Limp Bizkit at Leeds 2010
Just over a week after his fortieth birthday, Fred Durst found himself on the main stage at Leeds Festival. He may not be quite as svelte as he was at the start of the Limp Bizkit odyssey some fifteen years ago, but the man is still one astoundingly cool son of a gun. This was another set that was a pretty big deal for many on the infamous 'Blink' day, but the rap-metal legends took on the task with a refreshing level of humility, stating that it was a pleasure for them to be the 'warm up' for Cypress Hill.
In a set that would zip by quicker than an arm into the air for the 'Rollin' motion, did what they said on the Bizkit tin. It was a solid set list, and there was plenty to make happy those of us who have been waiting for some time to get a chance to witness their delicious brand of attitude laden rock. The excitement surged with that initial drumbeat of 'My Generation' , but for some reason the crowd's attention was rather too much of an unruly beast for even ice-cool Sir Durst to tame. Sexy metal to sink your teeth into splattered the sound of testosterone into the air via the medium of filthy guitar classics like 'Eat You Alive' and the irresistibly aggressive 'Break Stuff'. The surreal appearance of on/off guitarist Wes Borland in full clown make-up, long black wig and fur coat added for an unexpected, but customarily peculiar treat.
There was a definite sense that the set was too much of a whirlwind for people to really get into it. It was a brief slot that was met with a generally rather reserved reaction, and audience participation was something that had to be coaxed out with some effort. Performance-wise, everything sounded as it should but there was a clear lack of energy. You feel obliged to cut a little slack for a band whose front-man who has still undoubtedly 'got it' at forty, but given their music is about the smoulder of the rawest of human behaviours, they suffered for the drop of pace. It could also be down to the fact that there just weren't enough Bizkit lovers at the tea table. It did seem to take the unmistakeable 'twang twang' of the Mission Impossible theme tune fed through 'Take A Look Around' and the infamous cover of 'Faith' to get the masses to humour their voice-boxes. A show that neither disappointed nor dazzled.