My Saturday at Download began over at the main stage where I caught the retro new wave of classic rock act Those Damn Crows, a band who have amassed a significant following in Wales thanks to appearances at the likes of Steelhouse Festival and other rock-oriented affairs. Possibly one of the smallest acts to perform on the main stage this year, the band spared no expense offering a fantastic wake-up call with some unremarkable if solid hard rock tunes. The day’s proceedings then continued firmly in the rocky territory with a southern, slightly heavier twang with Black Label Society, in their first festival appearance on UK soil since 2015, and with less of Zakk Wylde’s expectedly lengthy and tiresome soloing. Don’t get me wrong, Zakk was still doing his usual thing, but with a much-needed addition of percussion, making the moments of instrumental wankery much more palatable than usual.
After a prolonged absence from the British metal scene courtesy of the COVID-19 pandemic (save for a scaled-back pilot event in 2021), Leicestershire’s iconic summer rock, punk, and metal weekender, Download Festival returned to Castle Donnington in a maximalist blaze of glory, packing in a full-scale 5-day experience with some familiar favorites, hotly tipped up-and-comers and some of the best international acts that rock and metal scene has to offer.
Returning to the USA for the first time since 2019, Parkway Drive has been announced as the Co-Headliner for ShipRocked 2023! They join Falling In Reverse atop a bill that includes Nothing More, Skillet, Suicidal Tendencies, Motionless In White, grandson, Ayron Jones, and over a dozen others. The January 22-28, 2023 sailing on Carnival Magic will feature Parkway Drive’s first American performance since spring of 2019.
Rocklahoma will celebrate its 15th anniversary this year and has put together a great lineup for the party! This year, Rocklahoma will make its Labor Day Weekend Party America’s biggest as the three-day camping festival features some of today’s top rock artists, including Korn, Five Finger Death Punch, Shinedown, Evanescence, Megadeth, Seether, Three Days Grace, Cypress Hill, Jelly Roll, and more! Rocklahoma takes place on Friday, September 2, Saturday, September 3, and Sunday, September 4 at Pryor Creek Music Festival Grounds in Pryor, Oklahoma, just outside of Tulsa. Produced by AEG Presents and original Rocklahoma founders Pryor Creek Music Festivals, Rocklahoma showcases the best new rock acts and classic artists performing on three stages. With onsite camping amenities and unparalleled VIP packages, Rocklahoma lives up to its motto of “Life, Liberty & the Pursuit of Rock.”
Whether it is due to the day-job of Fozzy frontman Chris Jericho, or their weird roots and route, stumbling into being a “proper band” by evolving from a high-profile covers act formed by former Stuck Mojo six-stringer Rich Ward, rightly or wrongly (and the answer is wrongly, by the way), it took 2017’s breakout anthem ‘Judas’ (from the album of the same name), a bona-fide fists-in-the-air voices-to-the-sky classic anthem, to put a stamp of credibility on the twenty-year labour of musical love of Ward and Jericho and push them headfirst through the glass ceiling and into the next level of mainstream consciousness.
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Eleven albums deep and showing no signs of slowing down, alternative metal tour de force Skillet enter their twenty-sixth year of existence with Dominion (WMG / Atlantic), a collection of big rocking tunes, expertly polished and produced, which continues in their now trademark vein. We get the arena stompers, the WWE PPV-ready (or premium live event as they seem to now be known as) montage accompaniers, the saccharine reflective synth and strings ballad, and the chirpy up-tempo deeper cuts.
Download Festival 2021 is postponed to summer 2022, but the fest has wasted little time stacking the bill. Already headlined by Iron Maiden, KISS, and Biffy Clyro, seventy new bands have been added including Deftones, Korn, Megadeth, Steel Panther, The Ghost Inside, Funeral For A Friend, Descendents, Electric Wizard, and Sepultura. Watch a video teaser with the updated poster and buy your tickets now!
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Download Festival will return for 2021, featuring headliners KISS, Biffy Clyro, and System Of A Down and many more bands including A Day To Remember, Mastodon, Control The Storm, Gender Roles, Jamie Lenman, Myles Kennedy & Company, Deftones, Korn, The Distillers, Steel Panther, Frank Carter & The Rattlesnakes, The Darkness, Black Veil Brides, Creeper, Alestorm and The Pretty Reckless. Seventy-three bands in all have been announced! Tickets go on sale on August 7th at 9 AM GMT. More bands have yet to be announced. The three-day festival takes place on 4-6 June 2021 at the spiritual home of rock in Donington Park, Leicestershire. Tickets will go on sale at this link here. Continue reading