Still revelling from the mighty AC/DC set the previous night, I arrived at Download for the Saturday’s shenanigans. Thankfully, a full day of music lay ahead rather than the half measures that were served up on Friday!

Saturday started off in the best possible way with the hard rock quartet Godsized, despite the early slot the crowd in the tent housing the Pepsi Max stage was huge! A powerful, dynamic 40 minute set had the crowd jumping and asking for more! Next up were California metallers Holy Grail, fresh from the ‘Quest for Download’ tour with Rise to Remain. Holy Grail, with their NWOBHM style were quite a contrast to the Hard Rock of Godsized but were greeted much the same from the ever-growing crowd.

With Holy Grail finished it was time for refreshments, pint of cider now in hand I heard the familiar sounds of Atreyu blasting from the Maurice Jones stage. Now, either i’d fallen asleep for an hour whilst queuing for a drink or the stage times had been royally messed up or switched around. According to my trusty list it should have been Flyleaf playing after HELLYEAH… However, Atreyu played a great set including the favourites “Doomsday”, “Ex’s and Oh’s” and “Bleeding Mascara”.

With the stage time mix up there was time to kill before the next band that I had planned to catch, so it a was quick jaunt across to the Ronnie James Dio stage where I managed to catch the end of the Rolo Tomassi set. Rolo Tomassi are an interesting proposition, an Avant Garde sound mixed with metal. Part of me said it shouldn’t work, but it does and very well at that! My Passion, were next to take to the Ronnie James Dio stage. Having heard nothing of theirs before I really didn’t know what to expect, I was pleasantly surprised how good they were. Electronic Goth Metal is the best way I can describe their sound, not to everyone’s taste but I really liked what I heard!

Now, the band I had been waiting to see, Cancer Bats! I caught them last year supporting Billy Talent and have loved them ever since. They bring such energy and passion to the stage, a stormer of a set which had vocalist Liam Cormier waist deep in the crowd for the majority of the time conducting a record attempt for the most High-Fives during a set! The crowd was huge and growing by the minute. The entire set had the crowd bouncing but things went ballistic to the anthemic “Hail Destroyer” and the immense cover of the classic Beastie Boys track “Sabotage”.

I don’t know if it was the beer or the epic performance I had just witnessed but I was feeling the call of nature. This isn’t something that I would normally share but on this occasion I feel it is necessary as I was witness to the annual festival phenomena that is the female patron using the gent’s stand up urinal facilities! All I can say is that she must have been a gymnast to have gotten her leg in that position…

Back to the Maurice Jones stage for the remainder of the day where Lamb Of God were about the rip the face off the crowd! This they did this with ease, especially when they have songs such as “Walk With Me In Hell”, “Now You’ve Got Something To Die For” and “Redneck” in their arsenal! They rounded off their set with the immense “Black Label”.

The word legend is banded about too often and given far too easily but the next band, and in particular their front man Dave Mustaine, deserves legendary status! Megadeth took to the stage with old Rattlehead looking down at us from the ‘Rust In Piece’ back drop! Rumours were rife they Megadeth would be playing ‘Rust in Peace’ in its entirety as they had done on the recent tour. Alas, it wasn’t to be but we were treated to 6 songs from RIP including “Holy Wars…The Punishment Due”, “Hangar 18” and “Rust in Pease… Polaris” along with several monster tracks from their various albums.

Deftones were up next, a huge favourite of mine but a band that I had never seen live before! They didn’t mess about, diving straight into “Rocket Skates” and “Diamond Eyes”! They played most of the new album but interspersed it with classics like “Be Quiet and Drive (Far Away)”, “My Own Summer (Shove it)”, “Passenger” and “Change (In the House of Flies)”. The set was tight and Chino was jumping around the stage and onto his podium like he was a teenager again. They finished the set of with the classic “7 Words” from ‘Adrenaline’… An awesome set, probably the best of the day!

Fresh from their free performance at Hyde Park the previous weekend, Rage Against the Machine closed out the Maurice Jones stage. Yet another band I can now tick off the list of those I had never seen before. All of their hits were there… “Bombtrack”, “Know Your Enemy”, “Bulls on Parade”, “Bullet in the Head”, “Calm Like a Bomb”, “Guerrilla Radio” and “Wake Up”, they also slipped in a cover of The Clash classic “White Riot”. They ended the set with “Freedom” and, of course, the song that brought them this opportunity “Killing in the Name”.

Another awesome day drew to a close, one more to go! Could it be as good as today…

Read what our friends at Cack Blabbath had to say about Download 2010 Saturday.

9/10