Limp Bizkit bring the hits to Sonisphere with a winning performance

Sonisphere 2009 review

published: Wed 19th Aug 2009

Limp Bizkit

Saturday 1st to Sunday 2nd August 2009
Knebworth House, Hertfordshire, SG1 2AX, England MAP
£132.50 for both days, £157.50 with camping; parking £10, day tix £67.50
daily capacity: 60000
last updated: Thu 30th Jul 2009

It's been 6 years since Limp Bizkit last played the UK, and in music industry terms that amounts to an era. For 20-somethings who's last acquaintance with this band was donning a red baseball cap at 15 and promptly being labelled a 'greebo', there was some real trepidation in the air at the whole rap-metal love-in at Download, the site of Limp Bizkit's initial comeback earlier this summer. A slick, committed set banished such fears, but can the trick be repeated at Sonisphere?

Limp Bizkit
In a nutshell: yes. While today's performance lacks the wave of nervous energy that propelled the band along to win over the crowd at Download, it's still crystal clear that Durst and his gang of merry weirdos are taking no prisoners. Opener 'My Generation' is a clear statement of intent, setting the controls for 'loud, vulgar and proud' in the opening minutes.

As ever, Durst's presence on stage is undeniable, even if his propensity for saying 'fuck' every other word rapidly gets tiresome. It's clear he's also going out of his way to pay his dues this afternoon, paradoxically bigging up Nine Inch Nails before the obscenity filled 'Hot Dog', a song often interpreted as a slur to Trent Reznor. Machine Head also get a look in, with Durst touchingly declaring that "their shit is tight as a motherfucker". Aww, isn't he lovely?

Limp Bizkit
All in all, today's performance is a real crowd pleaser, dispensing with any unnecessary filler to push all the right buttons. Guitarist Wes Borland, sporting a Hitler meets Marilyn Manson look that will no doubt be all the rage by Christmas, is on particularly impressive form, turning out a non-stop barrage of irresistibly chuggy, rhythmic riffage.

When the execrable Rollin' is dropped halfway through, it gets the whole field moving. Whatever your opinion of the song, it has to be recognized as one of the high points of the set, bringing with it the ludicrously entertaining spectacle of a field full of people doing en masse hand movements.

Limp Bizkit
As it turns out, the second half is even stronger. A pummeling 'Break Stuff' leads on to 'Nookie', before a dubious cover of George Michael's 'Faith' that no doubt sparks some horrific 80s flashbacks for the crustier members of the audience. Through to closer 'Take a Look Around', it's a winning selection with the crowd, who know every word, every change, every heavy-as-fuck chorus. "This is a day I will never forget" announces Durst at the end of the set, and it's safe to say most of those present agree with him, at least for the time being. As with Download, the band's performance at Sonisphere today represents an endearing return to form, standing as a reminder of just why we went ballistic for the Bizkit in the first place.
review by: Nick Hagan

photos by: Sarah Collie

Saturday 1st to Sunday 2nd August 2009
Knebworth House, Hertfordshire, SG1 2AX, England MAP
£132.50 for both days, £157.50 with camping; parking £10, day tix £67.50
daily capacity: 60000
last updated: Thu 30th Jul 2009


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