Ah you have to laugh. These crazy Scandinavian types are always at it with their crazy metal! Amon Amarth really do add some cheese to the proceedings but thats fine, because they put on a good show and today, on the Tuborg Stage they've certainly done that. Theres a good bottle fight going on down at the front of the crowd a good 10 minutes before the band even come on. Thats normally quite a good sign at Download.
The synchronised, blonde-haired windmilling is rather amusing and certainly gets a good reaction from the crowd. The music starts off well with a good heavy groove but seems to deteriorate into guttural noise and incoherence. Theres a lot of good note hitting and tapping from the guitarists however, but the sound gradually gets a little too tinny for my ears. The songs generally get a little too fast and noisy - coupled with the sound fading in and out from the speakers - makes for a performance less than pleasurable. The slower sections and the solos were very good however.
"Cry of the Blackbirds" had some good samples thrown in for good measure and a great backing riff. The drumbeat was also catchy and well performed but again, the sound from the speakers let the band down a little. "Runes to my Memory" went down well. Fast drumming but a slower riff laid over the top with a simple sound that sat well with the crowd.
Amon Amarth really do live up to the silly Viking cliche but they do it well and you cant fault the music either. Good for a laugh now and then.