WACKEN 2012
Wacken Open Air FestivaAugust 2-4, 2012

AGRO, AMARANTHE, AMON AMARTH, AURA NOIR, AXEL RUDI PELL, BLAAS OF GLORY, BROILERS, BUG GIRL, CHANNELL ZERO, CHTHONIC, CIRCLE II CIRCLE, CORONER, CRADLE OF FILTH, CRIMES OF PASSION, D-A-D, DANKO JONES, DARK FUNERAL, DARKEST HOUR, DEAD BY APRIL, DECAPITATED, DELAIN, DIMMU BORGIR, DJERV, DODHEIMSGARD, DIRTY ROTTEN IMBECILES, ELECTRIC WIZARD, EISENHERZ, ENDSTILLE, ESCHENBACH, FORBIDDEN, GAMMA RAY, GEHENA, GHOST BRIGADE, GRAVEYARD, HAMMERCULT, HAMMERFALL, HENRY ROLLINS, IN EXTREMO, IN FLAMES, INSOMNIUM, KAMELOT, KYLESA, LEAVES’ EYES, LENINGRAD COWBOYS, MACHINE HEAD, MANIMALS, MANTICORA, MASSACRE, MEGAHERZ, MINISTRY, MONO INC., MOONSPELL, NAPALM DEATH, NASUM, OOMPH!, OPETH, OVERKILL, PARADISE LOST, RED FANG, RIOT GOD, RUSSKAJA, SACRED REICH, SATURNIAN, SANCTUARY, SOAR PATROL, SAXON, SCHANDMAUL, SCORPIONS, SEPULTURA, SICK OF IT ALL, SIX FEET UNDER, SUICIDE SILENCE, SYLOSIS, TESTAMENT, THE BLACK DAHLIA MURDER, THE BOSSHOSS, TORFROCK, U.D.O., UNEARTH, VICTIMS OF MADNESS, VOGELFREY, VOLBEAT, VOLXROCK, WARBRINGER, WARRIOR SOUL, WATAIIN, WBTBWB, WINTERFYLLETH, WÖLLI & DIE BAND DES JAHRES

2012 will be the year The Cutting Edge finally makes it over to the Wacken Open Air Festival (W:O:A) in Schleswig-Holstein, Germany. Heralded as the greatest Heavy Metal Music Festival on the planet, the annual event attracts 80,000 headbangers from across the globe in a three-day frenzy of metallic mayhem. All genres of metal are represented including black, death, power, thrash, gothic, folk and nu metal as well as hard rock and metalcore. The festival had its humble beginnings in 1990 as a small event for local German bands just as hair metal was being replaced by grunge. The festival struggled against and ever changing tides in music until they slowly started to attract fans willing to make the pilgrimage to the northern German farmlands. Each year the festival grew bringing headliners Blind Guardian, Doro, Pretty Maids, Motörhead, Mama’s Boys and Saxon. By 1998 the event had become THE major festival on the European metal calendar combining some of the best bands of each genre and a healthy sampling of local talent. Since the dawn of the new millennium Wacken has exploded as metal’s premier metal fest.

This year the festival boasts six stages and over 90 bands – including some of the biggest hard rock and metal bands in the world. The Scorpions, U.D.O. and Hammerfall lead the German wave while Machine Head, Testament and Overkill represent the US. Scandinavia brings Volbeat, D-A-D, In Flames, Opeth and Graveyard while the UK showcases with Paradise Lost, Electric Wizard and Saxon who are returning for their fourth time. Bands continue to pour in from France, the Netherlands, Italy, Spain and the Easter Block countries. Dozens of young bands will be featured giving them a chance at the big stage. The Metal Village will be set up to include a hearty sampling of food and beverage with several merchandise and novelty shops along the lane. Record, t-shirt and CD stores will be in abundance. The Metal Circus will roll out the Bruchenball Tournament, Role-Players Combats & Battle, Vikings Weaponry and Battles, Knight Tales and Combat, Highland Games and the all-important Fire Show.

During the festival, goers can camp on several large camping grounds surrounding the actual festival area. There are also a host of hotels and Inns providing room and board. Several “Metal” buses from larger cities (Hamburg, Lubach and points West) will be on hand to shuttle the masses. There is some bad news. If you haven’t bought your ticket for 2012, it’s too late as it’s already SOLD OUT! The 2009 festival set a sales record by selling out on 30 December 2008. All 80,000 tickets were sold over 200 days before the opening of the festival. However, this year, the 2012 edition broke that record by selling out on 29th November, a good 8 months before the opening of the festival. Something to think about for next year – get your tickets early. They go on sale in September almost a full year in advance. Since 2002, the Wacken Firefighters, the local volunteer fire department band, opens the festival.

Leading up to the festival, The Cutting Edge will be featuring stories on some of the artists playing this years Wacken 2012. They will be marked with a *Wacken 2012* link. The first in a series is Axel Rudi Pell. For more info on all things Wacken, visit the festival website site and check back here periodically for updates. Horns Up Metalheads!!!!

Website: Wacken Open Air Festival (W:O:A)