had a playback of 'Master Of Puppets' for its 20th anniversary. That's playback - not performance!

In Flames returned with a midday slot on the main stage which meant they had to play a small slot of just twenty minutes whilst Guns N' Roses closed the festival with complaints to bottle throwers. Whilst The Prodigy went down really well and packed out the second stage tent, it also brought a lot of undesirables to the festival, specifically dodgy characters selling drugs and stealing. Our group got robbed twice but we actually managed to capture one of them and send him off in a van!

Tickets: £140 (3 Day Arena £115, Camping £20, Parking £5) | Bands Seen: 31/76

download festival
Previous year's posters.

2007 didn't have anything special to stand out though Lamb Of God's performance was put onto DVD and the controversial positioning of MCR closing the main stage and KoRn closing the second stage. Some knobends were planning riots in response to this but thankfully the Metal world condemned them and nothing came of it. This year the t-shirt printers I was working at happened to be commissioned to do the official merch, so I managed to get a top and laminate before the fest.

So Friday night, MCR did, however, finish and the arena emptied before KoRn even finished their set, which featured Joey Jordison on drums. Machine Head and Slayer ripped up the main stage on Saturday whilst Motley Crue gave a fantastic closing to the second stage with extended thank you's and dishing out of Jager.

Sunday was my big day but during a circle pit I started during Chimaira, my knee got dislocated and I was out for the day which I was gutted about, but thankfully no matter what I can still enjoy DevilDriver's massive football pitch sized circle pit, Mastodon and Lamb Of God whether I'm stood still or in the pit.

In a bizarre twist Reel Big Fish closing the third stage actually stole the festival for me - especially when some kid trying to see into the tent fell inside the biffa bin he was stood on (though I hope he recovered as he got stretchered away!).

Unfortunately the Aftershock tent didn't return but due to the success of an after hours site providing music the Duracell tent was introduced. Also the stalls were oddly positioned on the track outside of the main arena this year, probably in an effort to stop all those flags!

This was the last year I took mine into the arena - I do agree that they get in the way and I would only wave mine about in-between bands/songs or in circle pits. I actually got a good shot of me in the official coverage stood on the hill holding my flag up.

Tickets: £151 (3 Day Arena £125, Camping £20, Parking £6) | Bands Seen: 18/100

download festival
In the Duracell Tent, 2006.

2008 saw Download festival evicted from the track! Yes that's right, and apparently Live Nation also had little warning of this. GP bikers complained of grease on the track, which was also being upgraded to accommodate the F1, which in the end bankrupted the holding company and the Grand Prix stayed at Silverstone and also lost the GP to Silverstone too.

So the solution was locate the festival on the park's market site with the main stage being situated at the bottom of a hill creating a kind of amphitheatre and the second stage being upgraded to a full size outdoor stage on the tarmac. This was the first year that the LONG walk from campsite to arena came about.

Download Radio took a turn for the better. Where previously K! or the Beeb had been broadcasting, TotalRock took the reigns and DL radio to a new level with the 'tin can' studios located in the arena. Due to the long distance between sites the market area was duplicated at both the camping area and the arena.

The Duracell tent returned but due to some prat climbing the rigging, falling, and breaking his leg during a live DJ set on DL and TotalRock radios, the Thursday night was cut short. For some reason I decided to wear a pink leopard print dress and bunny rabbit ears. I went a bit mad on Jaeger and thus was dubbed Jaeger Bunny. I also got severely burnt before I'd even set up the tent on Wednesday.

Corey Taylor was due to guest with Apocalyptica but this turned out to be unrealistic due to his touring schedule and this became the first year he has not performed at the festival. Kid Rocks pulls out last minute due to his dislike of the festival giving Disturbed and Judas Priest longer sets - every one cheers.

The Dillinger Escpae Plan tear up the third stage whilst KISS headline the main stage and attempt to break the world record of largest crowd of KISS face painted fans whilst Ace Frehley plays the next day on the second stage.

Saturday, Throwdown create the biggest ever wall of death and Bleeding Through create the biggest ever doughnut pit whilst Airbourne Singer, Joel O'Keefe climbs the stage and HIM headline the second stage again, playing for the fourth time.

A pretty laid back Sunday with a classic set from The Wildhearts and Max Cavalera playing Donington in another band; Cavalera Conspiracy, for the first time reunited with his brother Igor, 15 years since they last both played together in Donington. The CC pitts killed the Jaeger Bunny and Jonothan Davies goes solo performing on a throne due to a bad back.

Tickets: £160 (3 Day Arena £130, Camping £20, Parking £10) | Bands Seen: 31/100

download festival
Bunnied up in 2008.

2009 saw Download festival relocated once again, this time to the car park! Another sell out with around 100,000 in attendance and the successful classic rock theme for the Sunday. A forth stage was introduced as the Red Bull Bedroom Jam stage for unsigned bands, although horribly located up the hill on the boundary of the arena. Support for the unknown bands was really strong. DL radio is hosted by Hard Rock Radio.

Due to last year's antics the Duracell tent is replaced by the Monster Arena, featuring God awful DJs from K! playing the same 15 songs on a scratched CD, constantly shouting down a distorted microphone thinking they're Fred Durst and telling people what to do; jump, scream, jump, lemme hear you, hands in the air SHUT THE FUCK UP!!! Twats.

Somehow we were actually camped in the same enclosure as the market so that was pretty convenient but annoying from those DJ tards. This year I ran around in a wolf hood and soon took on the name of Jaeger Wolf and bagged a photo in a festival guide on the Download page and a massive campaign on Myspace.

Limp Bizkit finally made an appearance with an odd persona from Durst but impeccable performance from the band. Another line-up change for KoRn but an amazing set followed by the newly reunited Faith No More.

A stella start to Saturday with FFDP, DevilDriver, Hatebreed and Down and some more dance-esque bands with Static-X who were invaded by bee's - apparently attracted to the bass (I think it was my ice cream), Pendulum and The Prodigy. Would have made sense to have them all on the same stage!

Marilyn Manson gave a truly shit performance, even spitting on newly returned bassist Twiggy Ramirez, and not realising his set was over and trying to do an encore. But without a doubt Slipknot highlighted the weekend. Although nothing new, getting the entire arena of probably 80,000 to sit down and jump up at the same time is an amazing site to be seen, which you can on their '(sic)nesses' DVD.

Today's rock really stood strong with the likes of Black Stone Cherry, Karma To Burn, Volbeat, Shinedown, Clutch and Steel Panther overfilling the third stage. Another stage mess up - they should have been on the second stage before Buckcherry instead of clashing.

ZZ Top, Papa Roach, Whitesnake and Def Leppard - what a night!

Tickets: £170 (3 Day Arena £135, Camping £25, Parking £10) | Bands Seen: 30/88

download festival
Wolfed up in 2009 on MySpace.

2010 and my tenth year at Donington. Download finally bagged AC/DC, a reunited Rage Against The Machine and for the first time in the UK in twelve years, Aerosmith!

For most, AC/DC stole the show with their own private stage, but for me it was seeing my idols Aerosmith for the first time. This was the 30th year of festivals (though not continually) at Donington and also the 30th anniversary of Saxon's 'Wheels Of Steel' album which they performed on the Sunday. They also performed at the first Monsters Of Rock.

The Jaegermeister Acoustic Truck is introduced as the fifth stage and I could potentially have played the fourth stage if I hadn't temporary turned down an audition with Imcus due to other commitments. This year, to help cover the cost of AC/DC, DL had introduced an extra charge if you want to camp before Friday and this system has remained.

Godsized filled the third stage tent and another first for me, seeing Dave Grohl drum with Them Crooked Vultures whilst his Foo Fighter buddy Taylor Hawkins plays the fourth stage. BFMV play for a fifth time.

Killswitch thought it unique to be invited a second year running but did appear last minute and performed well with, of course, their Dio cover in honour of the late legend. HIM play for a fifth time on the second stage on Saturday and another great set from Volbeat.

Reckless Love fill the third stage tent and RATM was just a dream come true. Saxon and Slash play brilliant sets on the Sunday Sun whilst Steel Panther and Stone Temple Pilots get given a rain along with Airbourne, whose front man Joel O'Keefe scaled the stage rigging regardless and solo's up high.

The sky clears for Corey Taylor with Stone Sour but for Aerosmith half the crowd had left to drive home. Very disheartening for the band but I loved every minute of their blinding set which spanned their entire history. Couldn't have asked for anything more but to have been on the front row, as the people there hardly looked like they were moving!

The night's entertainment in the village dwindled to a little van in a corner - gone were the fun days of the after hours disco.

Tickets: £190 (3 Day Arena £140, 3 Day Camping £40, Parking £10) | Bands Seen: 27/135

download festival
Suffering again from a bad case of heyfever, 2010.

2011 I went to Download working for my good friend's Starseed, so I got to see the other side of the festival - behind the scenes! As I had a pass I also bagged some interviews with friends playing this weekend.

There are many people who just like to hang out in VIP so they can look cool, and it goes on at every festival, but it pisses me off as there are many people who would love the chance to get a pass and actually watch the bands, such as myself. Gutted to miss cKy and a pretty chilled day for me. But good enjoyment with OAF, The Darkness rocked and KoRn got an odd second stage penultimate closer slot.

Saturday saw Skindred perform Donington for the fifth time with the main arena giving the Newport helicopter a go. Skunk Anansie and Avenged Sevenfold played awesome sets and SOAD finally give the UK a quality performance on par with their music.

Sunday sees the return of the rain, BFMV play for sixth time, Starseed play a full tent followed by Pub Landlord Al Murray's T-34. Gwar gore out with the Queen and Rob Zombie fills the second stage to a clear sky to close the festival. Corey misses the festival for a second time.

Tickets: £190 (3 Day Arena £145, Camping £35, Parking £10) | Bands Seen: 21/143

download festival
Getting long in 2010.

2012 Top Tips! Friday: Cancer Bats really rock and Fear Factory finally come to Download, Terrorvision should be wicked and if you like something a bit technical then check out The Safety Fire and get a good rockin' acoustic set with Million Dollar Reload.

But act of the day goes to the awesomely mighty legend Devin Townsend. The songs mix between loud, ambient, symphonic and bubblegum Metal filled with a geniously genuinely nice funny guy.

Saturday: Corey plays solo, Turbonegro, Ginger and Skindred are gonna have a good time on the second stage and yeah, Metallica are back playing 'The Black Album' (actually it's a self titled album but everyone just calls it black). Saxon and Steel Panther will be great but the legends are finally here, Tenacious fucking D!!!

Sunday: Some good female rocking at the Jaeger stage with Sanguine and Saint Jude, whilst Metal Hammer pinup Brittany Paige opens the second stage with Kobra And The Lotus. Later on reunited Refused and Irish jiggy Drop Kick Murphys are gonna really get things going, with more tech headlining the third stage with Periphery - love that shit.

Main stage sees DevilDriver and Kyuss Lives! (now down to two original members), Black Label Society and Soundgarden should hopefully be good as should Sabbath but Lamb Of God will steal the day for me!

Tickets: £205 (3 Day Arena £155, Camping £35, Parking £15) | Bands Announced: 149

2013? Well Download festival always strives to get the biggest bands that haven't played and reform others... and the list is shortening!

Punk is probably due to come back in soon so perhaps Green Day or Blink 182, DL is slowly catching on with progressive and tech so perhaps dutch legends Textures, newly reunited SikTh or UK rising stars TesseracT and Chimp Spanner? I'd love to see Dweezil Zappa, The Agonist, Protest The Hero and Queens Of The Stone Age at Donington and how about Rolling Stones - now that's something legendary!

Rammstein still haven't played DL and Queen have never been to Donington! Time will tell, until then have a good tenth birthday and remember the sun screen!

30.5.12








 

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"I need some closure, Phil needs some closure, you need some closure... so let's do this!"...

motorhead EXCLUSIVE: PHIL CAMPBELL FORMALLY OPENS LEMMY'S BAR AT BLOODSTOCK 2016
"He would be very proud right now and he would want you all to get your rocks off. This place is amazing..."

tony iommi GREAT NEWS FROM TONY IOMMI: CANCER IS IN REMISSION
"The chemotherapy and the follow-up treatment appear to have done the trick — but I'm aware that it could come back one day."

suicide silence SUICIDE SILENCE ANNOUNCE NOVEMBER 2016 UK TOUR
"Hold on to your butts cause we will be headbanging our way through your town! Bring your A game cause we will be bringing ours..."

ac dc AC/DC IN FULL FLIGHT: QUALITY LIMITED EDITION BOOK IS A MUST FOR COLLECTORS
All of the photographs have been carefully processed and digitally restored to optimise reproduction quality.

ozzy osbourne BOB DAISLEY FILES LAWSUIT AGAINST OZZY OSBOURNE, WHO RESPONDS
"We would have hoped that after 36 years that Mr Daisley would have lost his unhealthy personal obsession and resentment towards Mr Osbourne's success."

70 tons of metal 70000 TONS OF METAL: SIXTY BANDS, BARS THAT NEVER CLOSE AND MUCH MORE
Heavy Metal bands from around the globe playing concerts on four different stages...

lamb of god WAS BREAKING NEWS: LAMB OF GOD REVEAL NEW MUSIC VIDEO FOR 'EMBERS': MARK MORTON HAS SOME DEEPLY PERSONAL WORDS
"Nearly a decade after 'Walk With Me In Hell' it was happening yet again. Art was imitating life..."

iron maiden WAS BREAKING NEWS: IRON MAIDEN RELEASE "THANK YOU" VIDEO - WATCH IT HERE
Now it's break time for Iron Maiden but they will be back for a full scale UK Tour in 2017...

meat loaf WAS BREAKING NEWS: MEAT LOAF RELEASES SECOND TRACK FROM FORTHCOMING NEW ALBUM WITH JIM STEINMAN - LISTEN HERE
"Now psychologist and psychiatrists all over America are giving it to their patients..."

devin townsend DEVIN TOWNSEND PROJECT LAUNCH FIRST TRACK FROM 'TRANSCENDENCE' - LISTEN HERE
Devin has also announced that he will take part in a live Q&A tomorrow, 10th August, via Facebook...

anathema ANATHEMA LINE UP AUTUMN UK TOUR TO ROAD TEST NEW MUSIC
"There's something about the immediacy of playing something new before an audience who are hearing it for the first time..."

meshuggah MESHUGGAH TO RELEASE THEIR EIGHTH STUDIO ALBUM, 'THE VIOLENT SLEEP OF REASON'
Inspired by a Goya painting called The Sleep Of Reason Produces Monsters...

kansas KANSAS RELEASE FIRST SINGLE FROM 'THE PRELUDE IMPLICIT' - LISTEN HERE
"Recording 'The Prelude Implicit' was an incredible experience and I couldn't be happier with the results..."

todd rundgren TODD RUNDGREN LIVE ALBUM OUT AUGUST 26th IN MULTIPLE FORMATS
Watch the video clip of Todd's electrifying performance of 'Black Maria' here...

saxon EXCLUSIVE: SAXON AND GIRLSCHOOL TOO HOT TO HANDLE AT WACKEN: DIO MAKES GUEST APPEARANCE AND TWISTED SISTER'S FIRE BURNS ONE LAST TIME
Heavy Metal thunder struck Wacken's Main Stage...

wacken EXCLUSIVE: ARCH ENEMY CLOSE WACKEN IN STYLE AS TRIPTYKON AND CLUTCH IMPRESS: FIRST 2017 BANDS ANNOUNCED
German Metal festivals are still in full swing at 3.00am...

therion EXCLUSIVE: THERION STEAL THE SHOW AT WACKEN: CONTAINS NSFW STEEL PANTHER PHOTOS
Catch this incarnation of Therion when you can because today they were superb...

bruce dickinson IRON MAIDEN FRONTMAN TAKES ON THE GOVERNMENT: BRUCE SHOOTING CLOWNS JUST HOURS AFTER WORLD TOUR ENDS
"Byzantine - people in The Awkward Squad - reasons that I frankly don't want to understand - just get it fixed!"

pete way PETE WAY TAKING A FAST RIDE OUT OF HERE WITH SHOCKING AUTOBIOGRAPHY
"He blew millions on drugs and booze and left behind him a trail of chaos and carnage..."

eluveitie EXCLUSIVE: ELUVEITIE RETURN FROM THE DEAD TO DESTROY WACKEN
Somehow Chrigel has managed to create another incarnation of Eluveitie whilst the band were embroiled in a heavy touring schedule.

iron maiden EXCLUSIVE: IRON MAIDEN CLOSE THE BOOK WITH SPECTACULAR WACKEN PERFORMANCE
"After the show I was so relieved everything went well that I had a glass of wine while I said my farewells to my friends in the crew."

motorheaed EXCLUSIVE: NO SLEEP 'TIL HAMBURG: MOTÖRHEAD'S BOMBER MAKES ITS FINAL FLIGHT AT WACKEN
And he spoke, with his voice: "Don't forget us. We are Motörhead. And we play rock n' fucking roll."

magnum WAS BREAKING NEWS: MAGNUM ANNOUNCE DECEMBER UK TOUR DATES
The latest album crashed into teh UK charts at number 31, their best position since the 80s...

don airey EXCLUSIVE: DON AIREY ROCKS CAMBRIDGE FIRST DAY ALL NIGHT LONG
Cambridge Rock 2016 kicked off in style last night as a packed out Main Stage area ensured that Don Airey took to the stage to rapturous applause.

status quo STATUS QUO'S RICK PARFITT HAS ALL THE REASONS TO BE HAPPY IN HIS CONVALESCENCE
"Had a lovely morning walk with Pappa Parf. He's really on the mend."

delain DELAIN UNVEIL FIRST ALBUM DETAILS: EUROPEAN TOUR WITH EVERGREY AND KOBRA AND THE LOTUS ANNOUNCED
"We have never had so many milestone events in one year and there is still more to come.

buckcherry BUCKCHERRY ANNOUNCE NEW RELEASE AND UK TOUR DATES
2016 is the 10th anniversary of their acclaimed '15' album and the huge rock hit that was 'Crazy Bitch'

dokken DOKKEN CLASSIC LINE-UP ANNOUNCE TOUR DATES
"Being that it is only six shows, we are going to make it as spectacular as possible."

weapon uk WEAPON (UK)'S 'SET THE STAGE ALIGHT' 35th ANNIVERSARY EDITION SET FOR RELEASE
The anniversary edition contains all Weapon UK's 1980/81 recordings and two live bonus tracks.

slayer WAS BREAKING NEWS: SLAYER FUTURE "VERY UNCLEAR" SAYS KERRY KING
"I'm holding off a lot of things I wanna do at home, just 'cause I don't know if I'm gonna be working in two years..."

black sabbath WAS BREAKING NEWS: OZZY OSBOURNE REVEALS SEX ADDICTION
"I am mortified at what my behavior has done to my family..."

black sabbath WAS BREAKING NEWS: BLACK SABBATH DENIAL ISSUED BY BILL WARD
"We have seen it reported in the news that Bill will be playing with Black Sabbath on The End tour..."

scorpion chld WAS BREAKING NEWS: SCORPION CHILD AND JARED JAMES NICHOLS ANNOUNCE UK TOUR
"It is our pleasure to announce a return to the United Kingdom. Now that 'Acid Roulette' is in play, we will have some real fun...."

clutch CLUTCH RELEASE OFFICIAL VIDEO FOR 'A QUICK DEATH IN TEXAS'
"Originally, I was going to be drawn-and-quartered, but we didn’t have the budget for four horses..."

simon townshend THE WHO TOURING GUITARIST SIMON TOWNSHEND'S RE-MASTERED ALBUMS FEATURING EDDIE VEDDER ON THE WAY
"I would place it amongst his best work. Incredible how he just gets better and better..."

skillet SKILLET EXTEND THE UNLEASHED TOUR: LONDON DATE INCLUDED
The tour is in support of Skillet's new album 'Unleashed', their first in three years, which will be released on August 5t...

evyltyde EVYLTYDE TO HEADLINE LEICESTER'S FIREBUG: VEIL OF DELUSIONS TO MAKE THEIR UK DEBUT
Female fronted Metallers bring their take on traditional classic rock, 21st century style, to Leicester's Firebug venue in September...

ac dc AC/DC FUTURE UNCLEAR BUT ANGUS SAYS HE WANTS TO PLAY WITH KEITH RICHARDS
"At this point, I don't know. We were committed to finishing the tour. Who knows what I'll feel after..."

marilyn manson EXCLUSIVE: CBS ATTEMPT TO DISCREDIT SLIPKNOT AND MARILYN MANSON FANS WITH "VIOLENCE" LIES
If you happen to see any reports about what happened on Saturday night at the First Niagara Pavilion, be very careful what you believe....

sex pistols SEX, DRUGS, ROCK N' ROLL, FASHION, CRIME, POLITICS: UK SCREENINGS OF 'ANARCHY! THE McLAREN WESTWOOD GANG' HERE
Much more than the short lived punk phenomenon however and explores the notion of Malcolm McLaren as the great architect of British Punk...

pink floyd PINK FLOYD TO RELEASE MAMMOTH 27-DISC BOX-SET IN NOVEMBER
Pink Floyd delve into their vast music archive to produce a deluxe package that includes seven individual book-style volumes...

devilment DEVILMENT, FEATURING DANI FILTH, TO TOUR THE UK IN DECEMBER
"It's going to be awesome touring this in our home nation just before Xmas. We literally can't wait; the shows are going to be insane!"

a7x AVENGED SEVENFOLD, DISTURBED AND IN FLAMES TO TOUR UK IN JANUARY
The tour hits eight UK cities between 10th and 21st January and tickets are on sale right now...

hellyeah HELLYEAH HONOUR DIMEBAG IN NEW "MUST SEE" VIDEO OF PHIL COLLINS SONG
"...and he's, like, 'Dude, you're gonna be singing this song for the rest of your life."

opeth OPETH UNVEIL FIRST TRACK FROM FORTHCOMING NEW ALBUM: LISTEN HERE
"We're happy with the tune. It's heavy, a bit 'meat and potato' but what the hell... we love it! Hope you do too!"

led zeppelin RANDY CALIFORNIA'S ESTATE APPEAL LED ZEPPELIN 'STAIRWAY TO HEAVEN' VERDICT
The jury agreed with the defence's argument that the chord progression was "commonplace” and dated back centuries

iron maiden WATCH IRON MAIDEN'S NEW ED FORCE ONE SPECIAL VIDEO RIGHT HERE
"In this guise, with Iron Maiden down the side of it, it just blows the doors off ever other plane on the planet..."

joe bonamassa JOE BONAMASSA TO PLAY TWO SHOWS AT THE ROYAL ALBERT HALL
The Royal Albert Hall concerts will feature a hand-picked group of world-class musicians playing material from his latest album plus classic Bonamassa fan favourites...

winterstorm festival TROON - ARE YOU READY TO ROCK? WINTER STORM FESTIVAL IS ANNOUNCED
A new rock festival is heading to the Scottish seaside town of Troon in South Ayrshire this November...

blues festival FORMER WHITESNAKE MAN ANNOUNCED FOR THE GREAT BRITISH RHYTHM AND BLUES FESTIVAL
"We are really excited about the changes we are making and hope they will attract a wider audience..."

armored saint ARMORED SAINT TO HEADLINE OZZFEST MEETS KNOTFEST KICK-OFF PARTY
The September 23rd pre-festival concert includes a night of performances from Armored Saint, Havok, Exmortus and Thrown Into Exile...

new england EXCLUSIVE: NEW ENGLAND ANNOUNCE NOVEMBER TOUR DATES INCLUDING JAPAN
New England have announced tour dates in support of last year's vinyl release 'I Know There`s Something Here' and upcoming album 'Live At The Regent Theater...

british lion STEVE HARRIS' BRITISH LION TO HEADLINE PLANET ROCKSTOCK
"Fundamentally, it's still rock, and if you see it live, it's really powerful live..."

second relation SECOND RELATION PREMIERE TITLE TRACK OF FORTHCOMING THIRD ALBUM 'ENO'
Austrian prog rockers Second Relation's new single and video is premiering today and it's got Europe in a buzz...

amorettes THE AMORETTES ANNOUNCE SECOND LONDON SHOW ON CO-HEADLINE TOUR
"Our show at Our Black Heart in London has sold out in ten days, which is fantastic! How quickly could this one sell out?"

thunder THUNDER PLAN TO GIVE THE GAME AWAY WITH A NEW BOOK
The band plan to launch the book at an event being held as part of the 'Louder Than Words' literary festival in Manchester on Saturday 12th November.

rudolf schenker SCHENKERS AT WAR: RUDOLF BREAKS HIS SILENCE ON MICHAEL'S ACCUSATIONS
"He's a trick master, and he's a wannabe. And that's it. He can do whatever he wants..."

jon oliva SAVATAGE MAINMAN JON OLIVA RECOVERING FROM STROKE
"I lived the rock n' roll lifestyle since I was 18. It's all I knew and I enjoyed the ride very much..."

ramblin man RAMBLIN' MAN FAIR 2017 DATES ANNOUNCED PLUS WHO WE THINK COULD HEADLINE NEXT YEAR
After what was probably the best rockin' weekend of the year so far, we didn't have to wait long before we could start planning for the 2017 rematch...

airbourne AIRBOURNE ANNOUNCE NOVEMBER HEADLINE UK TOUR
The band will play ten UK date beginning in Portsmouth and Norwich on November 17th and finish off with two nights at The Electric Ballroom in Camden, London...

black stone cherry BLACK STONE CHERRY ANNOUNCE UK TOUR
"We have never done anything like this before and we knew the UK was the only place to do it. That's all we're gonna say about it!"

gary rossington LYNYRD SKYNYRD UPDATE WITH MORE CANCELLATIONS DUE TO GARY ROSSINGTON ILLNESS
"Currently the band hopes to resume touring on Thursday 4th August at The Cynthia Woods Mitchell Pavilion, The Woodlands..."

extreme EXTREME CELEBRATE 25TH ANNIVERSARY OF 'PORNOGRAFFITI' ALBUM WITH 'PORNOGRAFFITI LIVE 25/METAL MELTDOWN'
"Some of these songs were never played live before so we had to go back and relearn them for the tour."

ozzy osbourne OZZY OSBOURNE: "I'M NOT HAPPY BEING SOBER"
"It scares me. I hear all the time people say that they have another drink in them but they may not have another sobriety in them..."

paul rodgers IT'S NOT ALL RIGHT NOW! PAUL RODGERS SUES DONALD TRUMP
"We will make America great again. God bless you and good night, I love you."

heavy metal HEAVY METAL HELPS PEOPLE DEAL WITH MORTALITY ACCORDING TO OFFICIAL STUDY
"Metal music can be seen as cultural good for fans and thereby can form part of their social identity."

motorhead MOTÖRHEAD STILL RUNNING DOWN THE HIGHWAY: PHIL, MIKKEY AND EDDIE ALL GEARED UP FOR FORTHCOMING DATES
"Every snare hit I do from now on until the end of my career will be a small tribute to Lemmy..."

iron maiden IRON MAIDEN'S STEVE HARRIS DROPS THE PRICE OF HIS ESSEX MANSION BY £1MILLION
The eight-bedroom mansion was on the market for £6.75million in 2012 but it's "guide price" is now a mere £3.95million...

hrh aor ALL GUNS BLAZING FOR NEW HRH AOR 5 ANNOUNCEMENT
Phil Lewis & Tracii Guns unite under the L.A. Guns banner once again for next year's HRH AOR 5 being held next March at Camp HRH in North Wales...

deep purple DEEP PURPLE 'LIVE AT THE NEC' DVD ON THE WAY: FAREWELL JON, WELCOME DON
The two share keyboard duties during the night in a very fitting "passing-of-the-torch" moment...

status quo ROCK 'TIL YOU DROP WITH STATUS QUO 1981-1986 VINYL BOX SET
In addition to the studio albums the box set will include an extra disc of b-sides and extended mixes...

zz top ZZ TOP TO RELEASE THEIR VERY FIRST OFFICIAL LIVE ALBUM IN SEPTEMBER
"In an abstract surrealism style, this collection is a definitive chronicle of the band hangin' together for four plus deluxe decades..."

tygers of pan tang TYGERS OF PAN TANG "SPECIAL TIME" HAS COME WITH NEW RELEASE
"The new Tygers album is finished, done and dusted and ready to unleash on our 'Tygertastic' audience. You're gonna love this one, it's a MONSTER..."

andy fraser ANDY FRASER OF FREE'S LAST RECORDING WITH SAIICHI SUGIYAMA ONLINE HERE
"'Melting Away' became one of Andy's last recordings. He still had so much to offer and I was really looking forward to continuing to work with him."

ritchie blackmore RITCHIE BLACKMORE'S RAINBOW TO PLAY AGAIN BUT WITH LESS DEEP PURPLE SONGS
"I would do probably ninety-five percent Rainbow songs; that's what they seem to want to hear. And it didn't occur to me. I just naturally assumed they wanted to hear everything."

saxon EXCLUSIVE: THIS IS WHAT OUR FAVOURITE ROCKERS THINK OF THE CURRENT POLITICAL CLIMATE
Comment from Saxon, Slash, Thunder, Iron Maiden, Uli Jon Roth, Hawkwind, Cher, Johnny Rotten, Machine Head And More...

beyond the black UK EXCLUSIVE: BEYOND THE BLACK SINGER JENNIFER HABEN IS LOST IN FOREVER AS FIVE MEMBERS DEPART THE BAND
"I have enjoyed the time together with the guys very much and am grateful for everything we have achieved together in Germany. I am currently looking for new colleagues..."

cats in space CATS IN SPACE SET TO RELEASE SLADE CLASSIC WITH DANNY BOWES OF THUNDER ON GUEST VOCALS
"It's is one of my favourite Slade songs, so when they asked me to sing on their version it took me a good second and a half to say yes..."

guns n roses WAS BREAKING NEWS: GUNS N' ROSES ADD MORE TOUR DATES FOR OCTOBER AND NOVEMBER
The Gunners' newly announced dates are for South America with ten dates in Argentina, Brazil, Peru, Chile and Colombia with more to be announced soon...

keith moon YOU WON'T GET FOOLED WITH OFFICIAL KEITH MOON COMMEMORATIVE DRUM HEAD
Manufactured as a special, custom product by Remo, these 14" high-gloss drum heads are a perfect collector's item for true fans of the legendary drummer and The Who...

the answer WAS BREAKING NEWS: THE ANSWER AND THE DEAD DAISIES ANNOUNCE NOVEMBER UK TOUR
"The fact that we get to debut this new material with our mates The Dead Daisies just adds to the rush we're currently experiencing. You really don't want to miss this one!"

ian gillan IAN GILLAN SAYS: "IT'S A WONDERFUL THING, VINYL..." WITH NEW COLLECTION ABOUT TO BE RELEASED
"You just bought something significant, not easily disposable. And look at the sleeves - aren't they cool..."

quireboys THE QUIREBOYS NEW ALBUM ON THE WAY: "THE LYRICS ON THE TITLE TRACK ARE SOME OF SPIKE'S BEST EVER!"
"I approached the songwriting from a different angle and it felt good. There's a lot of passion there."

48 hours 48 HOURS TO ROCK THE UK TO A CITY OF ASHES
"We're hitting the road in September for a co-headline tour with our broseph's City Of Ashes! This will be one of the unsigned tours of the year!"

hammerfall WAS BREAKING NEWS: LIVE LIFE LOUD WITH HAMMERFALL ON 2017 EUROPEAN TOUR: NEW ALBUM ON THE WAY
"We can't wait to get back on stage again to have a gigantic Heavy Metal party every night with all our Templar friends!"

joe perry AEROSMITH GUITARIST JOE PERRY REPORTEDLY SUFFERS HEART ATTACK DURING HOLLYWOOD VAMPIRES GIG
"Thanks to everyone asking about our brother Joe Perry," Alice Cooper wrote. "He is stable right now, with family and is under the best care."

onslaught ONSLAUGHT, BEHOLDER AND ANIHILATED TOUR PROMISES TO BE A TOUR DE FORCE
"By the time we hit the road in November it will be well over two-and-a-half years since we did the last run and we feel the time is now right..."

arw ARW (JON ANDERSON, TREVOR RABIN AND RICK WAKEMAN) ANNOUNCE BAND FOR UPCOMING WORLD TOUR
"I have played with arguably the three greatest bass players ever and I can't wait to play with one of them again!"

marillion MARILLION UNVEIL 'THE NEW KINGS' FROM FORTHCOMING STUDIO ALBUM 'FEAR'
'The New Kings' can also be heard on Marillion's current tour which starts on Monday 11th July in Barcelona...

michael des barres AN AMERICAN WRITER ASKS WHY IT TAKES A BRITISH EX-PAT TO ASK, "WHAT'S GOING ON?" MICHAEL DES BARRES HAS THE ANSWER
This incendiary cover of Marvin Gaye's classic confronts America's issues in an incredibly timely and head-on manner...

freedom call FREEDOM CALL RELEASE A NEW METAL HYMN 'HAMMER OF THE GODS', AVAILABLE FOR DOWNLOAD NOW
The trademark bold vocal harmonies remain. The track is taken from forthcoming opus 'Master Of Light'...

guns n roses STEVEN ADLER JOINS GUNS N' ROSES ON STAGE IN OHIO: FOUR FIFTHS OF 'APPETITE' LINE-UP PLAY TOGETHER FOR FIRST TIME SINCE 1990
"On the drums, you might know this guy. Ladies and gentlemen, Mr Steven Adler..."

ac dc AC/DC BASSIST CLIFF WILLIAMS TO RETIRE AFTER ROCK OR BUST WORLD TOUR: "IT'S BEEN SURREAL"
"AC/DC has been... you know, just... I don't know what else I would wanna do. I love the music and I love playing in the band, and I'm all filled up..."

guns n roses GUNS N' ROSES USE THEIR ILLUSION TO SILENCE THE DOUBTERS WITH US TOUR GOING SO FINE
Axl is clearly in his element on this tour, running across the stage to jump on the monitors mid-song and displaying all the panache of a man completely on top of his game...

stray del bromham STRAY TO ROAM AROUND THE UK ON TOUR INCLUDING A RARE REUNION OF THE ORIGINAL LINE-UP
No need to move a mountain as both Stray and Del Bromham's Blues Devils are on their way to a venue near you...

amorettes THE AMORETTES ANNOY THE NEIGHBOURS WITH RAUCOUS NEW SINGLE
'Let The Neighbours Call The Cops' was co- written by vocalist Gill Montgomery and Black Star Riders front man Ricky Warwick...

eagles of death metal WAS BREAKING NEWS: EAGLES OF DEATH METAL WANT YOU SO BAD ON TWO UK DATES IN AUGUST
This is EODM's first visit to the UK since the band were caught up in the terrible events at The Bataclan Theatre in Paris back in November 2015...

soil SOiL 'SHINE ON' THE UK WITH COMPREHENSIVE TOUR
"We are looking forward to seeing some new places and making some new friends this time around..."

acid reign ACID REIGN GET IN FESTIVE MOOD EARLY WITH SPECIAL GIG ANNOUNCEMENT
'Tis the season to Thrash as Acid Reign team up with Shrapnel with far from obnoxious results...

iron maiden IRON MAIDEN: LEGACY OF THE BEAST MOBILE RPG GAME IS OUT NOW
"We've always wanted to make a quality Maiden mobile game as we think the combination of Eddie and the music is so well suited..."

rick parfitt status quo EXCLUSIVE: STATUS QUO'S RICK PARFITT SEEMS TO BE 'FINE FINE FINE' AS HE IS SPOTTED OUT AND ABOUT
Following the recent health scare a picture has emerged online of him taking a walk in Kingston over the weekend...

bullet for my valentine BULLET FOR MY VALENTINE TO PLAY 'THE POISON' IN FULL FOR THE FIRST EVER TIME
"We promised you something special right? See 'The Poison' played in full for the first time in Manchester! Tickets on sale now here..."

alter bridge WAS BREAKING NEWS: ALTER BRIDGE TO HEADLINE ARENAS ACROSS EUROPE THIS WINTER WITH GOJIRA AND VOLBEAT
This will be their biggest headline tour yet with twenty-four dates across fifteen countries, kicking off on November 4th 2016

the mission WAS BREAKING NEWS: BAUHAUS FRONTMAN PETER MURPHY TO GUEST WITH THE MISSION ON THEIR 30th ANNIVERSARY UK TOUR
"Peter's appearance will help make these shows the special events that we always wanted and hoped they'd be..."

iron maiden IRON MAIDEN ILLUSTRATOR DESIGNS SHIRT FOR ONE DIRECTION'S ZAYN MALIK, MAIDEN LAUNCH THIRD TROOPER BEER AND HI-ON-MAIDEN TO HEADLINE PICCSTOCK
A full-bodied beer using a blend of chocolate and crystal malts to give "a roasted malt and caramel backbone with hints of liquorice and honey"...

bruce dickinson BRUCE DICKINSON TO TAKE PART IN TOP GEAR STYLE CHARITY ROAD TRIP
"The enthusiasm from the group is amazing which will lend itself to making it an unforgettable trip..."

anvil WAS BREAKING NEWS: ANVIL ANNOUNCE UK AND EUROPEAN TOUR FOR OCTOBER/NOVEMBER
Anvil will not only be playing dates in Scotland and Wales but also English towns which rarely see major international artists, such as Huddersfield, Doncaster and Grimsby.

status quo IT'S TIME TO GET 'DOWN DOWN' TO BUTLINS AS SECOND STATUS QUO FAN CLUB CONVENTION IS ANNOUNCED
The weekend will feature live music from ex-Quo drummer John Coghlan and his band with long time friend of the band, Jackie Lynton also scheduled to appear...

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