Reading 2015: What we learned from Limp Bizkit's set

Last night, Limp Bizkit headlined the NME/Radio 1 Stage. From the opening bars of Rollin’, things got very rowdy very quickly…

ROLLIN’ JUST MIGHT BE THE BEST WAY TO START A SET From the second Fred Durst drops that line, the tent covering the second stage becomes a swarming, bubbling, moshy mess, as what must be seven or eight thousand people proceed to lose their minds to one of the all-time great metal anthems. Whatever you think of Bizkit and their standing in 2015, you cannot deny the power of those tunes, and when they come, they bring the house down. Chaotic scenes indeed.

Limp Bizkit's Fred Durst, live at Reading 2015

Limp Bizkit's Fred Durst, live at Reading 2015 (Image credit: Will Ireland)

WES BORLAND REMAINS THE WEIRDEST DUDE IN ROCK He was always the oddball cousin of the group, and not just because of his wacky costumes. Tonight, Wes Borland remains an eerie peripheral presence, forever glaring out into the crowd with a look on his face that makes him look less like a metal guitarist and more like a curious alien analysing us silly humans jumping around in a tent. It’s mad to think that Bizkit spent a number of years without him. Although we’re still not sold on his Papa Lazarou-in-Hawaii gear.

Hawaii the lads: Wes Borland, a man who gets dressed in the dark

Hawaii the lads: Wes Borland, a man who gets dressed in the dark (Image credit: Will Ireland)

THEY BLOODY LOVE COCKING ABOUT BETWEEN SONGS In a set that only just touches on an hour, it seems like Bizkit spend as much time jamming sections of other bands’ songs (Sweet Child O’ Mine, Master Of Puppets and Run The Jewels’ Close Your Eyes all make fleeting appearances) or dropping pointless samples (shout-out to DMX) as they do playing their own tracks. It’s fun and suits the party atmosphere, but when you have as many iron-clad bangers as they do, it’s a tad frustrating. Especially when it comes to our next point….

Limp Bizkit: an in-tents experience

Limp Bizkit: an in-tents experience (Image credit: Will Ireland)

THAT RAGE AGAINST THE MACHINE COVER NEEDS TO GO Look, guys: we love Killing In The Name as much as the next person. Hell, chances are we probably love it more than the next person. But anyone who’s been in a rock club on a regular basis has probably heard that track about 50,000 times already. You’re Limp Fucking Bizkit! People should be covering your songs! It just feels lazy when you’re packing so many anthems of your own, and that’s a damn shame. It doesn’t dampen the fact that they put on a great show, but it all ultimately makes us feel that…

Fred Durst points out how many decades we've been waiting for their new album, more or less

Fred Durst points out how many decades we've been waiting for their new album, more or less (Image credit: Will Ireland)

IT’S TIME TO GET THAT NEW ALBUM OUT Alright, so Ready To Go aside, the material they’ve released from the forever delayed Stampede Of The Disco Elephants is questionable at best. Nonetheless, the fact is that their determination to mess about as much as possible at their shows suggests that Bizkit are getting bored, so surely it’s time to get in that studio, find a producer who’ll do you justice and make that album immediately.

Merlin Alderslade
Executive Editor, Louder

Merlin moved into his role as Executive Editor of Louder in early 2022, following over ten years working at Metal Hammer. While there, he served as Online Editor and Deputy Editor, before being promoted to Editor in 2016. Before joining Metal Hammer, Merlin worked as Associate Editor at Terrorizer Magazine and has previously written for the likes of Classic Rock, Rock Sound, eFestivals and others. Across his career he has interviewed legends including Ozzy Osbourne, Lemmy, Metallica, Iron Maiden (including getting a trip on Ed Force One courtesy of Bruce Dickinson), Guns N' Roses, KISS, Slipknot, System Of A Down and Meat Loaf. He is also probably responsible for 90% of all nu metal-related content making it onto the site.