Bloodstock Festival sold out weekend tickets well in advance of the event this year - real testament to the continually growing stature of this great festival in the metal world. The range of metal genres represented at Bloodstock is breathtaking, from death and black metal, through to thrash and power metal, post-metal, and cutlasses and Mjolnir's held high....Pirate and Viking metal!

Excitingly we already know two of the headliners for next years 2018 Festival, announced on the Saturday.....the mighty Gojira, and symphonic metal at its very best in the shape of the wonderful Nightwish. More about those announcements later.

This year's Bloodstock had many memorable sets that served to demonstrate that this festival inspires the very best in live performances. Here are just a few of those highlights.

Bloodstock 2017 Highlights


Forever Still (10/13) from Copenhagen proved very worthy openers on the main Dio stage with Maja Shining proving a great vocalist live, displaying a wonderful range of singing tones from gentle and beautiful to full on shout. Their last number Scars showed the dynamic metal range they can deliver, and they went down incredibly well.

Whitechapel (9/13) as ever delivered an intense deathcore set, that saw the pit open up almost immediately. At one point they announced they were going to play a slower song seeming to signal for the crowd surfers to start. The front line of three guitars certainly gives a dynamic feel to the band's sound live, especially during those breakdowns. Following them, Devilment (10/13) (with Cradle of Filth's Dani Filth on vocals) are a fantastic sounding band, a perfect fit musically with Dani's growled vocals and shrieks. The band have a fantastically gifted keyboard player and second vocalist in Lauren Francis with some of the more impressive parts shining through during the proggier moments.

Decapitated (11/13) really hit their stride on the main stage, with scything guitar and bass colliding with intense poly-rhythm's on the drums. It's 25 years since the band formed as a live entity, and there is an air of celebration to their set following the release of their stunning new record Anticult. The audience reaction was one of the more intense on the day as Decapitated's unique breed of technical death metal built up the dynamics and overall power pouring out from the stage. Testament (12/13) give possibly the performance of the day, playing a joyous and musically astonishingly tight, old school thrash set. The song Struggle is dedicated to the struggles of Native Americans, and you just know their hearts are in the right place. In Chuck Billy they have arguably the best vocalist in thrash metal!

On then to the headliners and what can one say about Amon Amarth (11/13)! Viking metal, set in an epic stage set, with battles on stage, and a middle earth serpent to contend with...... and glorious anthemic and uplifting metal! A perfect headlining set for the Friday. The band are also very humbled and moved by the fantastic crowd reaction, including the mass rowing of a longboat by the thousands of fans around the main stage. A defining moment in their career.


Saturday opens with Fallujah (11/13) hammering the audience with their powerful prog tinged death metal. It certainly woke up the slightly dazed crowd at the main stage after Friday night's partying. Thrash legends Kreator (11/13) added to this by delivering a stunning set of thrash anthems, creating some of the biggest and scariest mosh pits of the Festival.

The day though belongs, without a doubt, to Hatebreed (12/13). Their hardcore melodic metal has an emotional resonance that just ripples through the main stage audience. They dedicate This Is Now to anyone who has experienced mental health difficulties, with vocalist Jamey Jasta saying "... you are not on your own. This is our therapy." The band and fans just felt completely in sync throughout as almost everyone in the crowd is either dancing or bouncing around in the mosh pit!

Up next was arguably one of the most anticipated headliner shows in Bloodstock history. Ghost (10/13) provided a rousing ending to Saturday, with infectious songs, drenched in melodic sounding guitars and keyboards. They are very strong instrumentally and in Papa Emeritus III have those vocals and that charisma.


So to Sunday and Venom Prison (10/13) on the Dio stage. They show why so many people rate this great band. Combining death metal with thrash elements, they also deal with serious social themes. In Larissa they also have a very expressive death metal vocalist, and gave their set everything they had. They also had a heart warming 'hunt saboteurs' banner draped over one of their amplifiers throughout.

Courtesans (12/13) on the Sophie Stage, mix influences from Patti Smith, Siouxsie and the Banshees, and some very dynamic metal; and a powerful feminist ethos that provides an exceptionally positive encouragement for women in metal. They play an exceptional set that completely wows the audience. They can within a single song communicate so many different musical and emotional moods, it is quite breathtaking. Expect big things from them.

Bossk (12/13) and Wintersun (11/13) finish off Sunday on the Sophie stage in triumphant style. Bossk open up with the magnificent Kobe, allowing their shimmering post metal sound to completely fill the Sophie Tent. At one point on Atom Smasher, the three guitars are emitting cascades of melodic notes out from the stage, with the lighting matching this ethereal sound, with repeating patterns of blue light. The impact is completely thrilling.

Wintersun from Finland play to a packed Sophie stage, with their epic metal, that brings together symphonic, folk and death metal influences, providing an enthralling sound. When Jari Maenpaa, the bands vocalist and writer, says to the audience "Do you want to hear some old shit", the audience reaction is overwhelming. Winter Madness charges at the audience with blast beats and majestic riffs, combined with soaring harmony vocals. Just amazing!

Bloodstock 2018

So in some very welcome news made at the festival Gojira and Nightwish were announced as two of the headliners for 2018! Gojira have ripped up Bloodstock several times with their intense and melodic death metal, that takes no prisoners. With a career trajectory that seemingly has no chance of derailing at the moment, the tour following Magma has proven to be their biggest yet. The band have already confirmed they're working on plans for this show and we simply cannot wait. The best live band in metal at the moment.

Alongside Gojira, Nightwish are heading back for Bloodstock in 2018 for the first time in ten years and the first time as headliners! It doesn't get any better in the symphonic metal world than this great band. In Floor Jansen they also have one of the best vocalists in metal.

Early bird weekend tickets are now available via this link - BLOODSTOCK 2018 WOOOO