Wednesday, May 22, 2024

Download Festival 2024 DLXXI – The Complete Guide To Every Act!

Experience the ultimate rock and metal extravaganza as Liquid Death brings you Download Festival, an unparalleled celebration hailed as the most iconic festival in its genre. The forthcoming edition of this festival is scheduled for 14-16 June 2024, set against the backdrop of Donington Park in Leicestershire, revered as the hallowed grounds of rock and metal.

Download is one of the biggest festivals in Europe and arguably the most iconic alternative festival in the UK boasting career-defining sets from bands that have gone on to dominate the alternative scene and become genre-ascending mega stars. All it takes is one good set. This article contains brief outlines and song recommendations for each band and will contain stage times once announced. Pro-tip: Click ctrl + f and type the band you are after, to go directly to that band.

Book your tickets now: www.downloadfestival.co.uk.

Friday, June 14th 2024

Apex Stage

Queens of the Stone Age

Masterminded by Josh Homme and boasting some of the greatest rock albums of all time, Queens of the Stone Age have been due to headline a stage of this magnitude for a very long time. ‘No One Knows,’ ‘My God is the Sun,’ ‘Go with the Flow,’ ‘Little Sister, the list of classics is seemingly endless. You’re insane if you’re not already getting hyped for that drum intro from ‘Songs for the Dead’. Their set is going to be full of Nicotine, Valium, Marijuana, Ecstasy and alcohol (don’t do drugs). 

Royal Blood

It’s not difficult to figure out why Royal Blood deserve to be this high up on the bill. With their brand of punchy and youthful Inbetweeners rock sound, they’re set to do some serious damage. Expect wall-to-wall madness once ‘Figure it Out’ kicks in. 

Black Stone Cherry

Black Stone Cherry are full of arena rock energy with rock club anthems like ‘Lonely Train’ and ‘Blame It On The Boom Boom’. An absolute must see if you’re a fan of Lynyrd Skynyrd-style southern rock mixed with modern hard rock sensibilities. For those who saw their intimate club tour last year, it’s well worth seeing them in their natural habitat: on a massive stage in front of thousands of people. 

Polyphia

Polyphia are the next big thing in progressive music and boasts the most incredible musicians currently working in the industry. If you’re a guitar player then you’ve likely heard ‘Playing God’ and ‘GOAT’ and promptly sold your guitars. It’ll be interesting to see how Polyphia perform for a wider audience but either way, their set will definitely have some of the best guitar work of the entire weekend. 

The Struts

Hailing from Derbyshire, The Struts are the big homegrown rock band that Download has been waiting for. Full of that in-your-face Northern attitude and 60s garage rock aesthetic, expect a massive rock show for the ages. Check out ‘Pretty Vicious’ (covered by Halsey) and the rowdy ‘Body Talk’

Those Damn Crows

Those Damn Crows are a straight-up rock band. No frills and no fancy genres just big choruses, massive guitar work and bombastic drumming. You may have caught them opening for The Goo Goo Dolls last year but now is your chance to see them on one of the biggest stages in England. Expect many tracks from their brand new modern classic, ‘Inhale/Exhale’

The Blue Stones

The Blue Stones are a more laid back indie rock outfit that focuses on groove but can still bring the heavy when they need to. Just check out ‘Be My Fire’ and ‘One By One’. They might not be the heaviest band on the bill but they still pack a punch when they need to. 

Opus stage

Bad Omens

Bad Omens are on track for total world domination at the moment. Supporting Bring Me the Horizon on their UK tour and boasting one of the most voracious and dedicated fan bases in metalcore as well as dropping ‘VAN,’ a genre-defying masterpiece featuring Poppy. Catch Bad Omens at Download before you’re forced to see them in arenas. It’s only a matter of time before they get there. 

Heilung

Heilung are an experimental folk/industrial band with members from Norway, Denmark and Germany. Their sound is deeply rooted in European culture and stories of Viking mythology. They make use of traditional European instruments and their lyrics come from runic translations from the Iron and Viking Age. Heilung are a must see for anyone with the slightest interest in Norse culture and even European history in general. They truly are a fascinating collection of musicians and one of the most unique acts at this year’s Download. Be sure to check out their 10-minute epic, ‘Krigsgaldr’

Mr Bungle

The younger generation is about to receive a massive culture shock once Mr Bungle takes the stage. Now a supergroup made up of Mike Patton (Faith No More), Scott Ian (Anthrax) and Dave Lombardo (ex-Slayer), Mr Bungle is a genre-defying experiment that’s been dormant for decades. Having just announced a UK tour, Mr Bungle is going to be the “what the hell was that?” set of the year. 

Soft Play

Soft Play are a British two-piece punk outfit inspired by classic punk acts like The Clash, The Ramones and Rancid. They have a great deal of anger towards the state of the modern world, like most people should, and the live show will definitely reflect that as the anarchy unfurls at Download. ‘Mirror Muscles’ is a sludgy banger and you can always check out ‘Punk’s Dead’ if you’re upset about the band changing their name. 

All Them Witches

All Them Witches are a slower and more relaxed breed of blues rock that mixes in elements of folk music and stoner elements. They’re a fantastic band to get lost in sound as a wall of noise (and perhaps a particular smell) hits you square in the face as you vibe to the psychedelic sound of ‘The Marriage of Coyote Woman’. Highly recommended for fans of Queens of the Stone Age and Green Lung.

Scene Queen

Scene Queen is exactly who you think she is; Queen of the Scene. Her brand of quick-witted and inclusive metalcore has made her a massive figure in the metalcore scene. Scene Queen is gearing up to drop a brand new album this year so Download could be the first place in the UK to hear those new tracks, after she’s done touring with PVRIS of course. You can check out our coverage of her Leeds show from last year here.

Halocene

Halocene are largely a cover band but they have a wealth of original songs. You may recognise their collection of Britney Spears songs from various online ads, one of the most popular being ‘Circus’. You can check one of their 22 records which include covers and original songs. ‘Maleficent’ feels like the bridging point between In This Moment and Halsey. 

Hanabie

Hanabie are a metalcore outfit from Kichijōji, Japan. They blend Western metalcore with Eastern sensibilities and Harajuku fashion aesthetics. They are another instance of music transcending language and creating something virtually everyone can appreciate in some capacity. Hanabie are recommended for the anime crowd but there’s so much to appreciate about their sound. Check out their crushing (but cute) anthem ‘We Love Sweets’. 

Avalanche Stage hosted by Kerrang Radio

Busted

Easily the most controversial addition to Download 2024, Busted may have been a band for rock kids when they first showed up but all those kids have grown up now. Expect to hear millennial mega-hits like ‘Crashed the Wedding,’ ‘Thunderbirds Are Go’ and ‘What I Go to School For’. Everyone out there saying “why are Busted playing” will be out there screaming their lungs out once ‘Year 3000’ comes on as they sit in their foldable chairs because standing for too long hurts their backs. 

Wheatus

Wheatus are obviously best known for ‘Teenage Dirtbag’ and they’ve had a fantastic career because of it but it’s worth noting that they have other songs. They’re a pop punk band with that 2000s radical energy you’d hear on something like Crazy Taxi. Get hyped for tracks like ‘Punk Ass Bitch’ and you can even experience ‘Leroy’ with the dirtiest shoes you’ve ever seen. 

Bayside

Bayside are now a legacy act in the emo scene but they still pack a punch live. Their music has a somewhat metal edge with harmonised guitars and gallops on tracks like ‘Devotion and Desire’ but the emo sound is absolutely impossible to miss. You can check out their brand new album There Are Worse Things Than Being Alive right now and get some prep done for Download. 

Vukovi

Scottish two-piece rockers Vukovi are set to dominate 2024 with a guitar-driven set of powerful pop rock with a metal edge. ‘I Exist’ will get regular rotation on sad playlists and the fact that synth-forward track ‘SLO’ isn’t dominating the radio is a crime. Expect feral energy throughout this set, on stage and in the audience. 

Escape The Fate

Metalcore legends Escape The Fate are set to hit the UK with force as they support the release of their latest album, Out of the Shadows. Expect to hear emo/core anthems like ‘One for the Money,’ ‘This War is Ours’ and a wealth of breakdown-riddled mascara anthems to appeal to your inner emo. 

Dream State

Dream State are a Welsh post-hardcore/metalcore band that make use of massive choruses and vocal flourishes working in tandem with melodic guitar work. While they’re supporting their latest release, Still Dreaming, they’ll still have time for classics like ‘White Lies’ and ‘New Waves’

AViVA

Quirky Australian indie rocker AViVA will be hitting the Avalanche Stage with her unique brand of electronic-inspired personal singer-songwriter stylings. There aren’t many acts that are like her and her music is fairly unique, particularly amongst this lineup, check out ‘Grrrls’ and ‘Rabbit Hole’ and see what we’re talking about. 

Oxymorrrons

Those who saw Corey Taylor last year have already experienced Oxymorrons, everyone else is about to get a violent introduction. With a hyperpop aesthetic complete with bright neon punk imagery and trap beats, they’re set to take on the world and they’re starting with Download. Check out ‘Look Alive’ and ‘Definition’ to get the full experience before seeing them dominate the Avalanche Stage. 

Storm

Storm invoke a genuine sense of teen angst in their music with tracks like ‘After A Lie’ and and ‘House of Cards’. They may be a new band but they’re sure to make waves as they open the Avalanche Stage. Be sure to check them out, despite having the least search engine-friendly name possible, they will become a talking point soon. 

Dogtooth Stage

Biohazard

Expect punishment once Biohazard hits the stop for their headline slot on the Dogtooth Stage. Blurring the lines between thrash and hardcore, Biohazard are legends in the scene and their sets always pack an immense punch. This promises to be a massive well of insanity that runs deep and is fueled by aggression. Be sure to check out their landmark album Urban Discipline before their set. 

HEALTH

HEALTH are best known for their synth-driven industrial rock songs that have been featured on video games like Cyberpunk 2077 and Max Payne 3 but they’re also known for their experimental live shows. It will be interesting to see what their show will look like in the daytime but it will surely be a neon-lit sight to behold. 

Make Them Suffer

Australian metalcore outfit, Make Them Suffer, are a supremely heavy act that combines symphonic elements and grand soundscapes with crushing riffs and abrasive synth work. ‘Doomswitch,’ ‘Erase Me’ and ‘Ghost of Me’ are sure to get the Dogtooth Stage quaking. 

Scowl

Scowl have very limited experience with the UK so far but they’ll get to experience what we have to offer at Download 2024. We may have invented punk but America brought it to new extremes and Scowl are the next chapter in hardcore punk. Scowl are a direct band with ultra-short bangers like ‘Bloodhound’ and ‘Seeds to Sow’ but they still have a lot to offer with their latest EP, Psychic Dance Routine

Speed

Hardcore punk is not for the faint of heart so if you value your teeth, you’ll stay out of Speed’s way once they hit the stage. Beatdown is a famously vicious genre and Speed are definitely one of the more hostile bands on the lineup this year. ‘We See U’ is 68 seconds of pure blinding rage and an invitation to throw down. 

Ithaca

Ithaca are a metalcore band from London and have been in the scene since 2012. Fronted by the acid-tongued Djamila Boden Azzouz, their music is as socially conscious as it is aggressive. Their most recent album, They Fear Us, is a wealth of seething rage and hostility just waiting for a riled-up crowd to experience it and cut loose. 

Zulu

Hardcore has dozens of small intricacies that divide all of its subgenres but it always has one connective: it’s angry as hell. Zulu have roots in powerviolence and they’re sure to cause some chaos with their socially conscious bursts of rage. Zulu’s major talking point is black pride and the black experience throughout the world on tracks like ‘From Tha Gods To Earth’. They are definitely worth checking out if you’re socially conscious or in need of education through music. 

The Callous Daoboys

The Callous Daoboys recently opened for Tesseract in the UK and they went down really well. They’re incredible musicians with a clear understanding of how to use their unbelievable technical proficiency to create songs that actually feel like songs and not just an ostentatious display of twiddly nonsense. ‘Waco Jesus’ and ‘Pushing The Pink Envelope’ are well worth your time if you’re a fan of bands like Sikth. 

Urne

Urne are a London-based band that combines Alice in Chains, Mastodon and Metallica to create a unique sludgy mess of abrasive riffing that is capable of shattering bones. Their latest album ‘A Feast On Sorrow’ made many best of 2023 lists and this is your opportunity to see why. 

Frozemode

A true oddity at Download this year, Frozemode are primarily a rap group with rock elements. At one point, their inclusion would have been seen as a cardinal sin but we’re at a point where genre matters very little as long as the vibes are right. Frozemode will definitely make the most of their set and bring chaos. Look up ‘Vermin’ and try to say they don’t belong at Download. 

Defects

Defects are a brand new metalcore band from London that pack a serious punch in the vocal department and have the riffs to back it. They just dropped their new single and title track from their new album, Modern Error. Modern Error will be released on May 24th 2024, just in time for Download. 

Saturday, June 15th 2014

Apex Stage

Fall Out Boy

They need absolutely no introduction, they are the indisputable kings of pop-leaning emo rock. Fall Out Boy have been rock royalty since they first arrived on the arms race back in the early 2000s and it all culminated in their biggest UK show yet: headlining Download 2024. Expect mega anthems like ‘This Ain’t a Scene, It’s an Arms Race,’ ‘Sugar We’re Going Down,’ ‘Thnks fr th Mmrs’ and arguably the best rock club dancefloor rager ever written, ‘Dance Dance’

The Offspring

For those unfamiliar with Crazy Taxi, be sure to educate yourself about the wild, in-your-face punk attitudes of The Offspring. Despite being in the fourth decade as a band, The Offspring show no signs of being any less radical than they were when they first showed up. ‘Why Don’t You Get a Job,’ ‘Pretty Fly for a White Guy,’ ‘Self Esteem,’ ‘The Kids Aren’t Alright’; the list goes on as Download prepares the stage for the original skater punk badasses. 

Enter Shikari

Arguably one of our finest exports, Enter Shikari are on track to become one of the UK’s biggest arena acts following their sold-out tour earlier this year. If it’s anything like their appearance at Slam Dunk 2023, Enter Shikari are set to have a massive set this year at Download. Only one question remains: do you remember how to clap? 

Babymetal

When they first showed up back in 2012, Babymetal were one of the most divisive metal acts to ever come out of Japan. They blend the heaviest metal imaginable white super cutest J-pop aesthetics to create something wholly unique. Everyone remembers that feeling of total confusion when they first heard ‘Gimme Chocolate’ and they’ve only grown since then. Don’t forget to bring chocolate for the most brutal kawaii set of the whole festival. 

Frank Carter & The Rattlesnakes

Frank Carter & The Rattlesnakes are a British punk band with a progressive edge. With a more lyrical focus than some of their peers, Frank Carter & The Rattlesnakes still bring that wild youthful punk aggression. Check out their brand new record ‘Dark Rainbow’ in preparation. 

The Hunna

Sandwiched between two of the heaviest acts on the Apex Stage, The Hunna are an indie rock act full of rowdy radio ragers and softer emotional clean tracks. Check out ‘Bonfire’ in preparation, it’s sure to go off when it finally kicks in and it’ll come right back down when ‘She’s Casual’ starts. 

Wargasm

Constantly touring the UK and fresh off of massive headline tours and their iconic support slot with Limp Bizkit. If you’re looking for the bridging point between The Prodigy and Limp Bizkit then look no further than Wargasm. Electronic nu-metal might be a newer genre crossover but it’s set to be huge and Wargasm are set to burn it down like ‘Pyro Pyro’.

https://youtu.be/5xuOUuOlRGk

Bambie Thug

Bambie Thug is an Irish solo act that will also be representing Ireland at this year’s Eurovision with their interesting pop banger, ‘Doomsday Blue’. Bambie Thug is closer to an industrial nu-metal act but with a pop edge. Think Billie Eilish meets Coal Chamber and you’ve got something that resembles Bambie Thug. Be sure to check out ‘Tsunami (11:11)’ for a better representation of her sound. 

Opus Stage

Pantera

It’s been 20 years since their last appearance in the UK but the Cowboys from Hell are due to make a glorious return with their star-studded lineup featuring Anthrax drummer Charlie Benante and the legendary Zakk Wylde. Take a shot of Jack Daniels for Dimebag and Vinnie as you throw down to anthems like ‘Walk,’ ‘Domination,’ ‘5 Minutes Alone’ and the gut-wrenching ‘Floods’

While She Sleeps

Hailing from Sheffield, While She Sleeps have been gaining momentum with their energetic brand of hardcore. Supporting their brand new release, Self Hell, they’re sure to make an impression. ‘Silence Speaks’ features Oli Sykes and if that isn’t a glowing recommendation then I don’t know what is. 

Tom Morello

Tom Morello is best known as the guitarist for the groundbreaking socially conscious rap metal band Rage Against The Machine, his work with Audioslave and of course, his acoustic solo project The Nightwatchman. His solo set will be made up all of his iconic masterworks and inimitable effects-laden guitar wizardry. There’s no telling what he’ll play but it will be legendary. 

Slaughter To Prevail

Coming from Russia and fresh off their UK in January, Slaughter To Prevail are the hottest and most controversial deathcore band to come out in recent memory fronted by the ferocious Alex Terrible. Consider this a warning because once the breakdown hits on ‘Demolisher,’ there will be damage. 

Karnivool

Inspired by the likes of Deftones and Tool, Karnivool are the perfect crossover of nu-metal and progressive metal. They blend heavy downtuned extended-range guitars with expansive prog sound escapes and experimental songwriting. ‘Themata’ is a modern prog metal classic and the world is foaming at the mouth for a new record.

Bleed From Within

Bleed From Within are easily the biggest metalcore band from Scotland and Download will be the only place to see them before they support Slipknot on their UK tour in December. ‘I Am Damnation’ and ‘The End of All That We Know’ are designed to be experienced while running in a circle. Listener aggression is advised. 

Asinhell

Asinhell is a death metal side project of Micheal Paulsen (Volbeat) formed in 2023. They’ve only released one album, Impii Hora, but it has been making waves amongst the death metal crowd. Impii Hora has that old school death metal sound you’d expect from the likes of Morbid Angel but with modern production and songwriting sensibilities. 

Heriot

Heriot are a devastating machine of pure unhinged chaos that will wake the Opus stage up faster than a hot cup of coffee to the face. Their debut album Profound Morality is a crushing masterpiece of genre-bending brutality that mixes the most abrasive hardcore around with shoegaze and whatever else they happen to get their hands on during the writing sessions. 

Florence Black

Florence Black are a Welsh 70s throwback rock band in the same vein as Budgie. They’ve been quietly picking up traction through their extensive sold-out UK tours. Check out ‘Look Up’ as well as their latest album Bed of Nails now. RAMzine knew about them before they were cool and you can check out our coverage of their Manchester show supporting Bokassa here

Avalanche Stage hosted by Kerrang Radio

Billy Talent  

Billy Talent are indie punk rock legends and if you don’t know them yet then that’s a massive red flag. Full of twangy guitar tones and the unique vocal stylings of Benjamin Kowalewicz, Billy Talent are here to get you jumping higher than previously thought possible. ‘Fallen Leaves’ and ‘Red Flag’ are mega hits from the alternative hits back in the 2000s and they’re still certified bangers. 

Holding Absence

Holding Absence are the latest alt-rock darlings following the release of their next perfect album, The Noble Art of Self Destruction. Too sad to be pop-punk and too bouncy to be straight-up emo, they exist in a sweet spot designed to win over everybody. Expect future classics like ‘Crooked Melody’ and the heartbreaking empowerment anthem, ‘Angel in the Marble’. You can also check out our coverage from last year here

Silverstein

Emo/post-hardcore legends Silverstein have been grinding for over two decades and have a wealth of classics like ‘Smile In Your Sleep’ and the iconic ‘Smash Into Pieces,’ which was featured on American Idol (seriously). Acts like Silverstein prove that mid-2000s post-hardcore still has a place in modern rock and has the potential to win over a massive new following, desperate to discover what came before them. 

Noahfinnce

Noahfinnce is arguably most well known as a YouTuber but their reputation as a musician is quickly catching up following their support slot on Enter Shikari’s last UK tour. Their newest EP, Growing Up On The Internet, is out now and deals with the intricacies of online culture through a queer lens all without coming off preachy or morally superior like most online discourse has become. Their set is sure to be a warm and inclusive safe space for all, like all music should be. 

RØRY

RØRY is a solo artist that utilises heavy themes including mental health and feminism to create a safe space for discourse and positivity while still creating sweeping choruses and power pop songwriting. RØRY’s latest album, Family Drama, is a heartbreaking venture guaranteed to make you feel something, it may not be something good but it’s still something. 

Charlotte Sands

Punk singer/songwriters are becoming a more common occurrence but when they show up, they’re destined for great things. Charlotte Sands will be bringing her introspective yet melodic and lively brand of pop punk. Charlotte’s latest album Can We Start Over is a brilliant mix of pop and rock designed for massive broad appeal. 

Lowlives

Lowlives are a supergroup made up of members of The Defiled and other alternative superstars. They have an almost goth sound with the classic chorus-drenched guitar tone permeating through their downer anthems. Their newest album Freaking Out drops late May but you can check out the title track and the Type O Negative-inspired ‘Loser’ now. 

Deathybyromy

Deathbyromy continues the trend of rock singer-songwriters leaning towards a more accessible but still challenging sound. Problems feature bright and warm production with dower yet relatable lyrics designed to make you think. 

Hotwax

Hotwax are a post-rock trio that makes some really spacey yet noisy 90s riot grrrl-style rock music that’s sure to wake you up quick. Highly recommended for fans of Sonic Youth and The Go Gos, ‘Treasure’ is sure to make things kick off in a big way. 

Mallavora

Socially conscious and brimming with rage, Mallavora are picking up momentum on TikTok with their new single ‘Wake Up,’ an anthem of social awareness and being mindful of who the real enemy is. Mallavora are highly recommended for those who like their hardcore with an intense focus on social justice. 

Dogtooth Stage

Fear Factory

Boasting one of the tightest rhythm sections in metal and with guitar work as sharp as steel, Fear Factory are one of the most important bands in the Industrial metal scene. ‘Edgecrusher’ and ‘Replica’ will get the entire Dogtooth Stage in the year as they rip through their headline slot. 

Dying Fetus

Dying Fetus don’t have a very nice name but they make up for that by being very good at what they do; crafting insanely heavy and fast death metal. ‘Your Treachery Will Die With You’ is a certified death metal classic full of vicious breakdowns that will inspire a safe environment full of violence and carnage. 

Alpha Wolf

Alpha Wolf are one of the latest bands to mix metalcore with nu-metal in the same vein as I Prevail. Their sound may be harsh but their lyricism and tone have this life-affirming quality. ‘Whenever You’re Ready’ and ‘Sucks 2 Suck’ are brilliant tracks and the latter even features Ice T, which is a glowing endorsement. 

Ne Obliviscaris

Australian progressive metal band, Ne Obliviscaris are famous for their incredibly long and technical songs which make use of a violin as a main lead instrument. They may not play many songs but they’re always impressive, just check out their latest album Exuul. You can check out our coverage of their last show in Manchester here

Dying Wish

Dying Wish are having their time in the sun following their European tour with August Burns Red. Their latest album Symptoms of Survival is a mid-2000s metalcore revival album with modern hardcore elements mixed in. Do not miss their set before they get even bigger because they’re only getting better as they go. 

Gel

Hardcore punk band Gel’s debut album, Only Constant, clocks in at 16 minutes but that short runtime is an absolute firestorm of fury. There aren’t many bands that are as succinct and direct as Gel and that makes them a band worth watching. ‘Honed Blade’ is two minutes of simple but effective rage. Keep an eye out for more Gel in the near future. 

Guilt Trip

Guilt Trip are a Manchester based band that gained success after supporting Malevolence on their UK tour and since then, they’ve become a talking point in the hardcore scene with frantic and hostile bangers like ‘Broken Wings’ and ‘Tearing Your Life Away’. They’re sure to turn some heads at Slam Dunk this year and Download will be no different. Don’t miss it. 

Calva Louise

Calva Louise are a straight-up rock band with some electronica leanings. They may not have some elaborate fancy pants genre name but they do have bangers. ‘Human Becoming’ has a massive arena chorus and a guitar solo to match. A surefire hit early on this year’s Download. 

ALT BLK ERA

ALT BLK ERA deal with representation of the alternative scene with their dark hip-hop sound. There really isn’t much like it in the modern landscape of music. ‘I’m Normally Like This’ gives a “We are the weirdos, mister” vibe and is recommended for only the edgiest of people. 

Knife Bride

We are currently experiencing a renaissance of nu-metal and some of the best bands of the genre are revealing themselves right now. Knife Bride could be the next big thing. ‘Permanent Smile’ is a ripper that is sure to put a smile on everyone’s face once the pit opens. 

Celestial Sanctuary

Celestial Sanctuary play undiluted death metal in the same vein as acts like Obituary and Bolt Thrower. Full of simple yet effective Caveman riffing, Celestial Sanctuary are a killer way to start your Sunday. ‘Rid the Gormless’ and ‘Soul Diminished’ are sludgy and grotesque death metal anthems for only the most extreme people.

Sunday, June 16th 2024

Apex Stage

Avenged Sevenfold

Avenged Sevenfold are certain to take up the mantle once Metallica retires. A7X are masters of creating radio-friendly radio metal bangers like ‘Almost Easy’ and ‘Bat Country’ but they also have the ability to craft oddball prog anthems as evidenced by their latest album, Life Is But a Dream. A7X have headline Download before with various issues while performing, but they’re dead set on taking over the Apex Stage in 2024.

Limp Bizkit

Limp Bizkit are rap metal gods with a goofball sense of humour and whacky riffs from the inimitable Wes Borland and godly stage presence of the ultimate hype man, Fred Durst. You’ll get so much ‘Nookie’ you’ll want to ‘Break Stuff’ (I’m so sorry you had to read that). 

Sum 41

Sum 41 have announced their retirement which makes Download 2024 their final UK festival appearance. Having given us 30 years of kickass pop punk, it’s only fair they get a proper send-off before their farewell tour returns to the UK (no dates announced yet but we have hope). Eternal bangers like ‘In Too Deep,’ ‘Fat Lip’ and of course, ‘Still Waiting’ are going to be experiences that you may not get to experience for long. 

Bowling For Soup

“Perpetual adolescence” tends to have a negative connotation to it but when Bowling For Soup are around, it’s the most desirable trait you can have. Frontman Jarret Reddick is king of vulgar nonsense and it helps to embrace your inner 14 year old. You can check out our coverage of their co-headline show with Less Than Jake in Manchester earlier this year here

Kerry King

Backed by an all-star cast of thrash legends including Phil Demel and long-time Slayer drummer Paul Bostaph, Slayer guitarist Kerry King makes his UK solo debut just in time for his debut album, From Hell I Rise which drops in May. It’s still a mystery what he’ll play but you can be certain that it’ll be pure thrash. You can stream his new singles ‘Idle Hands’ and ‘Residue’ right now.

Creeper

Creeper are one of our very own goth rock legends from Southampton. Having developed a massive following over the years as well as supporting My Chemical Romance on their last UK dates, they’re sure to go down a treat. Their last album Sanguivore is full of hard rock eyeliner anthems like ‘Lovers Led Astray’ and ‘Cry To Heaven’ that are definitely worth checking out. 

Code Orange

Code Orange have leant into a 90s alternative sound similar to the likes of Alice in Chains and Smashing Pumpkins recently. Their latest album Below is a critical darling and has caught the attention of many music snobs from all over the world. But don’t let that fool you, they still have a lot to prove and they’re still deadly live. Take cover when ‘Forever’ starts. 

Lord Of The Lost

Lord Of The Lost have gone from strength to strength since they represented Germany at Eurovision 2023. They’re currently enjoying worldwide fame and success and their return to the UK is more than welcome. Leaning on industrial metal influences and flaunting a very theatrical image, Lord Of The Lost are a great pick to open the Apex Stage on the final day of Download 2024.

Opus Stage

Machine Head

Machine Head are no stranger to Download and their anthemic thrash anthems and raucous energy fit the stage perfectly. Boasting some of the most unhinged mosh pits thrash can offer, they’re sure to let freedom ring with a shotgun blast. Get ready for crushing devastation with legendary tracks like ‘Davidian’ and ‘Halo’ as they close out the Opus stage of Download 2024.

Corey Taylor

Corey Taylor needs no introduction, especially not at Download. His set is sure to get people ready for Slipknot’s UK tour in December, it’s set to feature that same trademark aggression but also a little bit of silly fun you wouldn’t expect. All we can ask is: who lives in a pineapple under the sea? (if you know, you know).

Electric Callboy

Evolving from a more serious metalcore outfit, Electric Callboy have transformed into a goofy band that still makes ultra-heavy music but also creates whacky fun rippers like ‘Hypa Hypa’ and ‘We Got the Moves’. Electric Callboy are the middle ground between I Prevail and Weird Al Yankovic. Bring your gym gear, bro. 

Thy Art is Murder

Following the release of their latest album, Godlike, Thy Art is Murder have been touring Europe and drawing massive crowds with their brand of punishing deathcore. ‘Reign Of Darkness’ is going to be a cataclysmic event. You can check out our coverage of their Manchester show last year too here.

Zebrahead

Rap/punk/ska rockers Zebrahead are in a new era with new singer Adrian Estrella. Formed in 1996 and still punk rocking like the good old days. Anthem, ‘Falling Apart’ and ‘Rescuing Me’ are all classics and there’s every chance they’re on the setlist this year. 

Elvana

Elvana sounds like a joke from the initial description; they’re a very talented Nirvana tribute act but their frontman is Elvis. If that doesn’t sound amazing then I don’t know how else to convince you. Everything you’re picturing in your mind is exactly how it plays out on stage and it’s absolutely brilliant. 

Royal Republic 

Swedish outfit Royal Republic will be breaking up the glut of heavy metal with some good old-fashioned rock and roll. Not quite heavy enough to be metal but too heavy to be pop rock, Royal Republic are among the best of the 70s throwback bands. Full of punchy hooks on tracks like ‘Rata Tata,’ Royal Republic are perfect for the Clutch fans out there. 

311

Alternative rock band 311 are chilled with their reggae/funk-inspired rock stylings. Perfect for the stoner crowd (not there will be any of that this year). Look up the spacey mellow twang of ‘Amber’ and the airy vastness of ‘Love Song’ to get the full experience of 311.

Alien Weaponry

Many will remember Alien Weaponry’s legendary slots opening for Gojira last year. There were intense pits and rabid audiences throughout every single date, you can check out our coverage here. Be sure to check out ‘Kai Tangata’ from their classic album Tu. Their love and respect for Maori culture mixed in with some of the heaviest riffing around makes Alien Weaponry a wholly unique and transformative experience. Do not miss their set. 

Kelsy Karter & The Heroines

Kelsy Karter & The Heroines are part of the 90s riot grrrl revival but with a glam rock twist full of huge arena rock choruses. ‘Love Goes On’ has that 80s glam tone and ‘Devil On My Shoulder’ has a modern pop flavour. It’s sure to win over a lot of new fans once the Opus Stage opens.

Avalanche Stage hosted by Kerrang Radio 

The Used

The Used released their latest album, Toxic Positivity, last year and they’ll have plenty of shiny new emo tracks for all to enjoy as well as older classics. ‘The Taste of Ink’ and ‘Buried Myself Alive’ are tracks that have that melancholy edge to them but enough energy to get you moshing through the tears. 

Counterparts

Counterparts are modern metalcore band that lean more towards hardcore. They favour the anthemic expansive sound without sacrificing the heaviness. ‘Whispers Of Your Death’ and ‘Wavering Vow’ are fantastic representations of what they do best: blending melody with punishing riffs and intensity. 

Hoobastank

Hoobastank are a band that makes thoughtful rock that has this overt sonic sadness that permeates through their music. Hoobastank’s music is as sad as their name is silly. Be ready for their early 2000s mega-hit, ‘The Reason’

Atreyu

Atreyu are mid-2000s metalcore royalty with an emo edge. Their harsh and abrasive sound blends perfectly with their  heartfelt lyrics and intense guitar work. ‘Ex’s & Oh’s’ is an underrated classic that has been unfairly forgotten and it’s time for Atreyu to issue a reminder. 

Of Mice and Men

Of Mice and Men seem desperate to come back to the UK considering their massive UK tour only ended a few months ago. While that tour was full of smaller venues, it’s time they took to a massive mega stage with a gigantic audience. It’s your chance to experience nu-metal/core classics like ‘Second and Sebring’ and classics from their iconic album, Restoring Force; as well as the new classics such as ‘Obsolete’ and ‘Warpaint’

Tigercub

Tigercub are a 70s rock throwback act with a sludgy production from Brighton. They prominently feature growling distortion-fueled groovy basslines working in tandem with old school overdrive guitar tones. The title track from their latest album, The Perfume of Decay, is worth your time if you like a bit of treacle in your rock. 

Royal & The Serpent 

Royal & The Serpent are an indie rock solo act with pop sensibilities. Their music has that sugary pop sound but still has complex lyricism that many are sure to find relatable and engaging. ‘Overwhelmed’ is sure to catch the attention of many in the audience with its relatability and frank honesty about anxiety. 

Pinkshift

Pinkshift are a pop-rock band from Baltimore with far too much energy, hopefully they’ll get to share some of it with a massive crowd at Download. ‘I’m Gonna Tell My Therapist on You’ is a wild raucous track that is sure to go down well as everyone nurses their Sunday morning hangover. 

Cemetery Sun

Cemetery Sun have a distinctly indie sound but they mix in hip-hop elements to make a fairly unique sound amongst their emo-inspired peers. You can check out our coverage of their set supporting Black Veil Brides in 2023 here.

Delilah Bon

Delilah Bon’s approach to nu-metal features feminist lyricism and a general intolerance to the poor treatment of woman at the hands of men. ‘Dead Men Don’t Rape’ will definitely start a dialogue. You can also check out our coverage of her set opening for Scene Queen in Leeds here

Dogtooth Stage

The Black Dahlia Murder

The Black Dahlia Murder’s continued existence is a tribute to the tragically departed legend that is Trevor Strnad. His influence as a vocalist will never be forgotten just as the music he helped create will. The Black Dahlia Murder will close the Dogtooth stage for this year with their ultra-technical melodic death metal stylings. ‘What a Horrible Night to Have a Curse’ is a melodeath masterpiece and a fitting way to end the weekend. 

Erra

Erra have just released their brand new album, Cure, to widespread critical acclaim. Erra are a progressive metal band that leans towards Djent, a 100% real and legitimate genre. Armed with 8 strings and carrying on the traditions of bands like Periphery and Born of Osiris, Erra will have many new fans by the end of their set. 

Fit For a King

Fit For a King are an amazing blend of heaviness and melody. Their hooks are so infectious and the guitar work really shines through in a genre that prefers simplicity. ‘When Everything Means Nothing’ is an emotional roller-coaster designed to have you moshing in tears. 

Shadow of Intent

Shadow of Intent are growing at a terrifying rate and it won’t be long before they start filling the same size venues as Lorna Shore. ‘The Heretic Prevails’ is a bizarre deathcore ripper that has a prominent piano lead and symphonic elements but still has that same blunt force trauma-inducing heaviness we know and love. 

Imminence

Swedish metalcore outfit Imminence are a fairly progressive band without leaning too far into the genre. There’s a lot of synth work that fills out their sound and makes them sound massive. ‘Chasing Shadows’ showcases the band at their most eclectic with complex lead guitar lines and colossal drums mixed with epic synths. 

Brand of Sacrifice

Forged in Canada and creating pure devastation, Brand of Sacrifice are one of the best deathcore bands around at the moment and they’re biding their time before they get the credit they deserve. ‘Exodus’ and ‘Lifeblood’ are 100% worth adding to your deathcore playlist, ‘Lifeblood’ even has a “blegh”. 

Crystal Lake

Crystal Lake are one of the most important metalcore bands to come out of Japan, their approach to modern metalcore is as unique as it is deadly. Their new single ‘Dystopia’ is a classic in the making and their older material like ‘Apollo’ will cause a ruckus this year. 

MISSIO

MISSIO are a double that creates these bleak electronic tracks in the same vein as Twenyonepilots. It’s sure to appeal to your inner teenage angst regardless of your age. ‘Twisted’ is a teen angst-riddled bop and many will know ‘Sing To Me’ from the Death Stranding soundtrack. 

Underside

Underside’s sound is inspired by classic rock and thrash metal and it doesn’t take long to figure that out. They make use of clean vocals with that trademark thrash snarl and play at great speeds. ‘Still An Eye On You’ invokes Kill Em All-era Metallica and ‘War Of All Against All’ is about as close you can get to sounding like Slayer nowadays. 

Pest Control

Leeds crossover newcomers, Pest Control, are set to infest Download with breakneck micro thrash songs. They may have a short set but they’ll be able to fit a lot in it. Their newest album Don’t Test The Pest is a killer slice of party thrash with a hint of hardcore thrown in. You can check out our coverage of their set supporting Obituary in Manchester here

Harper

Harper is most famous for her appearance on America’s Got Talent singing ‘Holy Roller’ by Spiritbox when she was 9. She’s grown up since then (she’s now 12) and she’s got her own music. ‘I Hope You Choke’ has some killer production and her vocals have come a long way since that ATG appearance. 

Until I Wake

Until I Wake are opening the final day of Download on the Dogtooth Stage and it’s sure to be a violent wakeup call. ‘Octane’ has huge vocals and synth to match the punishing guitar work and devastating drums. 

Keep checking back as we update this article with stage times once they’re announced. 
Book your tickets now: www.downloadfestival.co.uk.

Lamestream Lydia
Lamestream Lydia
Self-proclaimed journalist, Progressive rock enthusiast and the most American sounding person you're ever likely to meet in the North of England

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