Returning to Donington Park from June 14-16, the 2019 festival will be headlined by Slipknot, Def Leppard and Tool, all of which have topped the Download bill before. But speaking in the latest issue of Music Week, Copping tipped a host of other acts to step up in future years.
“I look at bands that haven’t headlined the festival that definitely could and some have been around a while and some haven’t,” he said. “Green Day – never headlined; Blink-182 – never headlined; Foo Fighters – never headlined; Alter Bridge, Disturbed and Deftones... Five Finger Death Punch have the potential.
"Those have all just come straight off my tongue. Then you’ve got the younger element: Fall Out Boy, Paramore, Panic! At The Disco, Bring Me The Horizon, A Day To Remember, who are all snapping at the heels.”
Boosted by an exclusive UK performance by Guns N'Roses, the UK's premier rock and metal event enjoyed a triumphant 2018, but this weekend's event is on track to match its success.
Sales are on a par with last year, so I'm very, very happy. The vibe has been hugely positive from when we made the first announcement.
“Sales are on par with last year, so I’m very, very happy," said Copping, Live Nation's president of UK touring. "After the success of last year and the fact that so many people had such a good time, the goodwill that we’ve got is super strong. The vibe on the festival has been hugely positive from when we made the first announcement."
Other artists set to perform over the weekend include Slash ft Myles Kennedy & The Conspirators, Die Antwoord, Smashing Pumpkins, Whitesnake, Trivium, Lamb Of God and Slayer.
"We seem to have got ourselves into a spot where we’re [established] on the rock calendar," added Copping. "We’ve had good years and we’ve had not so good years, but there is a hardcore collection of fans that come to Download regardless, which is great. We certainly don’t take it for granted and we really appreciate that loyalty.”
PHOTO: James Bridle