For some unexplained reason, people don’t seem to be familiar with Bloodstock. While they can name Wacken, Downloads and Rock-am-Ring, they are oblivious to the fact that the UK has this massive and excellent festival.
Started in 2001 with Donnington’s Monsters of Rock in mind, Bloodstock came to life as an indoors festival… but soon became much more.
Bloodstock Open Air (B-O-A) is the UK’s biggest independent METAL festival. Held at Walton on Trent in Derbyshire, B-O-A has won the hearts and minds of fans of heavy ROCK AND METAL by consistently showcasing the strongest metal line up on UK soil (which explains why you’ll encounter no less than 10,000 screaming metalheads!)
The festival boasts over 100 international rock and metal acts across four stages, as well as other attractions including:
- International metal market
- Late night metal Karaoke
- Fairground rides
- ‘The Bloodstock Arms’ festival bar serving real ale
- Full weekend camping
- Signing Tent
- … One of the best atmospheres the festival scene has to offer.
Of course, there is more. Its stages have received the likes of Amorphis, Saxon, Blind Guardian, Epica, Kreator and Grave Digger, just to name a few… and this years things are about to get even better. With over 100 bands, from the massive Alice Cooper and Machine Head, which appeal to crowds of all ages and styles, to “niche” bands like Anaal Nathrakh and Alcest… there’s something for everyone.
WHERE and WHEN?
Bloodstock takes place in Catton Hall, Walton-On-Trent, Derbyshire, DE12 8LN, England, from the 9th to the 12th of August.
For travel information (including shuttle buses) make sure to check the official website!
Now this is what everyone is wondering! Well… we simply don’t have enough space to show you the whole line-up because, believe us, it’s truly MASSIVE. Over 100 bands will rock the hell out of the thousands of visitors to this year’s edition of Bloodstock.
So here’s a preview (UPDATE: June 6th):
RONNIE JAMES DIO STAGE
The main stage features some of the most talented musicians you can find, all of whom are sure to appeal to a wide array of audiences. From the fans of classic heavy metal (Alice Cooper, Dio Disciples, Machine Head and Anvil, to name a few) to the lovers of the heaviest styles (Hatebreed, Behemoth, Mayhem, Deicide, Testament and Watain) as well as those who love something “special” (Iced Earth, Grand Magus, Moonsorrow, Freedom Call…) everyone is bound to find something to bang their heads to.
SOPHIE LANCASTER STAGE
In case you’re wondering about the name, Sophie Lancaster was a young girl who was murdered in Lancashire, together with her boyfriend, after being singled out for her alternative clothes. As a way to remember the victim of this cowardly and savage attack, Bloodstock not only named the stage in her honor, but also actively contributes to, and works with the, The Sophie Lancaster Foundation, created by Sophie’s parents, and which aims to raise awareness of the prejudice and violence faced by people from alternative subcultures.
The Stage has been home to some brutal metal acts from all over the world (such as Benediction and Hospital of Death ) and this year won’t be an exception, with bands like Anaal Nathrakh, Alcest, Marionette, Winterfylleth and Crimes of Passion blasting the speakers.
The bands, however, are not all.
The stage (or, more accurately, the tent) is hosted by 4 DJs who keep the metal music going at all times, as well as organize constant entertainment for the metalheads, such as (probably drunken) karaoke and even fancy dress competitions!
Don’t be fooled by the idea that the Sophie Lancaster Stage is a “second class” stage… that couldn’t be further from the truth!
NEW BLOOD STAGE
Formerly known as the “unsigned stage”, New Blood aims to give a platform for lesser known bands to reach new audiences, and it does so by not only giving them a place to play in front of a massive crowd but also, as part of their reciprocal deals with other festivals, giving them the opportunity to play in Wacken (Germany) and Metal Camp (Slovenia).
While some may think that there’s no point in checking these “small” bands, keep this in mind: Every band you like, no matter how big, started as a small act. You might be missing the opportunity to see a new Iron Maiden in the making.
You can get your tickets, VIP and camper passes and much more, check the official website.