June 2022 Donington Park Leicester England

Download Festival is one of the largest music festivals in the world and draws thousands of rock and metal fans to Donington Park every year. This year, which is the first full-scale festival since before the global pandemic, saw headliners Biffy Clyro, Iron Maiden, and KISS topping off three incredible days of music. If you want to get a glimpse of the action, continue reading as we review live Download Festival performances from five music giants.

Biffy Clyro

Scottish rockers Biffy Clyro have headlined Download Festival before, and they never fail to put on an incredible show. However, their 2022 performance saw a rare moment in Biffy history because front man Simon Neil was wearing a shirt – until he wasn’t, and the sweat broke loose. Every song Biffy Clyro plays live comes with pure energy and must take a beating on Neil’s vocal cords. Fortunately, he can always Download Vocodist and keep his beautiful sound on course. If there was ever any doubt in our minds that Biffy was headliner material, it’s been extinguished after they closed the festival.

From the video channel of Paulbayliss93

Iron Maiden

Iron Maiden is part of the Download Festival furniture, and they always manage to pull in an incredible crowd, and 2022 was no different. Aging like fine wine, Iron Maiden first appeared on the bill 34 years ago and have headlined the festival seven times. Impressively, each time they play they only get better, which is an impressive feat considering Bruce Dickinson is now 63 years old. At the beginning of the set, Samurai Eddie made an appearance as the band showcased their recent album Senjutsu, and what followed was just as well choreographed.

From the video channel of Neil Martin


KISS has graced the rock music scene for decades, and passing time clearly isn’t pulling down their energy. Gene Simmons and the painted gang took to the Download Festival headliner spot once again and taught the masses what Rock ‘n’ Roll really means. However, with Gene Simmons wiping off the makeup and retiring, this incredible show will be their last time at Donington. Fortunately, fans in the crowd witnessed a pyrotechnical spectacle that Rammstein would have been proud of and even saw Paul Stanley zip wire across the audience.

From the video channel of Neil Martin

Funeral For a Friend

Welsh emo icons Funeral For a Friend broke everyone’s hearts when they broke up back in 2015. However, they’ve returned with an elevated status for a series of shows, with Download Festival 2022 being their latest. Fans turned up to the tent to sing their hearts into Oblivion but were met with a terribly mixed show that turned Matthew Davies-Kreye’s vocals into an off-pitch nightmare. That being said, with the riffs hitting hard and familiar choruses blaring out, the fans went wild with nostalgia.

From the video channel of Marco Mammoli

Download Festival was missed during the global pandemic, even with the Download Pilot filling the void in 2021. The artists reviewed above only provide a very small snapshot of the weekend, and next year’s festival will be even bigger, with four days of music to celebrate 20 years under the Download brand.

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