Download 2006 Blog - Sunday
Photographer: Bob Rose11 June 2006
The Village is a thriving hub of party madness as we all try to extract every last drop of fun from what has just been an amazing festival. Over in the campsites, a small group of virgins are expressing their sexual frustration by throwing aerosol cans into camp fires, vandalising things and generally doing their best to harm Download's future. As the police arrive with riot gear, an ugly blot is formed on what has otherwise been a perfect, trouble-free, good-natured event. The trouble makers fail to get laid and 12 go into custody, as the net widens to catch the rest. If you saw anything that you would like to report, and help stop this happening again next year, you can report do so here.
There's a classic GNR re-union of sorts as Axl summons on special guest star (former GNR legend) Izzy Stradlin - in my opinion the coolest dude there's ever been - to jam on 'Think About You', 'Nightrain' and 'Used to Love Her'. Sebastian Bach also appears to duet on 'My Michelle'. Having his old friends around seems to relax the old diva and the rest of the set sees glimpses of classic Axl, spinning and stomping all over the freshly carpeted stage. Although this performance falls way short of the triumphant resurrection that was needed tonight, he has brought us mayhem, chaos and insanity - everything Download prides itself on. The vast droves of folk flocking away from the arena long before Axl bids Donington a: "Good... Fucken'... Night" are not convinced however, as his mic crashes to the ground with an amplified 'badong' and a piss-soaked legacy in tow.
Doh! Axl Rose has slipped on his arse during 'Sweet Child'. He's quite cross and storms off. The stage is then carpeted (at his demand) to stop it happening again whilst new guitarist Bumblefoot tries to cheer him up with a guitar solo version of 'Don't Cry'. This is turning into car-crash nostalgia at its worst.
'Dang a da dang a da dang' - it's the intro to 'Welcome to the Jungle'. Guns N' Roses are coming on! Seven minutes early! That's never happened before. Rock history is made at Donington.
The Prodigy are blowing the roof off the Snickers Stage and the crowd is stretching for miles outside the tent. Inside, the action is reaching boiling point - particularly amongst a group of mountaineers (apparently) who express their excitement by vaulting up to the top of the tent poles. In a touching display of concern for their fans' health and safety, scary-eyed rapper Maxim delicately implores them to descend, shouting: "Get the f**k down or we'll stop the show!". The crowd dutifully chant his words on repeat until all but one man carefully come back down to earth. Said man appears to be stuck, but magnanimously decides to forsake his own safety to get the show back on the road and leaps 20 feet off. To his great surprise, he doesn't fly, but it's spectaular and no-one is hurt. This Dog does not condone any such activity. Then The Prodge dropped 'Firestarter'...
Four big scary monsters and a she-monster storm into the backstage area... No, it isn't a re-union of the classic GNR line-up, it's the Finish stars of Eurovision - Lordi, lording it up for press photos and interviews. Unfortunately they can't hear the questions through their masks, and the journalists can't hear their answers, so it's quickly wrapped up.
A young maiden is lowered by harness from the rafters of the main stage during Cradle of Filth's set to perform some impressive stunts during their song Nymphetamine. No, the harness is not attached by meathooks through her own skin, but that did happen here last year on the Sunday...
Darth Vader storms into the backstage area flanked by no less than 20 armed Storm Troopers - and the most feared bounty hunter in the galaxy, Boba Fett - who point their laser blasters in the faces of anyone who so much as looks at Darth's helmet. You think I'm joking but look at the photos, punk. It really happened and, Axl, Darth whooped your entrance!
Axl Rose has just arrived at Donington by helicopter, straight from watching the Grand Prix live at Silverstone. This impressive display of A-List behaviour continues as he takes a stroll around the backstage hospitality area flanked by no less than 20 minders who stare menacingly at anyone who so much as looks at Axl's cornrows. We catch him examining a line-up poster intently. Satisfied, presumably, that Slash is definitely not playing today, the circus rolls on...
The backstage area is rocking to the rumour that Charlie from Fightstar may be joining his pals Funeral For A Friend on-stage to duet on their song 'All The Rage', as he has been spotted doing throughout their recent tour...
Soilwork's guitarist has suffered a vascular spasm, which sounds jolly nasty indeed, so the band will not be able to make their Snickers Stage gig today. Devil Driver (who performed yesterday on the Snickers Stage, and whose singer Dez Fafara helped Korn out with their 'issues') are stepping at the eleventh hour in to fill their slot.