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Sonisphere Festival 2014 Preview



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After laying low for a couple of years, Sonisphere is returning to Knebworth in fine style, and to commemorate 40 years of live music at the site. There’s a seriously heavyweight line-up in store; you probably already know about the big guns headliners, The Prodigy, Iron Maiden and Metallica, but here are ten bands we at Crossfire reckon will be among the highlights of the weekend. – Alex Gosman

ANTHRAX – Bohemia Stage, Friday

Anthrax are no strangers to Sonisphere, having played at every UK edition of the festival since its inception in 2009. This year, however, they’re returning with a very tasty carrot; a Friday evening performance of their legendary 1987 ‘Among The Living’ album in its entirety, in the cosy Bohemia tent. Get there early, and get seriously excited!


Sure, you’ll hear no end of great songs at Sonisphere 2014, but who’s gonna provide the ANTICS? Step forward Jackass alumnus Mr Bam Margera, a man with fingers in many pies, most recently his new band Fuckface Unstoppable. Expect some choice covers, ‘Bend My Dick’ (see below), and general onstage stupidness. If you need a piss, fill up your pint glass and send it his way, he will love it. (Z-Ed)

TRC – Jagermeister/Satellite Stages, Friday

Few bands on the Sonisphere bill divide opinion quite like this London hardcore crew, and few bands share their ability to whip a crowd into a maelstrom of flailing limbs. With new album ‘Nation’ under their belts, you may love or hate TRC, but you can’t escape them.

SLAYER – Saturn Stage, Saturday

Can anything stop these guys? The death of guitarist and founding member Jeff Hanneman last year certainly dealt a blow to the Californian thrash legends, but the recent release of vicious new track ‘Implode’ proves that these old dogs still kill it like few others can. Scariest pit of the weekend? Don’t bet against it.

CHAS & DAVE – Saturn Stage, Saturday

Quite possibly the best-ever wild card at a rock/metal festival, and a fine way to ease into Saturday if your head’s still sore from the Prodigy’s brutal beats the night before. Tip: Drop acid before this show for the best results.

STAMPIN’ GROUND – Jagermeister/Satellite Stages, Saturday

Along with fellow British crew Raging Speedhorn (who are also playing), these guys regularly tore local venues apart around the turn of the century, and they’re back to remind us why they were such a force to be reckoned with. 14 years since its release, their third record ‘Carved From Empty Words’ still utterly slays.

MASTODON – Apollo Stage, Sunday

Blessed with the ability to pulverize and mesmerize in equal measure, Mastodon’s riffs are impressive enough on record, but live, they’re like a steamroller to the senses. New album ‘Once More Round The Sun’ is about to drop, and judging from recent single ‘High Road’, it’s gonna sound HUGE.

TRASH TALK – Jagermeister/Satellite Stages, Sunday

Don’t be too surprised if you see folks having to be carried out of the tent during Trash Talk’s set; this LA hardcore quartet attract chaos like blood attracts sharks. Oh, and they play hardcore like it oughta be; fast, furious, raw, and filthy. Get some.

GALLOWS – Bohemia Stage, Sunday

Since Frank Carter’s final festival performance with Gallows at Sonisphere 2011, the band have gained a new vocalist, lost a guitarist, and released a belter of a self-titled record. Armed with brand new track Chains and possibly more from this live show, Gallows will no doubt destroy everything in their sight this weekend.

KROKODIL – Jagermeister/Satellite Stages, Sunday

Something of a Watford supergroup, featuring members of SikTh, Gallows and Cry For Silence (plus Dan Carter of ‘A’/Hexes fame), Krokodil are a must for anyone who likes their metal thunderously heavy and riff-driven. Check out debut single ‘Shatter’ below and look forward to a weekend of good times. We can’t wait to get there!