Maturity and arrogance obviously go hand in hand
When a band receives another invitation back to Download Festival, they know they must be doing something right. Fronted by the admirably talented Chris Robertson, the Kentuckian quartet graced the Donington site for the third time and did so with a far greater air of maturity.
Beginning with aptly titled 'Change' from their newly released album 'Between the Devil and the Deep Blue Sea,' the Southern rockers prepared to illustrate just how far they had progressed over an eventful four years. With heaving riffs and brash vocals, Black Stone Cherry have not only perfected a distinguished sound, but have honed one that is superbly suited to live performance. The afternoon had been delightfully sunny, but coincidentally as the band stormed into 'Rain Wizard,' ominous clouds gradually began to form over the town of Castle Donington. Looks like we know who to blame for the Friday evening showers and the horrendous Sunday washout...
Whilst the band understandably wanted to promote their new album by including 'Killing Floor' and new single 'White Trash Millionaire' to their set, they also treated their crowd to a bold cover of Adele's chart-topping hit 'Rolling in the Deep'. Old favourites 'Maybe Someday' and 'Shooting Star' offered a voyage back to the days of the band's debut album, before they continued with another catchy new number 'Blame it on the Boom Boom'. As they finished their set with 'Lonely Train,' Robertson stated that he believed the moment would be THE key memory that the fans would take away with them from the entire festival. With a star-studded line-up of astounding live acts (System of a Down, Alice Cooper and Rob Zombie, but to name just a few), this did make the beanie-wearing frontman sound completely disillusioned. Black Stone Cherry has always been an impressive live act, but Robertson's swollen arrogance came across as somewhat disrespectful.
Black Stone Cherry used to be a band that would pause mid way through their festival slots, in a moment of awe, to ask their sizeable crowds if they would mind if they took an audience photo. Now under the perception that they are comparable to rock 'n' roll legendary, Black Stone Cherry appear to have changed. Chris Robertson is well aware that he and his band sound fantastic, with this ever-rising confidence having sapped any sense of modesty. However, it comes as no surprise that the band have earned a support slot on the upcoming Alter Bridge tour; they are still a great live band with a promising future still ahead of them.