10 memories of Download 2009

Download 2009 review

published: Wed 17th Jun 2009

Faith No More

Friday 12th to Sunday 14th June 2009
Donington Park, Leics, England MAP
£135 weekend, £65 any day, camping is an extra £25
last updated: Thu 11th Jun 2009

This year's Download was nothing short of spectacular, in previous years Download had gained a reputation for securing maybe two or three really big named bands (Metallica, Kiss, Iron Maiden, Guns N Roses) and then filling the rest of the time with bands that weren't really anything special.

around the festival site (1)
Thankfully this year the organisers of Download seemed to have made the quality consistent throughout all three days, you could argue that the headliners were still big names, but it felt like even without these bands headlining the line up was strong enough to be a complete sell out.

Upon arrival at the festival site, once again the layout had altered creating a little bit of confusion amongst Download regulars. It was hard not to see all of the sunburnt fans walking along the perimeter fence, and this was before the event had even begun.

Once inside the arena, the new layout was fabulous, everything was within reach without having to walk too far. It was easy to get from the main stage to the Tuborg stage and to the second open air stage, without too much fuss. So far, so good, surely there must be a fault with this festival somewhere... and it didn't take long to find a complaint. Lots of people were complaining about the distance from the campsite to the arena. Some punters claimed it was taking them at least 40 minutes to get from the campsite through the crowd and to the main stage, and in blazing sun, this under any circumstances is a bit harsh.

Apart from that one consistent complaint throughout the weekend, this year's Download was as near perfect as could be. It would be nice to see more available free water or a bit more shade especially with the weather being as sweltering as it was.

As I cast my mind back over the weekend, some of the memories that come flooding back to me are:-

Faith No More
1. Faith No More opening their set with a cover version of 'Reunited', it was rather apt, and they even managed to put their unique stamp onto this classic track. Although the younger fans in the audience were probably wondering how did Faith No More get a headlining slot by singing songs like that.

2. The Prodigy having way too much energy for men of their age, however they delivered probably one of the best performances of the weekend (alongside Thunder and Steel Panthers).

Thunder
3. Thunder making an emotional farewell festival appearance, and I genuinely felt like they meant it when they said "this is the last time we will be playing a festival." Judging by the turnout for this performance, they will be sadly missed.

4. Steel Panther were outstanding, with their brand of witty banter and glam rock, extremely talented set of guys, definitely worth checking out.

5. Pendulum were superb, blending rock music with electronic synthesised effects, yes I know on paper it doesn't sound like much, but in a live setting they will blow your socks off.

6. Security staff in the car park at the end of Sunday night not using their common sense, creating a gridlock, that was only rectified after we got out our car and explained to him that we will run him over if he doesn't use his common sense, the traffic soon got moving after that point.

7. Slipknot being absolutely shite. Shiteknot should be their new name. I couldn't make out a single word of what they were singing, and its not that I dislike them as I have been a fan of their music for quite sometime up until this performance, but I have to be honest judging by this performance they don't deserve fans.

8. Being impressed by Journey's newish vocalist (Arnel Pineda) who replaced Steve Perry.

9. Limp Bizkit actually managing to turn up, and demonstrating that they are able to put on an awesome live show.

around the festival site (1)
10. Seeing all of the crazy characters around the site, ranging from Storm Troopers, to Ghostbusters, to topless women, and stark bullock naked men. There seemed to be something for everyone.

Any festival that can leave you walking away liking more bands than when you first arrived surely deserves to be regarded highly, so mission accomplished! Roll on Download 2010, and fingers crossed they might even have more water available for the loyal fans who keep coming back year after year.
review by: Luke Seagrave

photos by: Luke Seagrave

Friday 12th to Sunday 14th June 2009
Donington Park, Leics, England MAP
£135 weekend, £65 any day, camping is an extra £25
last updated: Thu 11th Jun 2009


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