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Slayer, Jackson and Copping awarded for final Wembley Arena show

US thrash-metal legends Slayer, along with their management, agent and promoter, were presented with award frames by the SSE Arena Wembley following their last-ever show at the 12,500-cap. London venue.

The awards were handed out by arena GM John Drury and booking manager James Harrison following the sold-out 3 November concert, part of the band’s Farewell world tour. After support from Obituary, Anthrax and Lamb of God, the show kicked off with ‘Repentless’, accompanied by 10ft columns of fire erupting from the stage, and came to a close nearly an hour and a half later with an encore comprising ‘Raining Blood’ and ‘Angel of Death’.

Pictured after the show, left to right, are Tom Araya and Ernie Gonzalez (Slayer); John Jackson (K2 Agency); Kristen Mulderig (manager); Kerry King (Slayer); Rick Sales (manager); Gary Holt (Slayer); John Drury; Andy Copping (Live Nation); Jane Miller (K2 Agency); James Harrison; and Paul Bostaph (Slayer).

 


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Metallica smash The O2 attendance record

Metallica last night made history by playing to a record-breaking 22,211 people at The O2 in London, smashing the previous record of 21,000 set by Muse in 2016.

The ‘in-the-round’ format allowed for an extended seating capacity for the US rockers’ two O2 shows, part of the UK leg of their WorldWide tour, which now heads to the SSE Hydro in Glasgow.

To mark the occasion, Metallica were presented with a specially commissioned illustration by The O2’s head of programming, Christian D’Acuna.

“It was an honour to host the heavy metal rock gods at the venue and they did not disappoint”

He comments: “Metallica smashed the highest attendance record during both of their shows at The O2. It was an honour to host the heavy metal rock gods at the venue and they did not disappoint, delivering an incredible show in the round, full of hits spanning their whole career.

“It’s been a great year for rock bands at The O2, with the likes of Green Day and Foo Fighters gracing our stage and Queens of the Stone Age and Deep Purple still to come. We hope the epic shows continue with our new 6k-capacity standing floor.”

 


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Copping confirms Download Australia in 2018

Download booker Andy Copping has confirmed to IQ rumours that the long-running metal festival is heading down under.

After rumours of a 2017 event were quashed by Copping last July, a website, downloadfestival.com.au (now offline), briefly went live on Friday, bearing the message “We’re coming for you, Melborne” [sic].

Download Australia 2018

Copping confirmed today the event is indeed on, despite the disappearance of the website, which was originally registered by Live Nation Australia Pty Ltd last year and updated on 12 October.

Download Australia is billed as being promoted by Live Nation, Unified and Secret Sounds, with which the company has a strategic partnership and is the majority owner, respectively.

Similar to Lollapalooza and, more recently, City Limits, Live Nation has over the past two years launched local editions of the UK-born festival franchise in other markets, including France and Spain.

 


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Sunny 15th Download Festival “a huge success”

Festival Republic (FR) has hailed the “huge success” of the 2017 edition of Download, which returned to Donington Park in Leicester, UK, for the 15th time last weekend.

After flash flooding at the 2016 festival, the company installed 3,000+ metres of new drainage for 2017, more than quadrupling the site’s run-off capacity in preparation for a similar downpour this year. (According to Download, more than 70 million gallons of water fell on Donington in 2016 – equivalent to 106 Olympic-sized swimming pools.)

As it happened, the weather gods saw fit to smile on Download 2017, leaving the festival largely rain-free and the improved site “greener than ever”, says FR. More than 80,000 people turned out to see headliners Aerosmith (in their final UK show), System of a Down and Biffy Clyro, with other performers including Prophets of Rage, Good Charlotte, Sum 41, Machine Gun Kelly, AFI, Simple Plan.

Other highlights included a full-size wrestling arena courtesy of WWE NXT, the return of the Wall of Death with vintage motorcycles, a silent disco, a cinema and a mobile tattoo studio.

In addition to the new drainage, FR introduced additional security measures, including armed police on site, and a new traffic plan to ease congestion following the closure of the M1 motorway.

“It’s been another really good year, with a great atmosphere and low levels”

The extra police presence was well received, with officers encouraging fans to pose for selfies using the hashtag #copaselfie. Supt Martin Ball of Leicestershire police says the festival was also a success from a policing perspective: “It’s been another really good year with a great atmosphere and low levels of crime reported to us. The success of our operation lies in our great working relationship with the organisers, Festival Republic. Although it is too soon to give definite crime figures, early indications are that reported crime is very low. Officers worked hard day and night patrolling car parks and campsites and they talked to hundreds of rock fans, swapping hats, giving high fives and having their picture taken.

“We had visibly armed officers patrolling for the first time this year following the tragic events of Manchester and London and they were all overwhelmed by the positive response from festivalgoers, who thanked them for keeping them safe. They were happy to have their picture taken many times, which was a new experience for the usually camera-shy firearms officers.”

Festival promoter Andy Copping, Live Nation’s president of UK touring, says the vibe at the festival remains unchanged, despite the security challenges posed by the Manchester Arena bombing. “This is the home of rock, and has been since 1980, and I love reading people’s social media when they get here when they say, ‘We’re home’,” he tells the Derby Telegraph. “There is something about the spirit of the place – you can feel the vibe.”

Since 2016 a sister festival has taken place in France, as Live Nation seeks to replicate the success of the UK event on the continent. Linkin Park, System of a Down and Green Day headlined Download Paris, which also took place last weekend, with the first Download Madrid set for 22–24 June.

 


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IQTV: Andy Copping, Live Nation

Welcome to the second episode of IQTV, IQ’s new YouTube video series featuring revealing interviews and insights from some of the biggest players in the international live music business.

Following last week’s inaugural episode with Live Nation’s chairman of international music, Thomas Johansson, we continue our series of interviews commemorating the company’s 10th year in the business with Download festival booker and president of UK touring Andy Copping.

In an interview filmed at ILMC 28 in March, Copping talks advancing from regional to national promotion, the genesis of Download, the rise of social media marketing and and the “roll of the dice” that led to AC/DC’s return to the festival circuit…

 


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Copping confirms no Download Festival Australia

There will be no Download Festival in Australia in 2017, festival booker Andy Copping has confirmed.

Despite speculation that Live Nation’s flagship UK metal festival – which launched a well-received international spin-off, in Paris, last month – will set a course for Down Under in 2017 or ’18, filling the void left by the demise of AJ Maddah’s Soundwave (Music Feeds reports that a line-up announcement in expected in 2017), Copping tells IQ it’s not happening, adding that he’s “confused as to why the Australian press would pick up on something in July from February”.

Live Nation Australasia partnered with local promoter Unified for a joint touring venture, Unify Presents, in February.

Copping first alluded to an Australian event in a Twitter exchange with fans in February, telling them to not “give up hope” and “watch this space” for further news.

Maddah added fuel to the fire a few days later by namechecking Download, Perth’s Legion Music Fest (announced for 2016 but delayed a year) and former European touring festival Sonisphere, which has been on hiatus since 2014.

But they’re barking up the wrong tree, says Copping: “It’s a non-story.”

 


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