This year’s Rockstar Energy Drink Mayhem Festival could very well turn out to be the event’s last, if the latest couple of social-media posts by Mayhem co-founder John Reese are anything to go by.
The 2015 edition of Mayhem kicked off on June 26 in Chula Vista, California and wrapped last night (Sunday, August 2) in Dallas, Texas.
SLAYER was this year’s Mayhem headliner, but the main-stage lineup lacked the second big headliner of previous years. Past lineups have paired the likes of AVENGED SEVENFOLD and KORN, DISTURBED and GODSMACK or ROB ZOMBIE and FIVE FINGER DEATH PUNCH. This year, SLAYER was joined by KING DIAMOND, HELLYEAH and THE DEVIL WEARS PRADA. In addition, this summer’s Mayhem Festival has shrunk from four stages to two, and the overall lineup has been trimmed by about half a dozen bands.
Writing on his Facebook page, Reese said: “After spending eight calendar years of passion and one full year of my life on the road with the festival, tonight is a very emotional night.
“All I know is we have all tried our damned hardest to make Mayhem a home for artists, a platform for bands to increase their fan base and a place where people feel welcomed.
“Thank you to every single band who have performed and the amazing Mayhem crew people who have ever been out with us.
“With every end, there is a new beginning.”
Reese also posted a photo of himself with King Diamond along with the caption: “So amazing to have THE KING on the last Mayhem evah. What a class act.”
The 2015 Mayhem Festival generated controversy earlier in the summer after festival co-founder Kevin Lyman blamed the event’s low ticket sales on the fact that metal has failed to produce new and younger headlining bands, adding that “metal got gray, bald and fat” and “chased girls away.”
SLAYER guitarist Kerry King responded by saying that the problem with this summer’s event lay not so much with the metal bands themselves but with the way the festival was booked.
“At the end of the day, what I think happened to Mayhem was that they waited too late in the game to get the talent they needed to pull it off correctly,” Kerry said. “Because what happens is, people get booked up so early these days that it seems like all the bands that could have made this more of a success are playing in Europe now instead of being on a U.S. festival. It just made the talent pool less than it could be.”