Bloodstock Festival 2023. Saturday morning. The Sophie Lancaster Stage is a sacred space where the fierce sounds of Metal intertwine with a message of empathy and understanding. Ambrius and Tortured Demon proved the transformative and unifying power of music works in the morning too.
They may have only formed in 2022, but Ambrius have Bloodstock alumni in their ranks. It’s traditionally the graveyard slot, but for the faithful who push the hangovers to one side to get into the Sophie tent at 10.30 am, it was worth the effort.
Ambrius prove to be an ideal opener, blending genres in a heady mix of modern Metal. Growls switch with soaring cleans, and the band are tight and on point.
It’s nothing groundbreaking, but they hit several sweet spots. As they say, it’s an opportunity to play on a stage they could only dream of a few years ago.
The small crowd are rewarded with a slick set and earns Ambrius a few new fans in the process.
Last year it was Hellfekted who coined the phrase “morning mosh”. Come 11.20 am, and the Sophie tent is almost full as up-and-coming UK thrashers Tortured Demon take to the stage.
Now a four-piece with two albums under their belt, the Mancunians are a million miles away from the trio that saw hundreds cram the Jaeger stage on their last appearance.
It’s a consuming performance, with a non-stop circle pit and bodies flying over the barrier. The band has channelled many of their influences into a tightly honed outfit.
Jacob Parkinson leads from the front, and whilst his demands for pits and jumping from the front to the back are a little cliched, there’s nothing but pure enthusiasm and energy on display.
A ferocious set brings the Thrash back to the centre of attention, and for those of us who favour the frenetic stomp, it’s a fine way to lead into lunchtime.
Bloodstock Festival 2023 is held over the weekend of 10-13 August 2023. MetalTalk’s Paul Hutchings and Adrian Stonley report from Catton Park.
All MetalTalk Bloodstock Festival 2023 coverage can be found at MetalTalk.net/tag/bloodstock-2023.
Weekend early bird tickets for Bloodstock 2024 will be available to purchase at the box office on-site for £165. This is the cheapest way to buy a 2024 ticket, minus any online booking or admin fees.
Bloodstock 2022 can be relived at MetalTalk.net/tag/bloodstock-2022.