Heavy rockers Slipknot returned to Britain's Download Festival on Friday night (14Jun13) to perform at the event for the first time since the death of bassist Paul Gray.

They headlined the first night of the music event on Friday, kicking off a weekend which will include sets by Iron Maiden and German rockers Rammstein.

Slipknot's set at the festival marked the first time they have played the event at Donington Park in England since 2009 and their first appearance at Download since Gray's death from a drug overdose in 2010.

Frontman Corey Taylor marked the occasion by dedicating a track to his late friend, adding, "We were last on this stage four years ago... (We have) been through a lot in those four years... We've kept going, we've kept going for us, we've kept going for you (the fans) we've kept going for him (Gray)."

During the show, the band was forced to stop playing on several occasions as barriers at the front of the stage gave way. Taylor urged the audience to take a step back as security officers helped put the cordons back in place.