On Sunday night, a reformed Black Sabbath brought the curtain down on Download festival 2012 to monstrous applause.
Three of the four original members of the Birmingham band teamed up for the Donnington Park spectacular ahead of an eagerly anticipated new album release next year and a planned world tour.
Ozzy Osbourne, Tony Iommi, Geezer Butler and Tommy Clufetos played to thousands of fans, including a number of younger metallers too young to have experienced the group’s eponymous 1970 Black Sabbath album the first time round.
It was the title track from that pioneering debut album that the band chose to kick off their set, which included hits from across their legendary catalogue.
One of the highlights of the show was the finale to War Pigs which inspired the whole crowd into a sing-along during the final riff.
The timing of the festival could not have been more appropriate for Birmingham’s godfathers of metal. Besides revealing their plans for a return to the scene next year, the band were honoured with an inspiration gong at the Kerrang! Awards last week.
Sabbath weren’t the only band to make their grand return at Download. Soundgarden played their first UK show for 15 years at the Donnington Park festival, the site of some of the most prestigious metal gigs of all time, such as Monster Of Rock, and something of a nirvana for rock musicians.
Celebrating its tenth anniversary, this year’s Download festival has been deemed a huge success. Festival organiser Andy Copping told the BBC it was the best yet, despite receiving criticism for adding Chase & Status to the line-up.
“We’ve got to take risks now and again otherwise the festival is just going to roll over and die,” he said.
Copping also revealed that one headliner has already been signed up for next year’s festival and a second is due to be confirmed in the coming weeks.
After the recent reformations of The Stone Roses and Black Sabbath, which groups would you like to see get back playing together?