Behemoth – Friday, Ronnie James Dio Stage
Everyone likes Behemoth. From their earliest black metal work on Grom to their more recent death metal outings, the Polish maestros are just good at whatever they turn their hands to. Add this undeniable musical ability to frontman Nergal’s recent battle with and subsequent defeat of leukaemia and Behemoth have earned a place in the collective heart of the global metal scene. A place that is unquestionably deserved, and which Behemoth will once again prove they have well and truly earned when they tear Bloodstock a new one on the Friday night.
Behemoth’s Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/behemoth
Grand Magus – Friday, Ronnie James Dio Stage
Grand Magus have moved so far from their doom roots that they’re almost a power metal band now, but such a change is hardly for the worse. Riding high on the classic rock infused new album The Hunt (reviewed here), the Swedish power trio are set to descend on the soft green vales of Bloodstock in a storm of ice and northern majesty. Bringing their trademark flair for the epic to their more traditionally chunky riffage, these Swedish slayers will appeal to fans of both the modern and the retro.
Grand Magus’ Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/grandmagusofficial
Anaal Nathrakh – Sunday, Sophie Lancaster Stage
Home-grown extremity from the very birthplace of metal itself, brummies Anaal Nathrakh have long been in the business of eminently listenable chaos, and the quality of both their recorded output and their live performances doesn’t show signs of diminishing any time soon. The dark, claustrophobic heat of the Sophie Lancaster stage is the perfect environment for Nathrakh’s unique blend of vicious blackened grind. The enclosed stage will focus their blend of auditory terrorism and lend Dave Hunt’s incensed rantings an air of the truly terrifying.
Anaal Nathrakh’s Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/Anaalnathrakhofficial
Dimmu Borgir – Sunday, Ronnie James Dio Stage
Dimmu Borgir have made some monumental achievements, in their time rising from unknown black metal band to one of the biggest names in modern metal. Most symphonic metal has simplistic drums and guitars, being viewed as tame by the majority of the extreme metal crowd. At the heart of Dimmu’s appeal lies their innate talent for combining truly symphonic arrangement with flourishes from their extreme roots; epic though their music might be, it isn’t short on blastbeats, rolling double kicks and abrasive riffage. One doesn’t become as successful as Dimmu Borgir without having exceptional live chops as well, as they will no doubt prove when they take the stage on Sunday.
Dimmu Borgir’s Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/dimmuborgir
Mayhem – Saturday, Ronnie James Dio Stage
Wow. Talk about living legends. If you know anything about black metal at all you don’t need us to tell you about Mayhem, but for the uninitiated, without them, black metal as we know it today wouldn’t exist. Simple. Not only did their opus magnus De Mysteriis Dom Sathanas define the standard of black metal musicianship for years with its cold, saturated guitars, relentless drums and austere production, but Mayhem themselves were at the centre of the controversy that rocked Norway in the ‘90s and taught the world to fear all things grim and frostbitten. It isn’t every day you get to see a band who helped invented their genre, and you’d have to be a fool to miss out on the privilege of seeing them at Bloodstock.
Mayhem’s Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/pages/MAYHEM/24247737517