Bands: Rotting Christ, Children of Bodom, Tesseract, Powerwolf, Sabaton, Grand Magnus, Evil Scarecrow, Anthrax, Parkway Drive, Ross The Boss, Cradle of Filth, Batushka, Scorpions, Eluveitie
Venue: Catton Park, DerbyshireDates: 8th - 11th August 2019
make a habit of going to Bloodstock every year as it is one
of my favorite festival spots. I also like to make sure I am
there bloody early to catch as many bands as possible.
Unfortunately, the bus en route managed to break down
meaning I missed most of Thursdays action! Thankfully, I did
manage to make it across to the Sophie Lancaster stage to
catch headliners ROTTING CHRIST who put on a dazzling display.
The Greek black metal gods had the audience in the palm of their hands lashing through choice cuts from their latest studio outing along with back catalogue classics. Personal highlights were ‘Under the name of legion’, King of a ‘Stellar War’ and the finale of ‘Non Serviam’. Clearly enjoying another headline slot on the hallowed grounds of Catton Park Rotting Christ set an incredible benchmark for the weekend.
pissed from the night before I never managed to make it out
of my tent till at least 12’o clock where my day began
with DEATH ANGEL.
Californian metallers dished out a merciless assault
featuring ‘Voracious Souls’, ‘The Moth’ and ‘Humanicide’.
Following the thrash metal beating, CHILDREN
OF BODOM flew out of the gates with crowd pleaser ‘Are
you Dead Yet?’ and kept the levels of extremity on full
throttle till the finish of ‘Hate Crew Deathroll’.
their first appearance at Bloodstock TESSERACT
were eager to please and didn’t disappoint. Trudging
through meaty progressive laden riffs Milton Keyenes finest
made sure plenty of heads were banging and fists were
were unquestionably the highlight of Friday sending
Bloodstock into a complete power metal frenzy for their
hour-long slot. I
am not a personal fan of the band but you cannot ignore how
bloody entertaining this band is and how incredibly catchy
their songs are. From opener of ‘Fire and Forgive’ one
could not help but get carried away to the sing along likes
are a Girls best Friend’ and ‘Resurrection by
Headliners SABATON were tasked with following and it was a step too far for the Swede’s. As impressive as their stage show looked, something just didn’t translate and they came across sounding incredibly flat.
all was lost as salvation was found on the Sophie Lancaster
stage in the form of GRAND
MAGUS. Exploding with ‘I, the Jury’ was a total kick
up the arse! Settling into their Groove the riff lords
launched through cuts such as ‘Dawn of Fire’ and
‘Kinglsayer’ before closing the night with the
sing-along classic ‘Hammer of the North’.
EVIL SCARECROW has
become synonymous with Bloodstock acting as resident house
band that play literally every other year. Not that I am
complaining as they are entertaining and every metal head
loves a gimmick band. The likes of ‘Robototron’ and
‘Crabulon’ had the crowded main stage area moving in
synchronicity to the slapstick lyrics with plenty of jibes
amusing the metal masses. As for the rest of Saturday it got
a bit dicey as extreme wind conditions threatened the
remainder of the performances.
of Filth was postponed till the Sunday and it was
questionable whether any more bands would be playing.
Thankfully, the wind died down just enough to allow ANTHRAX
to deliver the greatest hits set to end all greatest
hits sets. Ripping through fan favorites such as ‘Caught
in a Mosh’, ‘Madhouse’, and ‘I am the Law’ ensued
plenty of moshing and revelry. Sing-along classics ‘Got
the Time’, ‘Anti-Social’ were also slayed before the
finale of ‘Indians’.
DRIVE were untouchable delivering one of the best
performances I have ever seen at Bloodstock . With a
stunning light show, enough pyro to match Rammstein concert
and a string quartet in tow, the Australian metallers
absolutely owned the stage silencing haters within seconds.
The likes of ‘Prey’, ‘Wild Eyes’, ‘Vice Grip’ & ‘Karma’ had the Bloodstock faithful in a state of frenzy while ‘Shadow Boxing’ and ‘Writings on the Wall’ provided respites from the pandemonium. An encore of ‘Crushed’ and ‘Bottom Feeder’ sent the main arena into a final run of head banging, fist pumping euphoria proving Parkway Drive deserve to be headlining the biggest festival stages in years to come.
on site, ROSS THE
BOSS warmed up with a set jammed full of Manowar covers.
KK Downing was introduced as a special guest in the latter
half before burning through Priest classics ‘The Green
Manalishi’ and ‘Breaking the Law’.
Better late than never CRADLE OF FILTH lead down the narrow path of all things black and macabre. Smashing out belters like ‘Malice through the Looking Glass’, ‘Nymphetamine’ & ‘Her Ghost in the Fog’ prove to be nothing but exhilarating.
all the drama surrounding BATUSHKA,
it is difficult to disregard just how extraordinary this
spectacle is. With an ambitious stage show made up of
candles, elaborate costumes & church backdrops it’s
like nothing I have ever seen before (think black metal
overtones with church chanting at a séance and that’s
probably what you have on offer here).
expected, filled the floor and sounded polished to
perfection. Cramming as much of their 50 plus year history
into an hour and a half there was stacks on offer.
‘Blackout’, ‘Big City Nights’, ‘Coast to Coast’
and ‘The Zoo’ had the crowd going batty and frothing at
the mouth. With invincible swagger softer tunes ‘Send me
an Angel’ and ‘Wind of Change’ united Catton Park
sounding absolutely enormous. In suitable fashion ‘Rock
you like a Hurricane’ was the swansong for the evening and
was gladly welcomed into a very rewarding set.
Review & Photos by: Rob Herald
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