The United States summer concert tour culture has definitely improved over the last few years. There are a bunch of cool one-off festivals dates and weekend festivals now, which is cool for the discerning metal fan. Still, the king of the traveling summer metal tours is the Rockstar Energy Drink Mayhem Festival, now in its sixth year. From California this weekend, through southwest and The Rockies, to the northeast, the mid-west and then closing out down south, this traveling circus of metal and rock bands will be out for the next five weeks, hitting 26 cities.
The main stage is headlined by Rob Zombie who always puts on an exciting show, Five Finger Death Punch returning once again, Mastodon, Amon Amarth. I’m especially excited to see what Amon Amarth does out doors in the summertime on the big stage. Mastodon is always a good bet live. They played the first Mayhefest too!
The heaviest sounding stage might be the Jaegermeister stage headlined by Machine Head who also played in 2011. They are joined by Job For A Cowboy, Butcher Babies, Battlecross and Huntress. It is nice to see some more diversity on the tour this year with a few women led acts, considering how many women attend the tour. The Musicians Institute stage features Children of Bodom, hot on the heels of their brand new album Halo of Blood. Opening for them are Emmure, Born Of Osiris, late addition Attika 7, Motionless In White, and Thrown Into Exile. It’s an interesting mix of sub-genres and bands. The Sumerian Records Stage is headlined but another recent addition, Scorpion Child. Also playing that stage will be City In The Sea and the three Headbang for the Highway contest winners. In addition to the music there are all kinds of cool vendors and attractions that make this a lot of fun no matter what type of heavy music one loves. There is a little something for everyone so have some fun, stay hydrated and wear your sunblock! Get your tickets here: