Download 2005 - an overview
12 June 2005
As well as the live performances, everything about Download 2005 rocked. Slick organisation, unparalleled atmosphere, interactive innovation... quite simply, the perfect rock festival!
What was so great about Download 2005?
Please click on a photo to enlarge it...
Let's start with the organisation. After problems with queues and security last year, the festival were determined to get things right this time. Hats off to them - the result was possibly the most slick, user-friendly and well-managed event that VF has had the pleasure to experience - a view supported by many of the artists and fans we spoke to. Queues were minimal, security were generally pleasant and helpful (seriously!) and the schedule ran like clockwork, apart from one cancelled band (Hatebreed) and a delayed flight (Nighwish) - neither of which were under the festival's control.
Even greater respect must go to the fans who teamed up to create and sustain a truly euphoric atmosphere from the moment the campsites opened. In the face of unseasonally cold nocturnal temperatures, the love was positively brimming at Download and the celebratory mood infectious throughout. Given metal's fiercely tribal reputation, we were impressed (and relieved) that this manifested for the most part in good natured fun - especially during our 5-a-side football match!
We were also glad to see (and contribute to) the festival living up to its name by laying on a rich selection of interactive wizardry. Down-time between bands on the main stage was made highly enjoyable, as fans texted amusing messages, jokes and photos (topless girlfriends were a winner!) to the big screens. You could even take a photo on your phone and have it sent as a glossy postcard from the fest - oh the shock potential! We at VF got stuck in too, organising a 5-a-side football pitch for the campsite and running a tournament (which we politely lost!) for members of the online community. We also had a 'VJ' crew, mixing our footage from around the festival with that of the bands on-stage, on the big screen in the Napster tent.
All in all, we had a damn good time. Can't wait 'till next year!
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