Real Thing

After much procrastinating on Sunday morning about my participation at this years Download Festival I eventually made it to a patch of grass underneath the flight path to the Nottingham East Midlands airport.

Even though I was there for a mere six hours I saw the bands I wanted to see, just about, and stumbled upon a band I’ve know by name for a long time but have never seen live or paid any attention to.

• Hatebreed are a slickly oiled machine and never disappoint in the live setting.

• Dead Cross were suitably insane in a good way. I actually think it’s the first time I’ve seen Mike Patton live even though I first head Faith No More nearly 28 years ago!

• Kreator were the consummate professionals and even through they were low on the bill and only had a little over 30 minutes they played like headliners.

• Body Count was another first for me and were as good as I expected them to be and got the metal crowd going by opening up with Slayer’s Raining Blood. It’s a shame their London headline show with Crisix is on a Tuesday night.

• Thrice from Irvine, California was what I expected to be a lull in proceedings and opted for food. I was absolutely captivated by them and now need to check out their back catalogue. This is what festivals are for – discovering new acts.

• Meshuggah were brutal and technically heavy as expected. A band I’ve seen a few times in two decades, but very rarely really listen to.

• Shinedown were the entertainers. The frontman loves the sound of his own voice a little bit too much, but he can get a crowd going. I’ve never seen a crowd as big as that bounce in unison. Some great hits too.

I also had the misfortune to be within earshot for In This Moment and Black Veil Brides for a few minutes each. The less said about them the better.

Moving on I’m hoping for another last minute jaunt to Leeds to finally see Turnstile live. I’ve been listening to them since their debut disc Nonstop Feeling dropped three and a half years ago and in that time I’ve missed them on multiple occasions.

I was double booked when they last played close to me in December 2015. They were on stupidly early when I attended Ghostfest earlier in the same year and I was sat in roadworks on the M62. The only other time I got close to seeing them was when they played Hellfest 2016 and rather than roadworks I was stuck in a slow moving queue of people shuffling to get into the festival.

Hopefully it’ll be fourth time lucky and fingers crossed it won’t have sold out before I finally try and snag a ticket. I’ve got a few other shows I want to get tickets for in a short space of time and Outbreak has had to take a back seat for now.

I haven’t listened to their sophomore album Time & Space, releases earlier this year, as much as I’d like to have done, even though it’s only 25 minutes long. It’ll be interesting to see how some of the more experimental stuff goes over live.

Even though I’ve drifted away from the live hardcore arena over the last few years I’m still really looking to seeing quite a few bands on the Saturday. New Jersey’s Floorpunch are another band I’ve been into for a long time now and never seen live.


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