Bloodstock Open Air 2017 – REVIEWED!

FRIDAY

It’s day one of BOA 2017 and we’ve got our obligatory black band tees on, grabbed our wristbands and are headed into the arena for a weekend of pure metal fun.

Friday sees Swedish metallers Soilwork take to the main stage with classics ‘Nerve’ and ‘Stabbing the Drama’ but the sound doesn’t seem quite settled yet and most of what you can hear is distortion and cymbals. Luckily the Kraken tiki bar is on hand with cocktails and you can get your mitts on a Black Kraken ice-cream again, but be warned, it stains your teeth like you have scurvy. Maybe pirate emulation is the point? There’s also a pretty extensive merch stand this year at BOA, taking a leaf out of the Wacken book perhaps, you can now dry your bits with a Bloodstock towel… drink from a Bloodstock flask… don some fabulous branded leggings… the list goes on! This of course is in addition to BOA’s Exploding Ape collab which includes gym wear and an onsite Strongman/Strongwoman competition.

Over at said competition, a whole host of incredibly hench and serious looking women are taking turns lifting incredible amounts of weight to see who can complete the most clockwise rotations on the turnstile. It looks insanely tough and there’s a decent crowd cheering them on. Just to the side we spot The Motley Brew – which is possibly the most British thing ever. A tea tent, serving almost every tea under the sun (and free biscuits, bonus) out of proper mugs, with puns everywhere. We drank ours out of “Sweet Chai of Mine” and “Love in a Percolator” mugs… narf.

Nearby on the Sophie (Lancaster) stage, Denderq are busting out melodic but heavy harmonies and shout out to the BOA crew for “such a well run festival”. Following them, another UK band (and veteran Bloodstockers) Season’s End take the stage after an extremely long hiatus. It doesn’t seem to have done them any harm however, and lead vocalist Becki Clark is absolutely belting it, their symphonic style is fairly rare in UK bands so it’s nice to see them back on the scene.

Over on the main stage a guy dressed as a bloody Patrick Bateman is staring blankly into space and starting to creep the security guards out, but it’s time for Cali thrashers Testament to take control of the arena. Now, I always take it as a good sign if a metal band decides to rep their own tshirts and Testament have no problem doing just that, tick one for Metal-bingo. They’re also playing what can only be described as just good solid chuggy metal, to a pretty huge crowd, who are more than happy to jump around a bit as it is absolutely bloody freezing outside now. Goth girls in jorts are freezing their goosepimpled pale legs right off, and I bet come nighttime they actually have a faint eerie glow being almost translucent. In contrast there seem to be a lot of men rocking a leggings/fur coat combo, looking extremely pleased with their fashion choices this weekend. Bloodstock welcomes all. Testament are a testament (geddit) to old school metal, there’s loads of hair-windmilling and epic guitar solos, and one extremely tiny child with bunches and a mini battle-vest is bopping around to them as if it was tots tv.

On the Sophie stage, Shrapnel are getting all screamy with a crowd ready for some rioting, and the penultimate main stage band Blind Guardian come to the fore with an electric blue-lit entrance. They’ve always been a band with a lot of presence, but I will never not giggle that lead vocalist Hansi Kürsch is so unassuming that he looks like he could be doing your taxes or offering you legal advice. Nevertheless their uniquely symphonic sound is well received here at Bloodstock and the crowd joins in when asked “you will be our backing vocals… we have full trust in your skills… this one’s called Nightfall”. Kürsch is also keen to add “We are going to dedicate this one to Amon Amarth because it’s thanks to them we are here, we lost all our stuff” as the band is playing on entirely borrowed equipment.

Last up, Swedish Viking metal in the form of the mighty Amon Amarth, with an absolutely amazing headline show. They have fire, they have drinking horns, they have ever so much hair… they have a giant headbanging serpent on stage and dance moves (yes, I am claiming the rowing as a dance move) but above all else they are just furiously brilliant at what they do. Click HERE to read our complete headline review.

SATURDAY

Saturday sees the tiny but loud Jager stage fired up with UK scamps Bangover who have gathered a frankly massive crowd then incited them to create a circle-pit around the entire stage, only to then crowd surf (well you know… be ceremoniously carried) from there to the main stage at the end of their set.

Annihilator are rowdy good fun on the main stage, yelling “We are from that racist terrible country called… Canada… I know I’m sorry, I’m sorry eh” and joking “Our money has the Queen on it, so thanks for that guys”. With an album due in November it’s nice to hear some new stuff too “…finally back to early thrash roots… it’s called Twisted Lobotomy” which is absolute shredsville and the crowd is clearly loving it.

A little punky, a little rocky, a little classic metal… Spyder Byte on the Jager stage are just downright decent and judging by the crowd they’ve gathered, they could really play a bigger stage next year with no problems. Municipal Waste are determined to smash shit up with a giant circle-pit from the outset, even before they’d dropped a note, screaming “We’re Municipal Waste and we’re fucking back!”. Calling out “I’m all fucked up on buckfast right now… we play buckfast thrash” and the topical slew of hatred “Fuck Donald Trump! This song’s called ‘I wanna kill the president” only serves to amp up the already rowdy crowd even more, and a record 711 crowd surfers were recorded going over the barrier during this set alone.

Florence Black have pulled a decent crowd over on the Sophie stage, but we’re off in search of sustenance. Yet again Bloodstock have upped the ante when it comes to food, for a small festival there really is a more than decent offering. After looking into stalls selling Paella, Ostrich burgers, Vegan wraps, smoked meats Texas-style and some heart-stoppingly sugary doughnuts, we settle on a gigantic chicken offering from Burrito Boys which was fantastic.

Back at the main stage, Hatebreed enter to the laid back Bad Boys theme to emphasise the juxtaposition of their immediately screamy harsh metalcore flow. Lead vocalist Jamey Jasta stops for a breath and to say “You guys never disappoint man… this is why people come from all over the world to Bloodstock! Thanks for the positivity guys” as a pack of fluffy unicorn people march through the crowd throwing horns.

As the sun goes down you could be forgiven for thinking that the stage was being set for a headliner, but no – the insane amount of props and settings belong to penultimate act – Kreator. Heralded onto the stage by two demonic people brandishing red flares and a giant explosion of red tickertape, it’s clear Kreator mean business. There is a bit of unfortunate-ness with the curtain snagging on the giant devil horns at the back (a man dutifully tramped out with a ladder about halfway through the first song to unhook it… so rock n roll) but the band are absolutely killing it. There’s tonnes of pyro during ‘Satan Is Real’ and the massive church windows are actually screens providing more visuals to light up the stage, it really is a huge undertaking for a non-headline set. ‘Violent Revolution’ and ‘Pleasure to Kill’ go down a storm and it seems like the arena is shoulder-to-shoulder packed, as a huge silver and white streamer explosion rains down over the crowd.

Kids wrapped like tiny Egyptian mummies are streaking around the place as Bloodstock gives their two headline announcements for 2018, Gojira elicits an enormous roar of approval but the reaction to Nightwish is mixed at best.

Onto the actual mainstage headliner for Saturday – Ghost. Despite a technically good set, and a hardcore set of fans down the front they just don’t have the wow-factor we just experienced with Kreator, it’s maybe a shame for them that they followed such a great show. Read our full review of Ghost’s headline show HERE.


SUNDAY

Sunday finally brings the sun and we’re on the hunt for the best tattoos of BOA 2017 – check out our gallery on Facebook to see if we snapped yours! Possessed and Obituary are both shouty good times on the main stage, and Prognosis are absolutely ripping up the New Blood Stage, to a packed tent.

Local Derby lads HELL are predictably mad, with their stained glass window backdrops, crown of thorns and underlings lighting burning sconces. After a little technical difficulty with his headset, vocalist David Bower, armed with a handheld mic is now creeping around the stage amongst the eye-watering amount of pyrotechnics criss-crossing the pit area, calling out “How’s it going bloodstock? It’s been awhile…”. After a brief exit he returns to the stage dressed as a demonic Mr. Tumnus (read: Narnia meets the ninth circle) clicking his hooves as he sermonizes the crowd with a flaming trident. It’s all very surreal, particularly when he makes the ultimate metal Dad-joke “You should have told me bloodstock you were wearing black… we would have changed”. Groan.

Welsh ragga-metal band Skindred are much beloved by the UK metal scene and they absolutely do not disappoint, heaps of banners and backdrops do nothing to distract from the fact that they are completely unique and amazing at what they do. With a tribute photo of Roger Moore on the drumkit, mash-ups of the Imperial March and Benji’s signature spiked sunglasses you could be forgiven for thinking Skindred are all about the gimmick, until you hear them bust out the likes of… er… “If you’re happy and you know it clap your hands”… oh.

No worries though, Benji soon yells “we stand together as people who love fucking rock music right now… this song is about people coming together and living as one… Doom Riff” which is exactly the kind of wild, raucous metal we came here for. With a barrage of strobe lighting for ‘Sound The Siren’ he asks “…you like the new songs? Yes or no don’t fuck about!” before launching into ‘Pressure’ which gets everyone up and bouncing. Benji jokes about “Anyone want a tshirt? On this side? Twenty five fucking quid go and buy one you cunts” before getting serious mentioning the death of a friend, and noting “…none of us are promised tomorrow, just like Sophie (Lancaster)” and urging everyone “if you love someone go and fucking tell them”.

‘Kill The Power’ is huge, but it’s the firm favourite ‘Warning’ featuring a mass twirling of tshirts… bras… one giant inflatable t-rex… for the Newport Helicopter, which is really impressive. Skindred walk that fine line between being cheesy Butlins comedy and just really fucking awesome. Obviously as Brits we love everything about that.

Up next, Arch Enemy destroy the stage with vocalist Alissa White-Gluz, who is a force to be reckoned with. Her Frozen-esque locks, shredded leather and fringed jacket make her look like some kind of ethereal warrior, and that raw bloodcurdling roar earns her a mark of respect amongst the death-metal crowd. As three people on microlights soar above the arena, Alissa addresses the crowd “This is a very special show… about 3 years ago ae released an album called War Eternal… since then we’ve been touring, we’ve done about 300 shows…and this, Bloodstock, is the last one of this War Eternal cycle!”.

Next up on the Jager stage, Voodoo Blood are giving a belting classic metal show to an increasingly large crowd, but as they finish up the arena is filling for finale headliners Megadeth. What a way to close Bloodstock 2017 – Megadeth are true masters of their genre and the crowd is loving them, out with a raft of Marshall amps and some serious shredding they are the perfect sound to end what has been an exceptional weekend. Check out our full Megadeth review HERE. The Bloodstock blues will hit hard next week but for now we are riding out on a serious high, this festival really is family, and it seems pretty strange to be going back to our normal lives for another year. With two announcements already down, we can’t wait to see what else BOA has in store for 2018.

All photographs © A. Hyams – Do not use without permission

BLOODSTOCK reveal ten more bands for 2017

As Spring creeps into Summer, BLOODSTOCK HQ is a hive of activity.  The ‘Metal 2 The Masses’ finals are well under way and plans are on track for 2017 being the biggest and best BLOODSTOCK yet!  Here’s ten more bands for starters…

 

BLOODSTOCK is delighted to now reveal that nefarious Nuclear Blast group DEVILMENT will join the bill at Catton Park this Summer.  Featuring the unmistakable vocals of Dani Filth, catch the band on the Ronnie James Dio main stage on Friday.  DEVILMENT declare, “Obviously the band are really looking forward to playing the festival, and as a English band it will definitely be an honour to play the main stage on what is tantamount to the best British festival out there. Hopefully festival goers will come and check DEVILMENT out, we intend on putting on quite a raucous heavy metal spectacle!”  If you’re not a loyal disciple already, get to grips with their most recent album, ‘Devilment II: The Mephisto Waltzes’, via their Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/devilmentcorps/ and watch the video for ‘Hitchcock Blonde’ – https://youtu.be/tQbZ-tQycEY.

 

Thursday’s headliner over on the Sophie Lancaster stage will be Helsinki’s own BATTLE BEAST!  With ferocious riffs galore, BATTLE BEAST are both heavy AND metal, perfect for opening night party shenanigans!  Bassist Eero comments, “We're psyched to be taking on BLOODSTOCK for the first time. We had a great time playing in the UK this spring, and it's really neat to be returning there so soon. Looking forward to seeing all our friends again soon!”  Check out the video for ‘Bringer Of Pain’, the title track from their most recent album, at: https://youtu.be/pBpv_pcUEIQ.

BLOODSTOCK can also announce the first batch of additions from the ‘Metal 2 The Masses’ finals!  Friday welcomes Coventry winners DEVIL’S PLAYGROUND, who combine hardcore vocals with power melodies (https://www.facebook.com/devil.playground) and modern metalheads MERITHIAN, who took top prize in the Swindon heat (https://www.facebook.com/MerithianOfficial).  Check out their lyric video for ‘Grow’ at: https://youtu.be/vnsGwZTJMgk.  Also brutalizing Friday are Brighton’s death metal victors ENSLAVEMENT (https://www.facebook.com/EnslavementUK), influenced by classics like Suffocation, Immolation, & Devourment.  On Saturday, Sheffield champions BA’AL add their blackened doom (www.facebook.com/baalsheff) plus Dublin’s top dogs ZHORA bring some progressive sludge a long way from Tipperary (https://www.facebook.com/zhOramusic/).  Sunday sees Slovenian doomsters MIST roll in, as part of the band exchange with MetalDays (www.facebook.com/mist.doom).  Originally all-female, the group builds on the legacy of acts like Black Sabbath, Candlemass, & Pentagram – hear it in ‘Phobia’ at: https://youtu.be/u7QwIwGk28w.  CD application conquerors HEATHEN DEITY join Sunday from the Midlands (https://www.facebook.com/heathendeityofficial).  Get into their esoteric lore and absolute blackness via ‘Gut The Church’ at https://youtu.be/414Y6aG-RUo.  Last but not least, melodic death metallers SHROUDED also join Sunday’s bill (https://www.facebook.com/shroudedband), having clinched first place in Belfast’s final.

 

Planning your travel to BLOODSTOCK yet?  Need a lift or driving there and want cash for your empty seats?  BLOODSTOCK have teamed up with GOCARSHARE again so you can rock out and reduce your carbon footprint at the same time.  Register where you’re travelling to/from, or your route, and then wait for drivers/passengers to get in touch!  GOCARSHARE is integrated with Facebook, so you can check out your possible travel buddies and they encourage travellers to post feedback.  Plus you might even win a pair of tickets for next year!  For full details, head over to http://gocarshare.com/festival/bloodstock.  Prefer to come by coach?  BIG GREEN COACH have 21 departure cities directly to BLOODSTOCK in 2017, from all over the UK.  They’ll bring you, all your camping gear and beer supplies, and drop you hassle free right inside the festival grounds.  Visit http://www.biggreencoach.co.uk/events/bloodstock-festival-tickets-coach-travel.

 

Already announced for 2017 are our three headliners AMON AMARTH, GHOST, and MEGADETH, plus ARCH ENEMY, KREATOR, BLIND GUARDIAN, HATEBREED, TESTAMENT, OBITUARY, KING 810, BRUJERIA, WHITECHAPEL, SKINDRED, POSSESSED, ANNIHILATOR, MUNICIPAL WASTE, HELL, DECAPITATED, SOILWORK, CHELSEA GRIN, MACABRE, INQUISITION, SCARAB, WINTERSUN, ONI, DENDERA, KROH, ABHORRENT DECIMATION, COURTESANS, WRETCHED SOUL, BOSSK, WINTERFYLLETH, GODS, BLIND HAZE, ARTHEMIS, SEASON’S END, BLIND RIVER, ENDEAVOUR, BLAAKYUM, DAKESIS, NORDJEVEL, TORQUED, BLACK MOTH, MANTAR, WOLFHEART, LIONIZE and BROKEN TEETH.  Many more are still be announced!  Stay tuned to BLOODSTOCK’s social media at https://www.facebook.com/bloodstock and https://twitter.com/bloodstockfest for the latest!

 

100 DAYS ‘TIL BLOODSTOCK!

With just 100 days to go, BLOODSTOCK is delighted to welcome Manchester bruisers BROKEN TEETH, as Sunday’s Ronnie James Dio main stage opener.  Signed to Nuclear Blast last year, the hardcore youngbloods are set to wake everyone up and pummel your hangover into submission!  Check out ‘Show No Mercy’ from their debut full-length ‘At Peace Amongst Chaos’ at https://youtu.be/Cppa15f4sFw.

 

Four more talented bands are joining the Last.fm-sponsored Sophie Lancaster stage bill.  Maryland, USA rockers LIONIZE (www.facebook.com/LIONIZEMUSIC/) bring the groove & funk to the party, and have been hard at work on their next record for new label The End (out this Summer), so expect a few new tunes!  Are you familiar with BLACK MOTH (www.facebook.com/themothpit/) yet?  If not, you soon will be!  Hailing from Leeds, Kerrang! describes them, “like Electric Wizard meets Band Of Skulls, in a dungeon.”  Finnish metal outfit WOLFHEART (www.facebook.com/WolfheartRealm/) swoop in to showcase their new album ‘Tyhjyys’, released in March via Spinefarm.  And if black metal blended with doom and punk catches your interest, don’t miss Nuclear Blast’s brutal German duo MANTAR (www.facebook.com/MantarBand/).  

 

After last year’s huge success, the 100%CA strongmen competition returns to the arena even bigger and better, and 2017 adds the women getting involved too!  Friday sees the ladies battling it out for England’s Strongest Woman, boasting an impressive line up of 8 Arnold's and 5 World's competitors as well as Jenny Todd (the reigning middleweight Arnold's champion) and Donna Moore (the current open weight Arnold's champion and World's Strongest Woman)!  Sponsored by XPLOSIVEAPE, there’s a £1200 prize up for grabs, a first for the women's sport.  Saturday brings the return of Europe’s Strongest Man u90kg.  Will reigning champ Rob Ward keep his hands on the title or will Tom Hibbert, Calum Evans, or Davy Wallace knock him off his throne?  Sunday’s finale offers a tiered prize pot of £2500 for the top 5 in XPLOSIVEAPE’s Strongest Man.  See some of the UK’s best athletes, including Graham Hick (current British log press holder, World's Strongest Man competitor, and third at Britain's), fast-rising demon Mark Steele, and current England's Strongest Man, Paul Smith.  Come along, cheer, and snap a photo with the strongest men and women in the country!

 

If that leaves you in need of refreshment, head over to KRAKEN’s Freaky Tiki black spiced rum bar, where you can indulge in dastardly concoctions amongst black palm trees, tiki torches, and shrunken heads. Adorn yourself with a black lei and keep an eye out for the KRAKEN Hunters patrolling the arena. Look for the totem pole, you won’t be able to miss it.

 

BLOODSTOCK’s also pleased to announce the return of the very popular JAGERMEISTER Stage, showcasing some of the hottest up’n’comers in heavy music. Bands performing will be revealed in the coming weeks!

 

If bourbon revs your engine, you’ll be thrilled to hear that BULLEIT are cruising in with their classic Studebaker truck bar, offering their infamous frontier whiskey, along with a host of other BULLEIT goodies! They might have a hair-raisin’ surprise up their sleeve too…

 

Prepare to be dazzled! Bringing their full production, BLOODSTOCK's three headliners for 2017 are AMON AMARTH, GHOST, and MEGADETH. Also already announced are ARCH ENEMY, KREATOR, BLIND GUARDIAN, HATEBREED, TESTAMENT, OBITUARY, KING 810, BRUJERIA, WHITECHAPEL, SKINDRED, POSSESSED, ANNIHILATOR, MUNICIPAL WASTE, HELL, DECAPITATED, SOILWORK, CHELSEA GRIN, MACABRE, INQUISITION, KING PARROT, SCARAB, WINTERSUN, ONI, DENDERA, KROH, ABHORRENT DECIMATION, COURTESANS, WRETCHED SOUL, BOSSK, WINTERFYLLETH, GODS, BLIND HAZE, ARTHEMIS, SEASON’S END, BLIND RIVER, ENDEAVOUR, BLAAKYUM, DAKESIS, NORDJEVEL, and TORQUED.  Many more are still to come!  Stay tuned to BLOODSTOCK’s social media at https://www.facebook.com/bloodstock and https://twitter.com/bloodstockfest for the latest!

BLOODSTOCK announces 10 more, plus the ‘Metal To The Masses’ finals kick off!

BLOODSTOCK has six more bands lined up for the Sophie Lancaster stage and four lucky bands win slots on the New Blood stage to celebrate the start of the ‘Metal To The Masses’ finals.

 

Landing slots on the Sophie Lancaster stage are Leeds metal trio BLIND HAZE (www.facebook.com/Blindhazeband), Italian power/classic metal outfit, ARTHEMIS (www.facebook.com/arthemis.official/), sludgy groove beasts GODS (www.facebook.com/therealgods), symphonic goth outfit SEASON’S END (www.facebook.com/seasons.end), Bristol progressive rockers ENDEAVOUR (www.facebook.com/EndeavourMetal) and classic rock n’ rollers, BLIND RIVER (www.facebook.com/pg/BlindRiverUK).

 

We’re also thrilled to welcome back Last.fm as sponsors of the Sophie Lancaster stage for 2017.  Check out their Spotify playlist of bands on the Sophie stage and get excited for August!  https://play.spotify.com/user/lastfmofficial/playlist/2mbVU7viKYgRh5CPhhOwl8. 

 

BLOODSTOCK’s ever tenacious search for the best breaking bands culminates soon with the kick off of the ‘Metal 2 The Masses’ finals on 22nd April.  The festival’s incentive to give up-and-coming acts a break by offering slots on the bill at Catton Park has helped give many acts a career launchpad and the finals see the M2TM team narrowing it down and picking their winners for 2017.  This year, M2TM ran in 29 UK regions, plus events in Ireland and Norway to find bands for the New Blood Stage.  Attendees at the finals can also win weekend festival tickets or prizes from our sponsors, Kraken rum and Hobgoblin ale.  The lucky bands winning a slot on the New Blood stage will also be in with a chance of landing extra goodies from our friends at Gibson Guitars, Studiomaster & Carlsbro or recording time with Russ Russell at his Parlour Studios in Northampton (http://www.parlourstudios.co.uk/).

 

Having won a slot on BLOODSTOCK’s New Blood stage in 2016, the Northern Irish band, THE CRAWLING are announced as winners of Metal 2 The Masses’ prize of a slot at the Slovenian festival, Metaldays.  Congratulations to them!

 

BLOODSTOCK is also proud to announce the first bands landing a slot on the Hobgoblin New Blood stage, hand picked from CD and online applications.  Hailing from Beirut, Lebanon are BLAAKYUM (www.facebook.com/blaakyum).  The band’s blend of thrash & groove metal is infused with crushing Middle Eastern percussion and oriental guitars.  Check out ‘Baal Adon’ live – https://youtu.be/6KwsoLIHKVE.  British power-proggers DAKESIS (www.facebook.com/dakesis) also land a slot.  The band’s sound ranges from powerful metal anthems to expansive, progressive instrumental and orchestral soundscapes.  Check out ‘The Great Insurrection’ here – https://youtu.be/a_rcIORrxFo.  Norway’s NORDJEVEL (www.facebook.com/nordjevelofficial) will bring some black metal to the New Blood bill.  Featuring ex-Ragnarok and Marduk members in their ranks, their pedigree is second to none.  Check out their video for ‘Djevelen I Nord’ here – https://youtu.be/zS1YAM7KdvQ.  Lastly, British groove metal animals, TORQUED (www.facebook.com/Torquedband) also win a slot.  They claim they’re here to ‘rip faces and blow gauges’.  Decide for yourself by checking out their set at in August!

 

Bands still wanting to throw their hat in the ring for a New Blood slot can apply via the Hobgoblin video upload platform – https://www.wychwood.co.uk, or by contacting [email protected] for further details.

 

Already announced for 2017 are our three headliners AMON AMARTH, GHOST, and MEGADETH, plus ARCH ENEMY, KREATOR, BLIND GUARDIAN, HATEBREED, TESTAMENT, OBITUARY, KING 810, BRUJERIA, WHITECHAPEL, SKINDRED, POSSESSED, ANNIHILATOR, MUNICIPAL WASTE, HELL, DECAPITATED, SOILWORK, CHELSEA GRIN, MACABRE, INQUISITION, KING PARROT, SCARAB, WINTERSUN, ONI, DENDERA, KROH, ABHORRENT DECIMATION, COURTESANS, WRETCHED SOUL, BOSSK, and WINTERFYLLETH.  Many more are still be announced!  Stay tuned to BLOODSTOCK’s social media at https://www.facebook.com/bloodstock and https://twitter.com/bloodstockfest for the latest!

Bloodstock confirm GHOST as final headliner for 2017

BLOODSTOCK are very excited to announce GHOST as their Saturday night headliner!

This will be GHOST’s first ‘ritual’ at BLOODSTOCK and watching their amazing stage show after dark is sure to be quite the religious experience!  Check out a taster of what might be in store via this clip from Hellfest 2016 – https://youtu.be/JNCbvDIOeT4

A Nameless Ghoul informs us “We are absolutely chuffed to finally be playing at the classic BLOODSTOCK.  Over the years we have heard so many great things about it and now, to be able to headline one of the nights, is a great honour and we are very much looking forward to it.  Thank you all and see you there!"

GHOST, who are hot off the back of their Popestar UK tour, channel the early sounds of Black Sabbath, Pentagram, Judas Priest and Mercyful Fate, as well as elements of prog and late '60s psych rock, so couldn’t be more at home on Catton Park’s hallowed turf.  Papa and the Ghouls current album, ‘Meliora’ spawned the Grammy Award-winning track, ‘Cirice’, the video for which has clocked up almost 16 million views on YouTube – https://youtu.be/-0Ao4t_fe0I.  ‘Meliora’ was followed in September 2016 by their critically lauded ‘Popestar’ EP, featuring the hugely sticky ‘Square Hammer’ – https://youtu.be/VqoyKzgkqR4.   We can’t wait to welcome them to Catton Park in August!

Already announced for 2017 are Friday’s headliners AMON AMARTH, Sunday’s headliners MEGADETH, plus ARCH ENEMY, KREATOR, BLIND GUARDIAN, HATEBREED, TESTAMENT, OBITUARY, KING 810, BRUJERIA, WHITECHAPEL, SKINDRED, POSSESSED, ANNIHILATOR, MUNICIPAL WASTE, HELL, DECAPITATED, SOILWORK, CHELSEA GRIN, MACABRE, INQUISITION, KING PARROT, SCARAB, WINTERSUN, ONI, DENDERA, KROH, ABHORRENT DECIMATION, COURTESANS, WRETCHED SOUL, BOSSK, and WINTERFYLLETH.  Many more are still be announced!  Stay tuned to BLOODSTOCK’s social media at https://www.facebook.com/bloodstock and https://twitter.com/bloodstockfest for the latest!

 

 

BLOODSTOCK unveils their second 2017 headliner

BLOODSTOCK is excited to kick off the New Year by announcing MEGADETH as their Sunday night headliner!

MEGADETH’s mainman, Dave Mustaine tells us “We kick off 2017 by announcing we'll be headlining Sunday night at Bloodstock, one of my favourite, purely metal, British festivals!  Megadeth had a blast last time and I can't wait to bring the Dystopia World Tour to Bloodstock this Summer.  See ya at Catton Park in August!"

MEGADETH were recently nominated for a Grammy in the ‘Best Metal Performance’ category for the title track of their current critically acclaimed ‘Dystopia’ album.  Check it out here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bK95lWHl7js and grab a copy of ‘Dystopia’ here

Also available now is the very popular ticket deposit scheme!  The payment plan helps ease the ‘big lump’ shock of paying for your standard weekend ticket by breaking it up into five smaller, more manageable sums.  You can sign up in the ticket store at any time from now until 28th Feb, with an initial payment of £34.80 payable on sign-up.  Thereafter, four additional instalments of £27.80 will debit your bank account on 1st April, May, June and July respectively.  Get full details over at http://bloodstock.seetickets.com/content/ticket-options.

If you have Scuzz TV, check out GOJIRA's incredible full set from BLOODSTOCK 2016 which is being broadcast regularly on the channel!  Watch the trailer here: https://youtu.be/yLZT5Ao7o8M.  The show will be repeated on the channel all through January.

Already announced for 2017 are Friday’s headliners AMON AMARTH, plus BLIND GUARDIAN, HATEBREED, TESTAMENT, OBITUARY, BRUJERIA, WHITECHAPEL, SKINDRED, POSSESSED, ANNIHILATOR, MUNICIPAL WASTE, HELL and DECAPITATED.  Many more are still to come!  Stay tuned to BLOODSTOCK’s social media for the latest!

BLOODSTOCK unveils first 2017 bands

BLOODSTOCK is thrilled to announce a bumper batch of Ronnie James Dio main stage bands for 2017, including their Friday night headliner!

Prepare your drinking horns!! Swedish overlords, AMON AMARTH will be sailing their Viking longboat on to the Catton Park shore as Friday night’s headline band!  Chief berzerker Johan Hegg declares, "What's up UK!  On August 11th 2017, we are invading BLOODSTOCK!  It's going to be a fucking awesome party, with immense bloodshed and you better be there!"  Get ready for battle and raise your horns with us via their latest video at https://youtu.be/Ndu33Uv7Aco.

Landing the special guest slot on Friday are power metal kingpins, BLIND GUARDIAN.  Their set will be a UK exclusive for 2017. BLOODSTOCK prides itself on being by the fans, for the fans, and are pleased to welcome one of the fans most requested acts to the lineup. If you’re not familiar, you’ve three decades of music to investigate, but why not start with the more recent ‘Twlight Of The Gods’, at: https://youtu.be/Ep1B_aIFPDE.

Bay Area thrash beasts, TESTAMENT are set for a Friday slot.  With their crushing brand new album, ‘Brotherhood Of The Snake’, released just a week ago by Nuclear Blast, check out the awesome video for new song ‘The Pale King’ at https://youtu.be/wkHT86Ei7DY.

Hardcore kings, HATEBREED make a welcome return to Catton Park on Saturday. Check out their video for ‘Looking Down The Barrel of Today’ from current album, ‘The Concrete Confessional’ here.  Expect firebrand frontman, Jamey Jasta to play ringmaster to some epic circle pit activity, so get your pit skills honed in preparation!

Also landing a spot on the Ronnie James Dio main stage over the weekend are Tennessee deathcore beasts, WHITECHAPEL, seminal death metallers, POSSESSED and flying the flag for English heavy metal, BLOODSTOCK favourites, HELL.

Andrew WK, In Flames, Testament and more added to Download 2015 lineup

Hard-partying punk philosopher Andrew W.K. will make his debut at Download festival in 2015. The rocker cum self-help guru cum motivational speaker has been tirelessly spreading his philosophy of partying over the past decade, delivering lectures at such revered institutions as Oxford and Yale Universities. But in 2015 he will finally take his place on the most prestigious stage of all when he performs at Donington for the first time.

The man himself feels that the iconic festival will be inkeeping with his lifestyle:

Aaaaahhhhhhrrrrgggaaaa!!! I'm totally chuffed about playing and partying at my first ever Download! I've no doubt that it will be partier than even the partiest party I've ever been to!

Swedish metal giants In Flames will also return to Download in 2015; the infernal five-piece spent much of 2014 in the recording studio but are set to roar back on to the UK live scene to set Europe’s biggest rock and metal festival alight this summer.

Lead singer Anders Friden said: 

It will be fantastic to be back on UK soil. Download has always been a great festival. We’re looking forward to meeting friends and playing our take on heavy metal in front of some of the greatest fans that there is.

They will be joined by seminal thrash heavyweights Testament seven years on from their only previous Download performance.

Guitarist Alex Skolnick looked forward to rejoining the pantheon of British rock and metal: I recall reading about Download as a teen, seeing early pics of Maiden, AC/DC and other greats all sharing a bill there (back when it was "Castle Donington"), thinking how lucky they have it in the UK and dreaming about one day playing an incredible event like that with so many bands. Well, dreams can come true, so on behalf of all of Testament, let me say how thrilled we are to be appearing at Download 2015!

Following his surprise departure from Asking Alexandria last week, Danny Worsnop’s new project, We Are Harlot – whose music draws on the awesome tradition of its 1980s classic rock forebears – are also bound for Download 2015.

Grunge legends L7’s addition to the line-up is their first confirmed UK live date in over fifteen years. Having lit up the musical world with their refreshingly grizzly sound and their resolute, tampon-chucking, live-TV-panty-dropping, one-night-stand-raffling refusal to give a f**k, L7enraptured fans by announcing that they were once more ‘hungry for stink’ at the end of 2014.

Among other renowned acts joining the line-up are titanic metal supergroup Hellyeah, featuring former Mudvayne singer Chad Gray,Nothingface guitarist Tom Maxwell and legendary Pantera and Damageplan drummer Vinnie Paul.

US metallers All That Remains add yet more bulk to the bill with their huge choruses and relentless driving melodies.

Homegrown horror rockers Fearless Vampire Killers also bring their inimitable iron-clad gothic theatricality to the line-up, fresh from the release of new album Unbreakable Hearts.

Guitarist and co-vocalist Kier Kemp looked ahead to the festival: 

Download's line-up totally fucking owns this year! We're just super happy to be part of it all again. We've been working on a lot of stuff behind the scenes. New material, new direction and this will mark a new era for FVK. Download is going to be the perfect forum to show this all to the world.

Elsewhere, ahead of their headline performance, Kiss’ former axe man Ace Frehley will hit Download with a sharp dose of his distinctively grungy sound following the release of mega album Space Invader in 2014.

On bringing his solo project to Donington Frehley said: 

I'm really looking forward to rockin' out in the UK at Download…It's been 7 years since my last appearance and my new band kicks ass!

Acclaimed Alter Bridge and Creed shredder, Mark Tremonti, is also added to the line-up under the guise of his hard-rocking solo act Tremonti, which sees him team up with fellow rock royal Wolfgang Van Halen on bass, with the duo having confirmed recently that they are working on a new album.

His fellow hard rockers and hellraising progeny of Thin Lizzy, Black Star Riders, will share material from their hugely anticipated new album,The Killer Instinct, with the Download faithful for the first time.

British rockers Thunder are also confirmed ahead of the release of their first record in six years, Wonder Days, which is due for release in February.

Thunder’s Danny Bowes said:

Download is one of my favourite festivals in the world, so I can’t wait for June to come around. Donington was where we made our mark back in 1532 [sic], so it's fitting somehow to be back at Download this year when we release 'Wonder Days', our first studio album for 6 years, and it’ll be great to see how the new tracks go down alongside the classics. The Download crowd is always amazing, so as my dear old Mum used to say, "Let’s have it!”…

They will be joined by melodic metalcore superstars The Ghost Inside, following the release of their massive album Dear Youth last November.

As well as these rock and metal icons, Download 2015 will provide a platform for some of the genres’ finest young pretenders; King 810 have shot to the attention of rock fans over the past year, having had to pull out from last year’s festival at the last minute, and, fresh from their slot on Slipknot’s mammoth ‘Prepare For Hell’ Tour, Flint’s finest are ready for an all-action, all-conquering performance at Download.

Their fellow debutants Defeater’s Donington debut last year was also thwarted – by an injury to frontman Derek Archambault – but the Boston hardcore mob return stronger than ever in 2015 take their rightful place among rock’s live elite.

Also making their Donington bow are Utah deathcore maniacs Chelsea Grin, who join the line-up following the success of their savage 2014 record Ashes to Ashes.

For vocalist Alex Koehler, the band’s Download appearance represents the fulfilment of a long-held dream: We're all looking forward to playing Download festival this year. Ever since I watched Slipknot's live DVD filmed at download, I've been dying to experience it first-hand.

Local cult heroes, Nottingham metallers Evil Scarecrow, will be scuttling South West along the A52 to unleash the mighty Crabulon on unsuspecting legions of festivalgoers.

Frontman Dr Hell said: 

The first festival I attended was Metallica at Donington Park in 1994. Since that life altering occasion it’s been my lifelong ambition to play this hallowed ground and I finally, finally get to shout “Scream for me Donington!”. We are totally stocked beyond all belief. We are working on a very special show for this, one that will defy the world of physics.

Swedish metalheads Bombus will also fly into Donington for the first time armed to the teeth with their uncompromising breed of barnstorming, balls-out heavy metal, while Brighton punk rockers Gnarwolves make their biggest festival appearance to date, building on the release of their eponymous breakthrough album last year.

If that isn’t enough, alt-power-rockers Hands Like Houses add to the booming Australian delegation, while cult hardcore punks Stray from the Path also hit Download for the first time, as do hotly tipped punk rock tyros, Creeper and the new project form the post-hardcore marauders formerly known as ClimateBlood Youth.

Hands Like Houses see being part of the festival’s bill as the rock world’s ultimate bragging right: 

We are beyond excitement in announcing we'll be playing at Download Festival 2015! It's a huge honour to be invited to be part of such a massive bill and can't wait to get back to the UK for such an iconic rock event!

Blood Youth also looked forward to their debut: It’s every bands dream to be able to play a festival of such magnitude and legendary status. To say we've been given that opportunity is unreal and we're damn grateful. We look forward to tearing it up alongside so many great bands and hope to see you there.

This deluge of talent flooding Donington Park from June 12-14 will be joined by headliners SlipknotMuse and Kiss, main support Judas PriestFaith No More and Mötley Crüe and rock and metal megastars Black Stone CherryEnter ShikariMarilyn MansonFive Finger Death PunchA Day To RememberSlash and Miles KennedyBlack Veil BridesLamb of GodRise AgainstBill IdolParkway Drive,Hollywood UndeadClutchBody CountEagles of Death MetalGodsmackMallory KnoxMotionless in WhiteMadballEvery Time I DieDragonforceBackyard BabiesCrown the EmpireNorthlane and H.E.A.T.

Testament added to Bloodstock 2012 lineup

One of the first thrash bands to emerge from the San Francisco Bay Area, debut album “The Legacy” put TESTAMENT at the forefront of the thrash metal scene, where they have remained for the best part of thirty years.

Testament

Says guitarist Eric Peterson:

“We're excited to play the "Bloodstock Festival" again! this time with some new material to play! Can't wait for the UK to hear our "Dark Roots Of Earth!" See Ya!”

With nine studio albums under their belt – two of which boasting top 40 chart positions in the UK – and a new album on its way, TESTAMENT come armed with no shortage of classic thrash anthems. One of the few bands to consistently put out genuinely exciting and fresh material throughout their career, the promise of hearing songs from the likes of The Legacy, The New Order, Practice What You Preach, Souls Of Black, The Ritual, Low, Demonic, The Gathering and The Formation Of Damnation – as well as new material – is enough to whet any headbangers appetite, and one many will find impossible to resist.

With tickets selling faster than ever before, BLOODSTOCK 2012 is destined for a sell-out this year. Over 100 bands – the majority of which are exclusive appearances – and a ticket price of only £115 for four days of metal magic INCLUDING camping – BLOODSTOCK offers metalheads the most attractive ticket in the UK. Get yours now from www.bloodstock.uk.com