Knebworth Park, UK
4th – 6th July, 2014
Review by Anna Dumpe & Ryan Lee Spearman
Photography Michelle Murphy
Note: For coverage of the more rock orientated bands from the festival, go here.
One of the greatest news to shake the world of heavy metal arrived in 2013 when it was announced that everyone’s favorite rock and metal festival Sonisphere is returning to the hallowed grounds of Knebworth after 2 years of silence and is bringing the best acts of rock and heavy metal to the UK.
Alongside festival headliners The Prodigy, Iron Maiden and Metallica, over 100 bands appeared on five stages throughout the weekend of 4th to 6th July, 2014 and we were there to witness it all for ourselves.
From the first performances of Friday to sore heads on Saturday and Sunday, Metal-Rules.com UK team surely enjoyed Sonisphere to the fullest and we’re happy to tell you all about it.
After what seems like a journey way too short to be going from London to a music festival, we have successfully arrived in Knebworth. It’s been two long years since we all gathered here for Sonishpere 2011 to see The Big 4, Biffy Clyro and Slipknot headline what we still like to recall as one of the most epic weekends ever. And it’s safe to say that since then, we’ve all missed Knebworth quite a lot.
Due to early hours and another metal festival with “not big at all” acts playing in London’s Hyde park (British Summer Time Festival with Black Sabbath, Motorhead, Soundgarden, etc) on the same day, Sonisphere Arena doesn’t look too packed at first, yet once it’s time for the first band to hit the Main stage, crowd of a rather impressive size gathers to witness The Defiled kick-start the festival with a striking performance.
While Limp Bizkit were Rollin’ the main stage, The Bohemia stage tent is overflowing with bodies as ANTHRAX(5/5) take the stage to an almighty ovation. What makes their appearance special, apart from the intimate setting, is the fact they are playing Among The Living in its entirety. That’s right, the whole of Among The Living, and nothing else – any thrashers wet dream.
With the album featuring classics like ‘Caught In A Mosh’, ‘Indians’ and ‘I Am The Law’, the live portrayal of this masterpiece more than lives up to its anticipation. Joey Belladonna, although looking like he’s been crafted from an old piece of discarded Play Dough, proves he’s still got it where it counts, and sounds just as good as he did when the album was first released back in 1987. (Ryan)
Among the Living
Caught in a Mosh
A Skeleton in the Closet
A.D.I. / Horror of It All
Imitation of Life
I Am the Law
And soon after Anthrax are done, the green mist descends for ELECTRIC WIZARD, (4/5) as the smoke filled tent isn’t a result of a smoke machine, but something else (yes, it’s exactly what you think it is), which, possibly, is the only way to truly understand and appreciate Electric Wizard.
OK, so perhaps the band showing up late and cutting their set is a real turn off for some, but on the flip side, you are transported to another astral plane, via drone-like rhythms, colossal slow tempo riffs and a Goliath sense of heaviness.
It begs the question though; would a sober mind find this as good? Probably not, to be fair. (Ryan)
The Chosen Few