Rockstar Energy Mayhem Festival

You've probably noticed: There are a lot of festivals. It doesn't matter that not all are rousing successes (look at the rampant cancellation of dates for the reborn Lilith Fair, which was once upon a time also scheduled to come to Center this week). Each summer, there seem to be more of them, regardless of the economic climate or what seems to be a complete lack of demonstrated need.

The Mayhem Festival, though, actually does serve a purpose. Filling the heavy metal void left by the Ozzfest, the Mayhem Festival started in 2008, founded by Warped Tour mastermind Kevin Lyman and his partner John Reese and, unsurprisingly, sponsored by Rockstar Energy Drink. Even though it's one of the newer festivals, the headliners are mostly a bunch of dudes who have been around since before Ozzfest started: Korn, Rob Zombie and Lamb of God. Each of these storied metal acts has been around for years—and each has a new album to tout.

Unfortunately, it's a bit of a drop-off after that. Five Finger Death Punch is the next biggest name on the bill, and they formed in 2005—the same year Zombie turned 40. Still, in a genre dominated by (often quite literally) grizzled veterans, it's refreshing to see relative newcomers holding their own, despite the troubling message in the title of their latest album, War Is the Answer.


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