American heavy metal legends Metallica were today (November 10th) confirmed as the first headline act at next year’s Download Festival, due to take place on June 8th, 9th and 10th at Donington Park in Leicestershire. It was also revealed that the band would perform the entirety of their 1991 self-titled fifth studio album, presumably to mark the (late) 20th anniversary of the record.
Metallica drummer Lars Ulrich has sung the praises of the festival, proclaiming that “Six years is way too long to be away from the hallowed grounds of Donington Park. We are beyond psyched and feel privileged to come back once again to soak up the energy and vibe of the most legendary of festival sites.”
Metallica’s self-titled fifth album, commonly known as The Black Album, was released in August 1991 and reached number one in the US, the UK, and many other countries. It contained some of the band’s best-known songs, including ‘Enter Sandman’ and ‘Nothing Else Matters’, and was arguably the first of the band’s albums to really reach a ‘mainstream’ audience, especially in the UK. Metallica is also the best-selling album of the ‘SoundScan era‘ in the US, having sold over 15 million units since its release.
Download will be taking place for the tenth time in 2012, since taking over from the Monsters of Rock festival in 2003. Metallica have previously performed at Download in 2004 and 2006, as well as playing an unannounced slot at the first outing in 2003; they also performed at the UK edition of Monsters of Rock in 1985, 1987, 1991, 1995 and 1999.
Tickets for Download 2012 can be purchased from the festival’s website from November 18th.