REVIEW: Download Festival 2014 – Saturday


The second day of Download Festival is upon us, and we’re already wishing it would slow down as we’re still trying to recover from the musical madness that dominated the stage only twelve hours ago. But we’ve all had a little bit too much cider since then so what better hangover cure than the bands listed below.

Check out our round up review below of what Saturday at Download Festival 2014 had to offer.


Artist: Bowling For Soup bowling-for-soup-20131

Stage: Main Stage

Time: 3:00 – 3:45

Rating: ★★★★☆

Ah yes, our favourite lovable four piece is back at Download. This time on main stage. Before they’ve even set foot on stage, the giant inflatable sheep (which is later slayed by a knight. I don’t know either) already gives the crowd a taste of what to expect; fun, fun and the occasional fat joke.

Having released their twelfth album last year Lunch. Drunk. Love the band have the opportunity to hit us with a load of new material for the first time in the UK. But. They don’t. And to tell you the truth, we don’t really mind.

High School Never Ends, Ohio (Come Back To Texas), Punk 101 and Girl All The Bad Guys Want, have always and will always go down well at festivals, especially the middle of the afternoon at Download. It’s refreshing to go for it in a mad sing along with people who have a sense of humour, they’re rapidly becoming a rare breed. Everybody is fifteen again and everybody loves it. Nostalgia never gets old.

Whether you know all the songs word for word, pun by pun or just that one about the high school, Bowling For Soup reel in the audience hook, line and sinker. The banter between the band is infectious; you arrive not knowing who they are and leaving feeling like they’re your best mates. If only.


1015089598newsArtist: VAMPS 

Stage: Pepsi Max Stage

Time: 6:05 – 6.35

Rating: ★★★★

There’s always one set at Download that is so outstanding and surreal that not much else will top it. This was that set. Complete with vampire teeth and outfits reminiscent of The Lost Boys, VAMPS arrive onstage to be faced with a heaving Pepsi Max tent, and proceed to slaughter us mercilessly with their intoxicating brand of electro-rock.

Vocalist Hyde stays true to the vampire concept, repeatedly asking the audience “who will I eat?” (garnering rapturous applause and hand-raising from the female audience members) and telling us he’s “so hungry”. We’re pretty certain no one in the crowd would object to being on the menu. His flawless Ville Valo-esque vocals keep all eyes (and ears, obviously) on him.

Frenzied strobes add to the seething guitars, along with elements of Pendulum and glam rock shine through the dry ice. Offerings such as Hunting and Devil Side from latest album Sex Blood Rock ‘n’ Roll are met with screams of adoration and a crowd truly hungry for concept-heavy rock; something which seemed to die out (unfairly) in the music scene post- The Black Parade. It’s a jaunt through cleverly-woven guitar hooks and 80s rock throwbacks, and it’s scarily good fun.

Finishing the set with title track Sex Blood Rock ‘n’ Roll, the sound cuts off halfway through the performance; cue deafening boos and a dejected VAMPS having to unceremoniously leave the stage. Unfair perhaps, but it didn’t dampen their spirits, as they later tweeted “at the end of the day, I felt like it didn’t really matter. I really appreciate all the fans and our staff for giving such a great opportunity. Thanks, Cheers!!”. If their display of humility, and their fantastic performance is anything to go by, the Main Stage will be calling their name next year.


Artist: Fall Out Boy DLFOB

Stage: Main Stage

Time: 7:10 – 8:20

Rating: ★★★★☆



The Save Rock and Roll Tour has moved it’s way across the states, and after their recent journey through the UK, has landed here with us at Donnington. Opening their support performance with the opening track off their latest album was a sure fire way to get all fans, both new and old, jumping on their feet. And it worked. The blazing heat was not enough to stop teenagers galore from cramming themselves to the front, but with the set FOB planned for us, who could blame them.

Yet having the word ‘pop’ slipped into your genre at some point over your career normally doesn’t go down so well at a heavy metal festival. Yet somehow, FOB proved they are more than just another pop punk band (really, we’ve had enough, make it stop) as they indulge fans with their older, heavier songs. Oh and Pete screams a bit.

Sticking to their roots, FOB throw in some old school faves including I Slept With Someone In Fall out Boy and All I Got Was This Stupid Song Written About Me (and breathe) and A Little Less Sixteen Candles And A Little More ‘Touch Me’

However it ain’t just the golden oldies FOB are interested in performing. Songs off their latest record, including Alone Together, Death Valley and Young Volcanoes all received a pretty fierce reception. But it’s the older songs that really separate the men from the boys, the women from the girls and the pop from the punk as fans that know the words fiercely sing their lyrics with pride, and rightly so.

And for gods sakes it would just be downright rude to not pay tribute to the late and great MJ with their cover of Beat It.

Stump provides little interaction with his fans other than through his performance. Which is all we need really. Ending on Saturday (har har har) FOB managed to cover all grounds of their era, satisfying all fans whilst performing their highest rank at Download Festival to date, is pretty good going we reckon.

Artist: Linkin Park


Stage: Main Stage

Time: 9:05 – 10:50

Rating: ★★★★☆



Saturday’s headliners are of course, nu-metal heroes Linkin Park. There has been an ongoing round of Chinese whispers amongst the Downloaders that Linkin Park were due to play their Hybrid Theory album at Download for quite some time now. Alas that time has come. Andy Copping, we thank you.

Having had the main stage warmed up by Fall Out Boy, the crowds have flocked in their masses towards main stage like a moth to a flame, and Linkin Park do not fail to set us alight. Their energy bounces across the thousands who are straining to see the six piece. A short documentary is played across the screens, captioning why Linkin Park had chosen to honour this particular album. Anticipation is high at this point. We know what’s coming, they know what’s coming and the weather still has no idea what’s going on. As Papercut slices into the set the crowd let out a deafening roar of satisfaction and energy levels soar.

Shinoda effortlessly bounces across the stage sporting a red mohawk wig in honour of Chester’s haircut at the albums time of release.

Song after song, no introduction is needed as the crowd faithfully scream the lyrics back in unison.

And this is only the first half. The second half is a mish mash of past and present hits including Numb, New Divide and ending on Bleed It Out. We are bled out, to our very pores as Linkin Park have sucked all our energy and feeling from the depth of our souls and left us to bleed to dry.

There were no fireworks, no pyrotechnics, and the stage show was very humble. But as Chester’s vocals pierce the night air, and guitar riffs flood across Donnington, no fire is needed as sparks are already flying amongst the crowds.