Bloodstock 2016 – Jimmy’s overview and highlights

Bloodstock 2016 logoOh crumbs!

That’s what I thought when I found out that I’d be photographing bands this year at Bloodstock. I don’t really consider myself a photographer. Sure I can take a picture and I know what looks good and what looks a bit crap, but I’m in no way a professional photographer like some of our crewmembers. Thankfully, I didn’t feel out of my depth one bit.

Having spent the majority of last year holed up in the media tent, I was keen to try and see/photograph as many bands as I could. That did result in me feeling bloody knackered after running back and forth across the area. Thankfully the BOA arena is small enough that you can make the journey from the New Blood to the Sophie tent in a couple of minutes.

Like Iain mentioned in his overview, Bloodstock has a sense of community to it and also has nailed the size of it and the bands that play there. One of other thing worth noting is that everyone is there to have a good time and not to cause trouble. Sure, you get the odd one or two but that’s only one or two out of about 16, 000 people.

So without further ado, here are my highlights from this years rendition of BOA…

The New Blood Tent

Prior to this year, I had never visited the New Blood stage. Upon visiting there for the first time that weekend, I realized how much I had been missing out on. Some of the bands that really stood out for me over the weekend were: Witchtripper, Ramage Inc and Valous. I can see those bands going far in the near future.

Twisted Sister

I’ll be honest and say I’d never really heard of Twisted Sister prior to Friday night. I knew that they were quite famous and that they had been going a long time but that was about it. From my viewpoint, I was able to catch what was one of the best performances I’ve ever seen from a band. The lights, the music, the pyros… everything was just perfect.

Will Tudor T1_9475-Edit Bloodstock 2016Behemoth

Prior to the Festival, Will had asked me if there were any main stage bands that I wanted to shoot. I figured he was kind of joking but I figured I’d amuse him and said that I wouldn’t mind shooting Behemoth. Imagine my surprise when I get a text from him telling me to meet him five minutes before they went on stage at the entrance to the main stage photo pit. He then proceeded to give me his camera, pointed to the man in charge and then said: “Go and have fun.”

The show that Behemoth put on was incredible and I feel honored to have them as my first major band that I’ve photographed. My hugest thanks to Will for letting me shoot them.

The guy at the entrance to the Media Tent

A surprising highlight of the weekend was the person who was working as the security guy to the entrance of the media tent. When I wasn’t shooting or watching bands, I was there having a chat with him about a whole range of topics. A big thanks to you for putting up with me across the weekend and also alleviating my boredom that set in a few times.

The security at the Sophie stage

The ShowSec staff present at the Sophie stage were some of the nicest I’ve ever met. They all seemed to be really enjoying themselves and also were more than willing to have a wee chat with me as well. As Iain said in his review, they know how to safely process crowd surfers and also ensure they had a great time as well.

My fellow photographers

My final highlight of the festival was all other photographers present at the festival. At no point during the weekend did I feel out of my depth or as though I didn’t belong there. Every tog I shot alongside was very pleasant and also had rather good pit etiquette. A particular shout out to a certain Irishman and also a guy with a yellow beard. You made feel really at home there and I look forward to seeing you again next year!

All photos by Will Tudor.

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