Exclusive: Monster Magnet Drop Off Psycho Fest 2022; Satyricon’s Status Unknown

Monster Magnet

Since relocating from the City of Angels to Sin City in 2016, Psycho Las Vegas continues to be the premier crossover music festival in the U.S., attracting heavy-rock bands, indie-pop luminaries, punk legends, rap royalty and even a few DJs for good measure. Levitate and Oblivion Access (both held in Austin) are close behind Psycho but aren’t yet running the asylum, so to speak.

Psycho features bulletproof lineups, organization of the highest caliber and stages close to hotel rooms where attendees can take a breather between bands. But the gala does have an Achilles’ heel: Invariably, a smattering of previously announced bands drop off the bill each year, usually but not exclusively limited to visa issues.

Time and space don’t allow for a recap of past years’ drama, but Psycho Las Vegas 2022 initially stoked excitement by announcing Mercyful Fate, Emperor, Mayhem, Satyricon, Watain, Wolves in the Throne Room, Samael, Boris, MGLA, Cirith Ungol, King Woman, Marissa Nadler, Bömbers and Year of No Light as the first wave of artists booked to play August 19-21 at Resorts World Las Vegas, the festival’s new location on the Strip.

That news was especially exciting for fans of Emperor, Mayhem, Satyricon and Watain, all of whom had bumped their planned 2021 appearances to this year’s lineup. While those names are some of black metal’s finest, a “second wave” announcement added a wide array of 73 more diverse artists, ballooning the lineup to a ridonkulous 120 bands as of yesterday.

Still, in light of past mishaps, as the fest nears, attendees are starting to gnaw on their black-painted fingernails once again to see if any bands will have to bail at this year’s installment of “America’s Rock and Roll Bacchanal.”

Psycho organizers deserve credit for communicating directly and transparently with fans about the status of Watain, a revered Swedish black-metal band. The FAQ section of Psycho Las Vegas’ website details that, while the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services approved Watain’s visa in January, it was later flagged and is currently under review by the Department of Homeland Security.

“We have spent several weeks calling our local U.S. Congress members and putting pressure on them to assist in pushing this approval process through,” Psycho organizers said on the website.

However, while Watain’s situation is public knowledge, there appear to be other booking problems lurking beneath the surface. The tour sections of the bands’ artist pages on Napalm Records’ website list Satyricon and Monster Magnet as poised to perform at Psycho, and the current festival poster features them as two of the highest-profile participants:

Psycho Las Vegas 2022 poster as of 6.3.22

However, the See Tickets page for Psycho doesn’t mention Satyricon or Monster Magnet. There doesn’t seem to be a legitimate list of Satyricon tour dates online; a link on the band’s Facebook page appears to be broken, as it directs to a site apparently related to a health-care company. Same goes for Monster Magnet: A tour-related link on their website leads to a broken Facebook page.

Psycho Fest organizers have not responded to requests for comment as of press time, but a representative for Napalm Records provided this exclusive comment to The Bad Penny earlier Friday: “Monster Magnet is not playing. Satyricon I do not have any information on at the moment.”

There’s also a wrinkle involving a third band: Wiegedood, a Belgian black-metal powerhouse that is part of (Psycho vets) Amenra’s Church of Ra collective.

A press release issued a month ago that listed the festival’s complete lineup included Wiegedood as one of the festival participants. The tour section of the band’s website similarly indicates they’re plotting to play Psycho this year.

That said, neither the current Psycho festival poster nor the See Tickets page for Psycho features any mention of Wiegedood.

A representative for Wiegedood did not respond to comment as of press time. Organizers for Psycho Las Vegas did not respond to requests for comment regarding Monster Magnet, Satyricon or Wiegedood as of press time.

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