Nobody Gets Out Alive!

Well, what can be said that hasn't already been said about this band and its enigmatic character of a frontman? Finally, Skindred have made it to the main stage at Download where they belong. Any band that marches on to a Drum and Bass version of the Imperial marching music from Star Wars deserves props and Skindred get them! The crowd is shouting and screaming even before the opening track, 'Roots Rock Riot' is played.

Benji is his typical self, bigging up the crowd, working the stage and putting on a performance of his own. The sound is good with plenty of bass, distorted guitars and heavy drumming. 'Pressure' goes down very well with a little take on the Queen/Bowie song of the same name. This gets plenty of laughs from the crowd who have been bouncing and going mental since the get-go. This is a good idea by the organisers of Download. This kind of sound and entertainment is what you need at this time in the morning. 'Rat Race' garners a less warm reaction but still keeps the crowd going.

Theres plenty of clapping, shouts and energy coming off the crowd which Benji plays to expertly. His little chats with the crowd in between songs get plenty of laughs and keep the crowd going. 'Trouble' and 'Cause A Riot' go down very well, but the closing track 'Nobody' gets even this reviewer down into the pit! The energy is pretty intense though sadly the pits aren't as big as they might have been. I was hoping 'Bruises' would get a showing but sadly not. Nevertheless, Benji leaves us with his signature keyboard held high with the demo button pressed firmly down, much to the amusement of the crowd.

Not only are Skindred an excellent blend of two very aggressive styles of music but the performance and acting from Benji helps make this an excellent start to the day, even if it suddenly decides to rain.