The Über-Rockin’ Guide to Download Festival 2017 – Day Two (Saturday 10 June) Print E-mail
Written by Rich Hobson   
Saturday, 13 May 2017 05:00

While the first day of Download Festival features the return of one of the metal world’s biggest names in System Of A Down, Saturday headliner Biffy Clyro represent the new guard of rock supestardom. With two albums hitting Number One in the UK charts, sold-out arena shows throughout the country and a rabid fanbase of their very own, the argument against Biffy Clyro being considered a “worthy” headliner is redundant.


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Elsewhere, you’ll still find plenty to love across the four stages, with hot up-and-comers mingling with established legends on every stage throughout the day…


Alestorm (Zippo Encore Stage)


The success of similarly folksy metal bands at Download Festival has proven that Donnington has a hearty appetite for theatrical ridiculousness. And who can boast more ridiculousness (and more festival worthy anthems) than Alestorm? With just a fortnight between their set and the release of ‘No Grave But The Sea’, the band’s fifth album, you can bet there’ll still be plenty of surprises in their set even for the most rum-soaked Alestorm fanatic. If Amon Amarth in 2016 is any indication, Alestorm have the makings of a surprise hit for the Saturday morning.



FFO: Turisas, Red Rum, Municipal Waste.


Summary: Surprising as it is, Alestorm’s debut at Download Festival is long overdue and is sure to be absolute ridiculousness.


Biffy Clyro (Main Stage)


A little under a decade ago, Biffy Clyro inhabited an early afternoon spot on the Saturday of Download Festival 2008. Hotly-tipped at the time, Clyro have gone from strength to strength over the past decade, forging a long-term relationship with Donnington in the interim. A worthy investment into the future of British rock music, Biffy Clyro are one of the UK’s most established superstars. Radio-friendly tunes, big sing-alongs and an enduring relationship with a rabid fanbase puts the band at the head of the game, undeniably impressive as they thrive in front of thousands.



FFO: Twin Atlantic, Three Days Grace, Foo Fighters.


Summary: Biffy Clyro headlining download festival feels like the completion of a decade (and then some) long journey for the band.


BlackWaters (Dogtooth Stage)


On paper closer to the kind of band booked at Reading and Leeds (or, at a stretch Glastonbury), BlackWaters nonetheless possess more rock n roll swagger and obnoxious snottiness than any five radio-friendly post-grunge bands you could find. Reviewed here way back in November, BlackWaters are testament to the adage that appearances can be deceptive, as the band roar and howl through an energetic cacophony that is hard to escape. Bouncy and excitable, this is a band that bridges the gap between the indie and rock worlds by being the best of everything.



FFO: The Libertines, The Stooges, Biffy Clyro.


Summary: Rock ‘n’ roll swagger to the nth degree, BlackWaters are a reminder that the line between rock and indie is very thin indeed…


Coheed And Cambria (Zippo Encore Stage)


While they might have dispensed with the sci-fi backing story that has run throughout their music as of late, Coheed and Cambria are still one of the most impressive prog-leaning rock bands on the planet. Combining massive pop choruses and the biggest and most impressive melodies this side of the Smashing Pumpkins, Coheed are the quintessential festival booking, as likely to inspire a mass sing-along as they are to get the masses air guitaring. With hits like ‘Welcome Home’, ‘From Here to Mars’, ‘The Suffering’ and ‘Of Gravemakers and Gunslingers’, who can blame them?



FFO: Thrice, A Perfect Circle, Thr3e.


Summary: Few bands can boast being quite so ambitious as Coheed and Cambria. Massive hits, bigger riffs – this is the quintessential festival band.


Creeper (Main Stage)


Playing almost exactly the same spot as Biffy Clyro did in 2008, Creeper have so much hype behind them right now that they could very well follow suit and headline themselves in time. So far the hugely acclaimed debut album ‘Eternity In Your Arms’ has proven that this is a band with more ambition and drive than many of their peers and a conquering set at Download Festival will surely cement Creeper as one of the UK rock scene’s hottest new bands. It doesn’t hurt that they’ve got some absolute belters, either.



FFO: Alkaline Trio, The Misfits, The Menzingers.


Summary: The hype is very real for Creeper and you can bet their Download Festival set will be regarded as one of the most hotly-tipped sets of the weekend.


IDLES (Dogtooth Stage)


IDLES are great live. And on record. Just in general, actually. Vicious, venomous and dripping in sardonic wit, IDLES are one of the finest punk-inspired bands we have spawned in the past 40 years, electrifying to watch and spring-loaded with roar-along songs that take all the ill-tempered attitude towards our country and (on a greater level) world and turn it into addictive earworm fodder. This band are exactly why the tent stages at Download exist and you can bet will pull no punches in inciting a righteous frenzy of snarled lyrics and riotous intent.



FFO: Sleaford Mods, Descendents, Frank Carter & The Rattlesnakes.


Summary: The spirit of ’77 flung 40 years forward through shit and dirt, IDLES are a punk’s wet dream armed with furious earworms.


Max and Igor Cavalera Return To Roots (Zippo Encore Stage)


‘Roots’ still stands as a landmark release in the metal canon, an album whose heaviness and brutal incorporation of nationalised beats into a thrash metal framework made it entirely unique and inimitable. So it stands to reason that getting two of the key players behind the album (brothers Max and Igor Cavalera) to dedicate a full set to the release is going to be pure gold. Brutal riffs, insane drum-beats and some of the most vicious thrash ever put to record? Our necks hurt already just thinking about it.



FFO: Sepultura, Korn, Slayer.


Summary: A legendary partnership returning to a legendary metal release. What’s not to love?


Rob Zombie (Zippo Encore Stage)


Judged purely on musical merit, Rob Zombie possesses some of the best anthems in the metal world, roaring to life with tracks that are just as good for a dance as they are for a mosh. ‘Dragula’, ‘Feels So Numb’, ‘American Witch’, ‘Everybody’s Fucking In a UFO’ – the setlist almost writes itself with one banger after another. But, that completely overlooks the fact that Zombie also possesses one of the best stage-shows this side of Rammstein, a massive spectacle whose production is being ported over for a very limited run in Europe.



FFO: Rammstein, Ministry, Alice Cooper.


Summary: Allowed his full US production for Download Festival, Rob Zombie is sure to be one of the biggest visible spectacles of this year’s festival.


Suicide Silence (Zippo Encore Stage)


Suicide Silence took one of the biggest gambles of the year with a huge stylistic departure on their new self-titled album. Yet, the band still remain as one of deathcore’s biggest and most recognisable names, utterly indomitable as a brutal, crushing live force. The fact remains that Suicide Silence are undeniably themselves, unafraid to smash down the barriers of their genre and run for the hills in a hugely exciting display of creativity that will doubtless translate fantastically live. Whether you’re a long-time fan or a new recruit, you’ve likely not seen Suicide Silence like this before.



FFO: Bring Me The Horizon, Deftones, While She Sleeps.


Summary: No band has taken a creative leap of faith as big as Suicide Silence this past year. Download Festival is sure to prove that changed or not, they still slay live.


Wednesday 13 (Dogtooth Stage)


King of the modern horrorpunk scene, Wednesday 13 has barely put a foot wrong in the past 13 or so years since going solo from the likes of Murderdolls and Frankenstein Drag Queens. Decidedly darker than he was a decade ago, Wednesday still possesses some of the catchiest horror-inspired anthems on the planet. Headlining the Dogtooth Stage, Wednesday is sure to cement his status as the horror fan’s go-to band, especially if the setlist can dance the line between classic tunes and new material from ‘Condolences’, released on 2 June.



FFO: The Misfits, Doyle, Evil Scarecrow.


Summary: When life (or Download Festival) offers you the opportunity to see Wednesday 13 and Rob Zombie in the same evening, you damn well take it.


Download takes place at Castle Donington from 9 – 11 June. Tickets are available HERE.


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