Team NME have descended upon Madrid for the glorious return of Mad Cool, which has taken over the Spanish capital for the first time since 2019. With a killer line-up that boasts huge headliners such as Metallica and The Killers, guitar heroes Sports Team and St Vincent, plus mega-exciting local acts including irenegarry and Megane Mercury, it’s set to be a huge weekend.

To get a taste of the action, keep up to date with our rolling photo gallery below, as we bring coverage from every corner of the festival site as it happens. Keep checking back for updates – as told through our stunning photos. Let’s go!

Day one: we’re back, baby!

Credit: Press

What a beautiful view.

Day one: kings of the mosh pit

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Credit: Andy Ford for NME

Frank Carter & The Rattlesnakes stormed the Region Of Madrid stage, matching the intensity of the heatwave with their similarly scorching rock belters.

Day one: Yungblud is all smiles

Yungblud live
Credit: Andy Ford for NME

The pop-punk misfit was overjoyed to be at his first Mad Cool, telling us that “Spanish crowds sing louder than any other country in the world”. Right on!

Day one: jump up, jump up and get down!

yungblud live
Credit: Andy Ford for NME

Our favourite Donny boy never fails to deliver a raucous set.

Day one: Carly Rae Jepsen achieves pop hero status

Credit: Andy Ford for NME

Jeppers kept the bangers coming in a set stuffed with her biggest hits, and even found time to air her gorgeous new single ‘Western Wind’.

Day one: cut to the feeling

Credit: Andy Ford for NME

Pure, unbridled euphoria in a photo. Perhaps CRJ is as excited to be at Mad Cool as we are!

Day one: Placebo hit up the main stage

placebo live
Credit: Andy Ford for NME

The groundbreaking rockers were on exhilarating form, delivering tracks from their stellar 2022 comeback album ‘Never Let Me Go’.

Day one: through the fire and the flames

metallica live
Credit: Andy Ford for NME

The mighty Metallica brought plenty of pyro to their huge headline set.

Day one: horns to the sky!

metallica live
Credit: Andy Ford for NME

The veteran rock Gods got the crowd rocking out to all their hits.

Day one: who’s got James smiling like this?

metallica live
Credit: Andy Ford for NME

Here’s guitarist James Hetfield flashing a huge grin as he rips through another massive riff.

Day one: all hail CHVRCHES

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The Scottish trio lit up the festival site with their luminescent synth-pop bangers.

Day one: Twenty One Pilots don balaclavas

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The duo brought the costumes and some smoke machines – and a massive crowd!

Day one: Twenty One Pilots do their own stunts

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Backflips, confetti and big production value – Tyler Joseph and Josh Dun closed out the first night of Mad Cool with some serious bombast.

Day two: back at it again

Credit: Jaime Massieu

Amyl and The Sniffers put on a scorching show on the Madrid Is Life stage.

Day two: a class act

modest mouse
Modest Mouse at Mad Cool 2022 (Credit: Andy Ford for NME)

“I’m gonna let you know something up front: my hype level is this. I’m not good at hyping up crowds. That’s it. Thanks for coming to hear our music,” Modest Mouse frontman Isaac Brock tells the audience at their late afternoon set. No matter – the legendary band don’t need hype to make their set a good time, as they demonstrate with their killer Mad Cool performance.

Day two: ushering in the night

Credit: Jaime Massieu

London Grammar’s stunning performance came with the perfect accompaniment: the sun setting over Mad Cool Festival. Closing with a euphoric, extended version of ‘Lose Your Head’, the trio’s set was the ideal way to usher in the night.

Day two: Deftones dominate

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Closing their three-month tour with a final stop at Mad Cool, Deftones wowed over a colossal crowd on the main stage.

Day two: open up the dancefloor

Credit: Andy Ford

Sigrid’s slick set of synth-pop smashers got everyone on their feet.

Day two: look at these Dragons roar

Imagine Dragons
Credit: Andy Ford for NME

“It feels like we’re with old friends,” Imagine Dragons frontman Dan Reynolds told the audience during their set. Given the response of the crowd, it looks like Mad Cool agree.

Day two: St. Vincent struts her stuff

Credit: Andy Ford

St. Vincent put on a late-night show to remember over on the Region Of Madrid stage.

Day two: he’s the man!

Credit: Rob Loud

The Killers brought heaps of back-to-back bangers during their headline set.

Day two: The Killers bring us a world exclusive

Credit: Rob Loud

“Do you wanna be the first to hear us play a new song right now?” asked frontman Brandon Flowers during their set – the answer was obviously yes. Debuting new track ‘Boy’, it was an exciting glimpse of the band’s next release.

Day two: Tove Lo brings the good vibes

Credit: Andy Ford

Tove Lo celebrated “the last ones standing” at her late-night show over on the Region of Madrid stage, treating the revellers to a party-starting set of pop goodness.

Day two: Foals close the show

Credit: Andy Ford

Foals blitzed through a raucous, career-spanning set to close the festivities on day two.

Day three: MØ shares the love

Credit: Jaime Massieu

The Danish pop sensation got up close and intimate with her fans during her evening set.

Day three: rocking out with The War On Drugs

Credit: Jaime Massieu

Adam Granduciel and co. delivered a life-affirming performance on the main stage as the sun began to set over the festival site.

Day Three: come fly with Jamie Cullen

Credit: Andy Ford for NME

Aided by his aerodynamic stage presence, jazzy singer Jamie Cullen gave us his all on the Region Of Madrid stage.

Day three: dancing with the dead

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Phoebe Bridgers’ sunset set featured cathartic releases, joyous shouts for women’s rights and, of course, a selection of skeleton costumes among her backing band.

Day three: it’s giving… international party-starter

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Coming all the way from London to “have some fucking fun”, Manchester’s alternative hip-hop star IAMDDB got the crowd pumped with her aggressive, cocksure tunes and utter Northern cheekiness.

Day three: having some devilish fun

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Incubus took us down memory lane with their career-spanning set, much to the delight of the excitable Mad Cool crowd.

Day three: no pyro, no party

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The cloaked rebellious bandits that are Muse will the people of Mad Cool to rage and emote through all the political rubbish currently circulating throughout the world.

Day three: sisters are doing it for themselves

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California trio (and sisters, duh!) Haim’s set was a whole lotta guitar-wielding, drum-smashing, face-pulling and family-feeling jumble of a party.

Day three: “This little light of mine…”

Credit: Andy Ford For NME

Alt-J certainly let their lights shine, staying true to the festival’s slogan (“La música vuelve a brillar en Madrid”). Illuminating the Mad Cool stage for the last time on day three, it was a fantastic spectacle to behold.

Day four: hola, hola, hola

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Mad Cool Festival 2022 (Picture: Andy Ford for NME)

Man, it’s a hot one – but we’re loving every minute here in Madrid.

Day four: Leon lights up the Mad Cool stage

Leon Bridges
Leon Bridges at Mad Cool Festival 2022 (Picture: Andy Ford for NME)

Leon Bridges’ smooth, sun-kissed set on the Madrid Is Life stage helped Mad Cool ease their way into the festival’s fourth day.

Day four: shut up and play the hits

Pixies at Mad Cool Festival 2022 (Picture: Andy Ford for NME)

And boy, did Pixies do just that on the Mad Cool main stage: ‘Monkey Gone To Heaven’, ‘Vamos’, ‘Caribou’, ‘Here Comes Your Man’, ‘Debaser’, ‘Where Is My Mind?’ – the list of classics just went on and on.

Day four: sing with me now

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Gang Of Youths at Mad Cool Festival 2022 (Picture: Jaime Massieu)

Gang Of Youths’ triumphant set on the Region Of Madrid stage was a communal affair.

Day four: he bangs the drums

Mura Masa
Mura Masa at Mad Cool Festival 2022 (Picture: Andy Ford for NME)

Mura Masa drummed up all sorts of good vibrations on The Loop stage as night-time descended on the festival site.

Day four: Zara brings the zeal

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Zara Larsson at Mad Cool Festival 2022 (Picture: Jaime Massieu)

Zara Larsson’s slick performance on the Region Of Madrid stage went down a treat.

Day four: Editors take a well-earned bow

Editors at Mad Cool Festival 2022 (Picture: Jaime Massieu)

Mad Cool had a lotta love for the Birmingham five-piece.

Day four: Florence in full flow

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Florence + The Machine at Mad Cool Festival 2022 (Picture: Andy Ford for NME)

Florence + The Machine’s headline slot on the Mad Cool main stage was a typically spell-binding affair.

Day four: Royal Blood reign supreme

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Royal Blood at Mad Cool Festival 2022 (Picture: Andy Ford for NME)

Mike Kerr and Ben Thatcher brought day four of Mad Cool to an end with a typically barnstorming set on the Madrid Is Life stage. Our highlight? Thatcher banging his massive gong.

Check back here at NME for the latest news, interviews, photos and more from Mad Cool 2022.

NME is an official media partner of Mad Cool Festival 2022

The post The story of Mad Cool Festival 2022 – in beautiful photos appeared first on NME.


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