Left home for Download on Thursday 14.00 in Morrison. Uneventful trip, but I took notice of the driving instructions on the motorway which took me off at an earlier junction than I’d anticipated. This route went through loads of winding lanes. Think it would have been easier to go by the main route. Arrived at the RIP camping ground, which looked a bit on the full side. Seems most people had arrived on Wednesday. A little concerned about the state of the ground, and whether I would be able to get out on Monday. There had been reports of torrential rain, and some festival-goers were already giving up and going home. This had incited a Twitter spat where some of those who go to Glastonbury tweeted, I thought Metal fans were hard. The RIP field though was pretty green, except for the areas around the loos, showers and food stalls.
After checking in and parking, I went into the Park Farmhouse complex where there was a good real ale bar, food and bands playing. Listened to a two-person tribute band, who when I arrived were playing some Metallica. Had several pints, and ate supper there. Then discovered the bar had closed. I think they had run out of real ales. Sad, I went back to the campervan and read a book.
Friday Def Leppard or Rob Zombie
Friday is a late start for the music, so no rush in the morning. Started the day off with a shower, and then a breakfast of bacon and hash browns in a roll. Went through to the VIP area and ordered a cappuccino and a sticky nut oatcake.
Last In Line
First band the main stage, played for 30 minutes, my thoughts were a boring rock band.
Sacremento based rockers, quite an enjoyable band. Rained during their show, not heavily.
Atlanta based quintet formed in 2000.
Southern rock, lots of grinding riffs, an enjoyable set. Short drizzle during their set.
A British band, playing some good songs, a great drum solo from Tommy Aldridge. This band has been going since 1978 and has had around fifty band members.
Slash featuring Myles Kennedy and the Conspirators
Slash was his usual self, playing away on the side of the stage.
It was a question of watching Def Leppard, who I have seen live before or watching something different, so I went to the Zippo stage to watch Rob Zombie. The Zippo stage was crowded and I was way at the back. Not a good choice.
So during the day it did rain a little, normally short, light showers. The arena was green on entry, but turned into mud during the day. Not like Glastonbury mud. By the end of the day I felt the ground was drier than the start. The bars were virtually inaccessible, with huge queues. I hate queues and ended up drinking coffee.
Saturday and Slipknot
The day started sunny, and it was definitely drier underfoot. Changed my allegiance for breakfast to another food vendor, this one did a lovely fried egg and bacon roll, with filter coffee. Then more coffee and oatcake in the VIP place. While I was waiting for this second coffee I overheard some kiwis talking about Brits in NZ who don’t use sunscreen. So I said hi, I had been to NZ and it just rained all the time. During a conversation about the merits of the North and South Islands, they mentioned that the first band on the main stage was a New Zealand band.
A young trio performing some very heavy metal. Many of the lyrics and chants were in Māori also known as te reo. They are on a North American and European tour and have an album called Tū. Well worth listening to.
The unlikely looking band, well dressed, chatty humourous lead singer. All wearing red jackets accessorised with a pearl necklace. At the end, they played some Metallica.
Dallas Texas band, complete with shouting and lots of fist punching. Their slogan was ‘ Powerful people, we must fight them’
European band, anti-Christ. Kept going off and coming back in with new costumes. Fire and smoke. Loved the 3 nuns in the audience dancing at the front. After watching them, I went and bought Vegan Sushi and ate it in the rain.
British band. The only song I knew was at the end of their set when we all jumped and whirled our coats around. Their set was packed. Rained throughout their set, pity the ground was drying out.
Stopped raining and sun about to come out. US band from Atlanta, but they call Donnington home. All these bands do.
Hate this type of music, so instead I went around for a walk of the site. Found the real ale bar and had a Charles Welles pint. Then I went up on to the Pepsi Max platform to look over the sit. Then back to the campsite area for a sit down and another beer. Walked back for Slipknot
Started a little late. First band to start late. Traditional apparently. Anyway they were headlining, so not constrained for time. I quite like Slipknot.
Sunday and Tool
Started off a little sunny, but a tad cold. Thought I might wear a little more, but luckily didn’t. Not so cold when I got to the arena. Bought some sun tan cream on the way, was a bit burnt on my face yesterday, especially my nose. Guarantee it will be totally cloudy today.
The band seemed to have problems setting up at the start. It was also the first time I have seen band members actually doing some of the work themselves. They ordered circles in the audience to be created. Not quite seen a circle quite like this one before. Some old people (“old people” being anyone older than me) should be banned from participating in these. Everyone lolloped around the circle. Oh, when the circle was created I realised I was in an empty space. I panicked and ran for it.
Not a bad gig, so I celebrated with a Falafel for lunch. Must practice the pronunciation of this word. I have sorted out Huawei!
From Michigan, younger singer, with a broken foot, also seemed to fall off the stage at one point. Started to rain at the end. Headed for RIP bar to escape the rain. Now the sun is out while waiting for Underoath
From Tampa. Rain again.
Sully Erna the lead singer founded the Scars foundation to help raise awareness of the mental health issues that so many are faced with today. Sully had faced an overwhelming number of fellow artists and friends who had committed suicide over the past few years.
The band is unforgettable, something different. Loved the two drum kits which came on for a short period, enjoyed this band.
Lots of vikings, horns, fighting and fire. Swedish band who are named after the volcano in the Lord of the Rings. (And yes, I do know; real Vikings did not have horns on their helmets.)
Lamb of God
Richmond, Virginia. Great circles and crowd surfing. Left area for a break, so lost my position on the side rail. Still managed to get quite near it.
The Smashing Pumpkins
Had a strange set with three inflatable dolls.
Tool were a revelation, never played their music in the past. It is now something I will listen to constantly. The images on the set were bizarre, but fun. There were no projections of the band, so if you were far back you would never have seen them.
Picked up some chips on the way home to Morrison.
Monday morning I was away at around 7.30, no issues driving out. On arriving home, R screamed at the state of my nose (not to mention my clothes).