Australia's Soundwave Festival Has 'Ended,' Promoter Announces

Travis Shinn

The music has officially stopped for Soundwave, one of Australia's biggest festivals. 

The rock and metal leaning-fest has been canceled just five weeks out from the 2016 edition, with its promoter AJ Maddah citing “poor ticket sales.” The fest was slated to roll into Australia’s three biggest cities (Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane) in late January, with headliners including Disturbed, the Prodigy and Deftones

Soundwave 2017 Fest Won't Happen, Promoter Says

Maddah tweeted, “I am devastated to have to announce the cancellation of Soundwave 16 due to poor ticket sales. I am very sorry. I tried my best. #SW16”

Maddah’s announcement, which was posted late Thursday afternoon local time, follows the promoter’s disclosure that his event wouldn't take place in 2017. He’s gone one step further and suggested it's the end proper for his traveling annual fest. 

"Thank you to all the fans, bands and people who supported the event for the last 12 years. i wish we could have ended it on a better note," he added. Maddah also tweeted Thursday that he'd tried -- and failed -- to reunite Rage Against the Machine for next year's Soundwave run.

The maverick concert promoter oversaw the expansion of Soundwave from a single date in Perth back in 2004 into a multi-date juggernaut which, at its peak sold roughly 280,000 tickets and visited five cities.

If Soundwave has struggled to sell tickets, it's not the only one. Touring behemoths Big Day Out and Future Music Festival are no longer operating, while the Harvest (once part of Maddah’s portfolio), Peats Ridge, Homebake and Pyramid Rock brands have all disappeared from the summer program in recent times.

The cancelation of Soundwave is a shock, but not unexpected. First, Bring Me The Horizon had announced it was "awaiting some requested info & hope to 100% confirm our involvement this week," while Maddah revealed yesterday he and the ticketing agency Eventopia were at odds over the early release of funds for two of the performers (including BMTH).

Maddah, a prolific user of social media, responded to a question on Twitter earlier in the week with a typically candid opinion on Soundwave's prospects for a run in 2017. "Definitely no SW17," he wrote. "It's a lot of hard work, stress & risk in return for which we get hate & stupidity #OverIt."