It’s thirty-two years and a day since the self-titled (‘1987’) Whitesnake album peaked at number two in the Billboard album chart but David Coverdale and the current line-up reminded their contemporaries exactly how to deliver a good time rock’n’roll show with a performance well worthy of a headline slot.

Kahmel Farahani and Dany Jones
14th June 2019: 9.00pm

Ten years to the day since their Download 2009 appearance, Coverdale’s return to these hallowed grounds was the highlight of the day so far and audience simply lapped up every single move and note as Whitesnake slid it in right to the top.


Def Leppard topped the bill on 14th June 2009 with Tesla also enjoying a Main Stage slot and on 14th June 2019, Whitesnake once again triumphed as the twin guitars of Joel Hoekstra and Reb Beach sang this vast array of modern day love songs as Coverdale produced an almost flawless performance.

Whitesnake looked and sounded better than ever at Download today, currently the only UK date of their ‘Flesh & Blood’ world tour, and of the biggest moments of the performance was when they played their latest single, ‘Shut Up And Kiss Me’.


Coverdale delighted the crowd with his usual joviality and especially when he walked down to the barrier to sing ‘Give Me All Your Love’ and while letting go of some seriously high notes that would put lesser (and far younger) men at risk of serious hernia. He does get breaks these days however, the highlight today being Tommy Aldridge’s bare handed drum solo.

All hell broke out for ‘Here I Go Again’ with the whole Download crowd singing it to, and with, David in another glorious moment and as the weather changed for the worst again, there was no crying in the rain, just a mass appreciation of one of the greats and a great, solid performance.

Picture by @rockmealsick


Download needed someone of the magnitude of Slash to follow Whitesnake and the iconic guitarist’s solo act with Alter Bridge frontman Myles Kennedy is nothing short of absolute class. It’s Mr Pitch Perfect and Mr Super Cool and they brought the blue skies back to Download, as well as a collection of figurines on the cabs, including a rather large dinosaur.

Songs from new album, ‘Living The Dream’, made up most of today’s set with bassist Todd Kerns totally shining in his own right, especially during the memorable ‘My Antidote’ before an epic Slash guitar solo and Kerns taking the lead for ‘Dr Alibi’, which he dedicated to Lemmy.


Slash simply had to include at least one Guns N’ Roses classic in the set and the rain started to come down again just as the band kicked into the almost ironically titled ‘Nightrain’, which is not about precipitation at all.

Set closer ‘World On Fire’ is not about flames and plumes of smoke either but Slash and his excellent band burned up this stage today and left Donington Park ablaze with the whole arena demanding “one more song!”


Next up, headliner Def Leppard, and we’ll be back with that later this evening, plus more from Download Friday, a truly monumental day. Check out our Download 2019 coverage so far right here.



Saturday 15th June
Main Stage
Slipknot – 9.10pm
Die Antwoord – 6.40pm
Trivium – 5pm
Skindred – 3.35pm
Behemoth – 2.20pm
Power Trip – 1.10pm
Royal Republic – 12pm
Alien Weaponry – 11am

Zippo Encore Stage
Halestorm – 7.45pm
Stone Temple Pilots – 6.20pm
Three Days Grace – 5.10pm
Brothers Osborne – 4pm
Epica – 2.55pm
Animals As Leaders – 1.50pm
Elvana – 12.45pm
Bad Wolves – 11.50am
The Inspector Cluzo – 11am

The Avalanche Stage hosted by Kerrang! Radio
Simple Creatures – 8.40pm
The Wonder Years – 7.25pm
nothing,nowhere. – 6.10pm
Trash Boat – 5.05pm
Roam – 4pm
Palisades – 2.55pm
The Beaches – 1.55pm
Hot Milk – 12.55pm
Yours Truly – 11.55am
Parting Gift – 11am

The Dogtooth Stage
Carcass – 7.40pm
Batushka – 6.35pm
Intervals – 5.35pm
The Hu – 4.35pm
Riding The Low – 3.35pm
Lovebites – 2.40pm
Queen Zee – 1.45pm
Underside – 12.50pm
Cloud – 11.55am
Vambo – 11am

Sunday 16th June
Main Stage
Tool – 9.25pm
The Smashing Pumpkins – 7.10pm
Lamb Of God – 5.20pm
Amon Amarth – 3.50pm
Godsmack – 2.30pm
Underoath – 1.10pm
I Prevail – 12pm
Cane Hill – 11am

Zippo Encore Stage
Slayer – 8.45pm
Dream Theater – 7pm
Anthrax – 5.35pm
Beartooth – 4.20pm
State Champs – 3.10pm
Starset – 2.05pm
Badflower – 1pm
Dinosaur Pile-Up – 12pm
Like A Storm – 11am

The Avalanche Stage hosted by Kerrang! Radio
Enter Shikari – 8.20pm
Fever 333 – 7.10pm
Palaye Royale – 6pm
The Amity Affliction – 5pm
Our Last Night – 4pm
Black Peaks – 3pm
Heart Of A Coward – 2pm
Allusinlove – 1pm
Black Futures – 12pm
RedHook – 11am

The Dogtooth Stage
Municipal Waste – 7.50pm
Whitechapel – 6.50pm
coldrain – 5.50pm
Alcest – 4.50pm
Toska – 4pm
Crystal Lake – 3.10pm
Kim Jennett – 2.20pm
Aaron Buchanan & The Cult Classics – 1.30pm
Blurred Vision – 12.40pm
Wolf Jaw – 11.50am
Lost In Stereo – 11am

Download takes place at Donington Park, which is just off the M1 and right next to East Midlands Airport on Friday 14th to Sunday 16th June 2019.

Sleeve Notes

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