In theory, the idea of giving the main stage over to three kids is a recipe for disaster, but on a cold Sunday morning out came Texan trio DV8 and with a combined age of less than 35, the lads do their best to rock a skeptical crowd with thrashy guitars, heavy drums and an infectious mainstream sound. Their 'scream a little, sing a little' vocal stands up well for the whole set and even the few bottles thrown canít put a dampener on things. So what if the amp's taller than the bassist, so what if they canít legally drink for another 5 years or so, their music is impressive they get the applause to show it.
If eyes are set on anything other than the main stage then people are wasting their money. Society 1 are at Download and this is the festival highlight right here. Being suspended from the rafters with eight meat-hooks in your back is one thing but possibly putting on one of the best musical performances of the festival is something else. Of course, Matt Zane was the focus and who could deny him that, but the band are brutal. Riffs are shot, drumskins obliterated, and by the end even the guitars are smashed. Today we are part of a world record, but we're also gifted with an amazing show. AMAZING.
Up next are math metal outfit Mudvayne. This band have survived the nu metal tag and finally dropped the make up gimmick, and on main stage today they shine. Ferocious screams and machine gun guitars are greeted with a roar as the crowd packed around the main stage go mad. By the time the lads have roared through old favourites and new tracks, everybody packed into the pit is left battered and bruised and there isnít a sad face amongst them. Fuck the ďnuĒ, this is metal!
Former kings of nu-metal Papa Roach return after a short break with their teen angst lyrics and generic riffs for this main stage appearance. Unfortunately, the sound isnít fantastic, the vocals rushed and patchy. Times have changed since the band have been away and if Papa Roach are to regain their former glory, Iím afraid theyíll need to change as well.
Pioneers of the new wave of American heavy metal, Killswitch Engage arrive to bring a much-needed dose of heaviness to the main stage. They do this in style with Adam Dís quirky pre-song humour, Justin Foleyís precise drumming and heavy blastbeats and vocalist Howard Jonesí ability to incite the crowd into going crazy. As the circle pits begin to move, Download just got heavy as hell.