Orange Goblin celebrated their tenth anniversary last year and today, as with their impressive show at Download, they show exactly why they are still around. Their reputation for impressive live shows precedes them and they pull in a big crowd.
Front man Ben gives his usual engaging performance that runs from a myriad of classic metal posturing (foot up on monitor, metal hands salute) to grinning insanely and jumping down to shake hands with as many of the front rows as he can. Kicking off the set with 'Some You Win, Some You Lose' sets the standard straight away and they never let it drop throughout the set. This is classic heavy metal speeded up a little to give it a contemporary feel and it serves as a reminder of just how good it is to get back to the roots of the genre.
Guitarist Joe delivers wave after wave of classic sounding riffs and some great wah guitar solos. There are no weak links in the set with 'The Ballad of Solomon Eagle', 'Aquatic Fanatic' and 'They Come Back' all receiving rapturous applause. There is humour as well, particularly when Joe forgets how to play the intro to 'Round Up the Horses'. Stand in bass player The Reverend from Viking lovers Blood Island Raiders does a fine job despite a couple of confused looks at drummer Chris.
Both band and crowd are clearly enjoying themselves and there's even time for Ben to bring his son Max on stage to say hello before 'Scorpionica'. It's been another great performance from a band that seem totally at home in their environment, know where they're going and consider it a bonus that so many people want to come along for the ride.