Flying Not Dying

At first glance it seemed reasonable to see Art of Dying low down on the bill for the Gibson stage but like many others I suspect, I had underestimated them. Hailing from Vancouver, Canada, this four-piece alternative rock band held the crowd better than most early first day acts could hope for. Art of Dying drew a respectable crowd, almost filling the Gibson tent. Their style is reminiscent of Hundred Reasons, with more powerful bass lines, faster pace and clean lyrics.

Their set started off with some powerful energetic rock that was led not just by the singer but also the bassist, who managed to climb on top of the speaker stack! The vocals came across as a powerful rampage and were heightened by some excellent three piece harmonies, whilst both guitarists complimented each other perfectly with no let up in the pace throughout the entire set.

The final two songs really took both band and crowd to the limit. As well as managing to make excellent use of the guitars (apparrently loaned to them by Gibson!) the arrival on stage of some scantily clad rock chicks in ridiculously high stilt boots susprised and amused everyone. Building their set to a crescendo they peaked at exactly the right time without losing any of their infectious enthusiasm.

What remains a miracle is that the bassist didn't actually trip over his guitar lead, such was the intensity and volume of his dancing, strutting and even some generally insane diving! Art of Dying prove to be heavy crowd pleasers and are the perfect start to Download, surely on the strength of this performance they will move up the bill next year.