Management of Mayhem fest (Chicago) for 2015 was extremely unprofessional and unimpressive. We arrived and they didn’t have our media credentials correct. Me thinking all would be ok, I didn’t print the approval letter. My son reminded me that this needs to be done for every show. We were finally able to get the media credential situation resolved and we made our way to the media area to setup. Well, it turns out there wasn’t a designated media area; there is no wi-fi, interview area, or backstage photography. Trying to be creative, we approached bands for interviews, however, they indicated they were not allowed to take media personnel backstage for interviews or they (the band) would be asked to leave the festival. So from an interview perspective, it was very disappointing. We were able to capture some pretty cool pictures though.
Asgard was not given main stage access, despite being the only radio station covering the Chicago festival, however, the bands on the second stage were still killer. Code Orange tore shit up. They were outstanding and played to the crowed. Shattered Sun was another great act along with Sworn In and Sister Sin. Thy Art Is Murder was a band I really never got to see, April Baggins covered their show in Detroit late last year, but I, personally had not heard much of them but holy shit, they did not disappoint.
I had a chance to speak to the guys from Jungle Rot during their scheduled meet and greet but due to the media restrictions, was not able to get an official interview from them. I enjoyed their set and they were great people. Have you haven’t heard them, you should really check them out.
The final band on the second stage was Whitechapel. They are so fuckin’ hard and heavy. The crowd went crazy when they started their set. I play them on Asgard regularly but their live performance is outstanding. They really know how to work a crowd. They played to every single fan out there.
Overall, the bands made it worth being there but the management of the festival was very poor and it was quite obvious from a media perspective why Mayhem won’t be around any longer. It is disappointing to see one of the few rock festivals, specifically metal festivals, perish but sometimes it is just time to put Old Yeller out of his misery, despite our love of the music. RIP Mayhem.