D-Day at Download
The main stage at Donington's Download Festival has been graced by plenty of larger-than-life icons over recent years, from KISS to Marilyn Manson to Slipknot. Tenacious D's Jack Black and Kyle Gass may not necessarily fit the typical rock star profile, but there is such an openly stupid camaraderie to their set, complemented by their remarkable air of confidence, that allows them to call the Jim Marshall stage their very own.
As the phoenix backdrop spreads its wings and rears its phallic-shaped body, it becomes clear that a decent proportion of the set is to be focused on their recently released album, Rize of the Fenix. Clumped together at the start of the set, the new material does make for a slow start to the set and although songs such as Roadie are mildly amusing, the festival crowd would clearly be more receptive to omitted sing-along favourites such as Wonderboy.
Ludicrousness ensues throughout the set, with an evil alien squid making an appearance during Deth Starr and, despite looking like a mutant asparagus, it does reiterate that this is one performance not to be taken too seriously. Similarly with the satanic possession of guitarist John Konesky during Beezleboss; it is almost cringeworthy but it is just so widely accepted that this all comes as part and parcel of a Tenacious D set. Despite coating their show with theatrics, at no point does the band's musical performance suffer, which is incredibly rewarding to witness considering the potential for things to go awry.
Favourites likeFuck Her Gently and Tribute receive an overwhelming response, with the latter proving to be a true Download moment; the sizeable crowd uniting as they imitate Black's over-the-top performance. Although they did not necessarily boast the greatest sound of the weekend, Tenacious D was a great addition to the festival line-up and slotted in perfectly after an outrageously funny Steel Panther set.