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Download 2015

‘Funeral For A Friend’

Download 2015

Other acts announced: Yellowcard, Suicidal Tendencies, Lacuna Coil, Krokodil, Antemasque, Three Days Grace, Malefice, The Wild Lies, Upon A Burning Body, September Mourning, Von Hertzen Brothers, The Qemists, Colour of Noise, LTNT, Blues Pills, Fidlar, Get Hot, Chunk, No, Captain Chunk!, E of E, The Struts, Like A Storm, The Cadillac Three and The Lounge Kittens.

Download Festival 2015 takes place June 12-14.

With, unbelievably, less than two months to go until Download 2015, the finishing touches are being added to this year’s masterpiece of a line-up, and today sees twenty five more flashes of colour streaking the tableau of Europe’s biggest rock and metal festival.

Seminal post hardcore megaliths Funeral For A Friend make a first appearance in four years following the release of January’s enormous record Chapter and Verse.

Singer Matthew Davies-Kreye said: Download is a festival very close to our hearts and we’re thrilled to have been invited back this year alongside some amazing bands.

Alaskan metalcore steamroller 36 Crazyfists are also basking in the glory of a huge new album, February’s Time and Trauma and will join FFAF in taking their place on the mainstage.

A long lost friend will also return as, amid reports that a new album is in the works, heavy metal titans Corrosion of Conformity, freshly reunited with vocalist/guitarist Pepper Keenan, come to Donington for the first time in twenty years having played Monsters of Rock in 1995, while a new friend arrives in the form of legendary Liverpudlian metallers Carcass give Download a first ever fistful of their mastery of every extreme genre from goregrind to melodic death metal.

For Carcass the appearance is the fulfilment of a long-held dream: Well, after years of badgering Andy Copping he has finally broken and agreed to let us despoil Download! We’re genuinely excited to finally get to play Castle Donington after all these years – maybe this time without rolling Landrovers and cracking shoulder bones on the journey there (a LONG story!). We hope to see some of you at a loose end, with no one better to watch at CARCASS’ ONLY UK festival appearance this Summer!

Corrosion of Conformity’s prodigal son Pepper Keenan was similarly excited about making along-awaited return: Super stoked about getting back to download with COC, always an honour. It’s been waaaaay to long. Up the f***in hammers!

Another band to have a huge influence over their genre are pop-punk giants Yellowcard who make their first Download appearance when they headline the third stage on Sunday night.

One of the most distinctive and angry voices of their (or any) generation, crossover thrash frontiersmen Suicidal Tendencies play Download for the first time in five years following a(nother) hiatus and reunion, headlining the fourth stage on Sunday night.

Also making a long awaited return, having not played since 2009 are Gothic-ambient-alt metal sirens Lacuna Coil, playing the main stage on Friday afternoon.

Elsewhere, homegrown supergroup Krokodil take their composite members’ most brutal musical sensibilities and crush them into some of the most soulsplittingly raucous groove metal on the scene, while another supergroup, this time from across the pond, Antemasque, features former members of The Mars Volta and At The Drive-In, blending the prog, funk and punk rock for which their progenitors were renowned to tumultuous effect.

Krokodil looked forward to returning to the site of one of their early triumphs: It’s going to be so good to be back where it all began for us, so much has happened since our first show at Download 2013. Now the record’s out, it only seems right to be back there tearing sh*t up again with full f****ng force! Download, we’re coming for you.

Canadian stadium rockers Three Days Grace will also (surprise!) join the line-up, while Reading thrash merchants Malefice will return following the planned release of a brand new E.P in May, and fellow homegrown axe-wielders The Wild Lies will provide a straight-up shot of pure undiluted classic hard rock.

Sharp dressed Texas deathcore desperados Upon A Burning Body will return to Donington having been denied their Download appearance last year when singer Danny Leal was taken ill at the last minute. But will they join recent collaborator Ice-T on the bill for their recent Pop Goes Pnk smash, Turn Down For What? we hear you ask…

Leal looked forward to regaining his birthright: DOWNLOAD! We are excited to be on this year’s line-up. Having to cancel last year was so upsetting for us and we do apologize. We are pumped and ready to come see all of you guys and completely make up for last year. Come say hello and let’s crush this year!

Another act who had to had to pull out of their 2014 performance but return in 2015 is September Mourning, the alternative rock sect of the eponymous transmedia Gothic culture project, who take to Donington for the first time ahead of the release of their debut album.

If all that doesn’t dust your fretboard, Finnish folk-prog goliaths Von Hertzen Brothers will also set off on their maiden Donington expedition following the release of epic album, New Day Rising in March.

Also gracing Donington for the first time will be Brighton hard rock-breakbeats crossover maniacs The Qemists fresh from the release of their new album Warrior Sound, whose fellow Brightonians, classic rockers Colour of Noise make their debut ahead of the release of their eponymous debut album in September, while Londoners LTNT are another act embarking on a first tour of duty.

Swedish-American banditos Blues Pills combine smoky blues with thunderous hard rock powered by singer Elin Larsson’s incredible vocals, while surf/skate punks Fidlar are another act due to make their Download debut this year, as are homegrown dub-rave-punk experimentalists Get Hot.

Chunk, No, Captain Chunk! the French ‘easycore’ exports, will also make their first appearance, while fellow pop punk debutantes and Kerrang! Best Newcomer Award nominees E of E will be making the comparatively short trip from Dudley.

Coming from an even shorter distance are anthemic Derby rockers The Struts bringing with them a whole sackful of soaring choruses.

Blowing in from New Zealand to join compatriots Rival State on the bill come Like A Storm, who, as well as gaining a string of admirers for their mix of Spaghetti-Western swagger and hard rock steel, are one of the few rock bands to fully realise the awesome seismic power of the didgeridoo.

Country rockers The Cadillac Three are yet another newcomer, adding a touch of Nashville honky-tonk vibrancy to the cascade of rock anthems.

Arguably the easiest listening of the weekend (or hardest depending on your tastes) will come in the form of vocal harmonists The Lounge Kittens whose twist on rock and metal classic has earned them opening spots for Limp Bizkit and Steel Panther among others.

These incredible acts will join a pantheon of rock and metal gods at Download, including headliners Slipknot, Muse and Kiss, main support Judas Priest, Faith No More and Mötley Crüe, and such other musical giants as Marilyn Manson, Slash, Enter Shikari, Black Stone Cherry and A Day To Remember.

Download 2015

Greetings, well, Download 2015 is almost upon us… and as the bill posters starts to fill up, we thought it would be a good idea to take a look at some of the bands playing, but more importantly, give our opinion of the ones to watch over the weekend. Sometimes, when looking at the bill, it can be a little daunting, with people tending to stick with the main stage acts, but there’s so much to discover if you’re willing to look a little deeper! So here’s a quick preview of the ones to watch.

King 810

Providing these guys make it to the UK and don’t get stopped at the airport, like they did last year, there’s more to these guys than meets the eye. That said, they did manage to enter the country for Download Freezes tour, which took place at the tail end of 2014, so visas and passports must all be in order by now. With that minor detail out the way, they were also asked back here to support the mighty Slipknot in January, which is a real honour, as those guys don’t ask just anyone to support them! Don’t expect all out hell with these guys, like I said, they are more than just a metal band, if you listen closely to their lyrics, I’d almost go as far as to say they are modern day poets! These guys are for the deep thinkers and heavy drinkers. Catch these guys on the 3rd stage on the Sunday.

King 810

Black Star Riders

From the dying embers of Thin Lizzy, original founding member Mr. Scott Gorham and the rest of the current members that made up the band at the time, called it a day and rebranded as Black Star Riders. Doing this enabled them to move forward with writing new material and why not, with so much talent in this band, writing and performing music is what they do best. Since seeing these guys perform for the first time as the new band at the Marshall Amps theatre, I’ve been hooked. They successfully performed at DL13 as a late entry, on the main stage, to a packed out crowd who couldn’t help but sing along to some of the Thin Lizzy classics they have in their set, as well as to the new material. Having recently released their 2nd album, titled “The Killer Instinct” I’ll be eagerly watching these guys on the day. They play the Encore stage on the Saturday.

Black Star Riders


Another bunch of Swedish rocker’s here who I’ve yet to catch play live, but our review of their latest album “Tear Down the Walls” was a firm favourite with our reviewer. These guys are more your traditional rock and roll, such as Thin Lizzy and Alice Cooper, having supported both these acts, I’m very much looking forward to seeing these guys perform on the large stage. You can catch these guys on the Encore stage on the Friday.


I’ve been following this band with keen interest for years now. Having seen one of the best live shows of my life at a Clutch gig, which incidentally was also on one of the hottest days of that year, you can only imagine the carnage. This band are hard to categories as their music is so diverse but if you make time to go through their back catalogue which spans over 20 years on 8 albums, you’ll hear what I mean. You get Punk, Rock, southern rock, metal, but one thing that runs through them all, are catchy tunes, with great lyrics and heavy riffs! I was both surprised and elated when they got announced to play this year and I’m predicting one of the best sets of the weekend from these guys! Catch them when they play the main stage of Friday.


Marilyn Mason

Having seen MM twice now, the first time was fantastic, the second not so much. On each of his last three albums, I’ve managed to find one or two stand out tracks that are worth their salt, however, this year he has come back with a bang, thanks to the release of his new album “The Pale Emperor”. The media have gone nuts for this latest offering, which I’m sure has helped to secure his slot at this years festival. With this new, amazing album, which we’re loving at the moment and his impressive back catalogue, I’ll be at the barriers for this performance to see if he really is back on form, which we hope to be the case as he’s such a great act! MM plays the Encore stage headliner for the Saturday.

Parkway Drive

In my opinion, these guys are one of the best metal/hardcore bands around, who are hugely under rated. I’m yet to see these guys play live so I’m relishing the opportunity to see these guys play the main stage on Saturday.

Evil Scarecrow

If you’ve been to some of the smaller, independent metal festivals this country have to offer, you’ve no doubt come across this band in the past. By far, one of the hardest working, liveliest, loveliest, metal parody bands around and they ain’t too far away either, as they are based in and around Nottinghamshire. After their main stage appearance at Bloodstock last year, which can only be described as a triumph, they have written themselves into the history books of folk law with that show, as they had a larger crowd than Megadeth, who played the same stage on the same day! If you’re looking for a good time, with plenty of crowd participation, I’d strongly recommend this band, we love them. You can find these guys playing the third stage on the Saturday.

Dr Rabid Hell - Evil Scarecrow

Five Finger Death Punch

After an epic performance at DL13, it’s no surprise these guys have been called back to perform for Download again. These guys have steadily increased in popularity since they burst onto the scene back in 2005 and if you like your heavy metal full of drama, these guys won’t fail to disappoint. Last time, they invited a load of kids up on stage with them, which almost ended with Ivan punching a steward for being unkind to one of the kids! I’m predicting 5FDP will also produce one of the best sets of the weekend also, they play after Clutch on the Main stage on Friday.


These Swedish riff machines are a cross between the ever popular “Mastodon and “Planet of Zeus”. We caught this band recently when they supported Monster Magnet. If you’re looking for high energy, pure riff fueled rock and roll, do not miss these guys, who play the 4th stage on the Friday.


Lamb of God

Probably one of the heaviest bands on the bill this year, I for one cannot wait to see these guys play, having missed their headline performance at Bloodstock a few years ago. I’m pretty sure every metal head has heard of these guys. If you keep up with current events in the news, you may even be aware of the turmoil that surrounded the band a few years ago, when Randy Blythe had to go to court regarding the death of a fan, at one of their shows, in Europe. With all that nonsense behind them, the band are moving forward, playing festivals and supporting acts like Slipknot this summer – do not miss these guys if you like it raw to the bone! They play the Encore stage on the Sunday.


These guys have been a real talking point for this years festival, with many die hard Downloaders being disappointed with the fact they are headlining. The same happened when Linkin Park got announced to headline last year and look what happened there! The fact is, Muse are an amazing live act, with a visual live show that’s sure to leave doubters reaching for the lasers. The band are currently in the middle of recording a new album and I for one can’t wait for its release as I’ve loved the band since I discovered them back at university, many many years ago now. As we were one of the first to suggest Muse headline this years festival (we were also one of the first to suggest LP play last year) I will defend Downloads decision to put them on as a headliner. I know their set will be heavy, to please some of the faithful and I’m so excited to see these guys play, a little wee has come out just thinking about their set!

I hope this has been of some use, we may do a follow up, once ALL the bands have officially been announced, as there are still many more yet to come! It won’t be long though, eeek, its just over four months away, I CANNOT WAIT!

Words and Photography by Jay Hawkins (JJ Photography UK)