Sonisphere Metal Festival Canceled Over Weak Lineup Concerns

John McMurtrie
Iron Maiden

The organizers of U.K. heavy metal festival Sonsiphere have announced that this year's event will not be going ahead due to a crowded summer calendar restricting their ability to secure a strong enough lineup.

Sonisphere Metal Fest Canceled Due to 'Challenging Year'

"Team Sonisphere reluctantly confirm that Sonisphere will not take place in the U.K. in 2015," a statement on the Sonisphere website reads.
 
"We've been working hard to get a lineup that we felt was good enough, but also on a weekend which would avoid other events that we know rock fans would want to support. Unfortunately our last irons in the fire have just been extinguished and it's clear that we won't be in a position to run the event this year. We've said in the past that Sonisphere will only go ahead if we feel it is going to be good enough and that hasn't changed."
 
Last year's event took place July 4-6 in the historic grounds of Knebworth Park in Hertfordshire and was headlined by The Prodigy, Iron Maiden and Metallica.
 
Limp Bizkit, Deftones, Alice in Chains, Frank Turner, Mastodon, HIM, Slayer and Dropkick Murphys also performed at the three-day festival, which is operated by London-based tour and festival promoters Kilimanjaro Live.

No acts had so far been confirmed for the 2015 event.
 
The first edition of Sonisphere took place in 2009 and consisted of a series of one-day festivals staged across Europe, culminating in a two-day event at Knebworth Park headlined by Metallica and Linkin Park.
 
The touring festival returned in 2010 and 2011, although 2012 saw a cancellation of the U.K. leg -- scheduled to be headlined by Kiss, Queen with Adam Lambert and Faith No More -- due to what organizers called "a very challenging year."
 
No Sonisphere was staged in 2013 with last year's return to Knebworth Park staged to mark "40 Years of Rock Music" at the iconic grounds.
 
Although this year won't see Sonisphere returning to the U.K., organizers say that they plan to come back in 2016.
 
This summer will, meanwhile, see Muse headline the Switzerland leg of Sonisphere, which is scheduled to take place June 6. The Sonisphere website also lists an Italian leg due to take place June 2, although no further information is provided.

A spokesperson for Kilimanjaro Live could not be reached at press time.