Clear your calendars, Metallica fans. And... indie rock fans! In an announcement on their site this afternoon, the metal titans confirmed that they'll be hosting a festival, dubbed Orion, on June 22 and 23 at Bader Field in Atlantic City, New Jersey. Joining James, Lars, Kirk, and Robert will be a stunningly diverse lineup including Arctic Monkeys, Modest Mouse, the Gaslight Anthem, Best Coast, and many more. Metallica, who will close both nights, will play 1991's landmark Black Album and 1984's Ride the Lightning albums in their entirety. Two-day general admission tickets are priced at $125. You can see the full lineup and find out more information about the festival at orionmusicandmore.com.
The festival is only the most recent big news in what's been an exceptionally busy period for the band. In December, the San Francisco quartet celebrated their 30th anniversary with a hometown show. At the tail-end of summer, Metallica joined up with the other members of the thrash metal Big 4 — Anthrax, Megadeth, and Slayer — for a series of concerts. And, of course, there was the much-discussed Lulu.
There's also an officially-sanctioned two-volume biography in the works.
The new festival is far from the first time that the band has participated in a U.S. multi-act extravaganza of this sort. Most famously, they harshed many a mellow at Bonnaroo in 1998, and brought their then-newly trimmed coifs to Lollapalooza in 1996.
During an interview aired immediately after the announcement, James and Co. explained that Orion was named in honor of the band's late bassist Cliff Burton. "Orion" is also the name of a Burton-led instrumental song from 1986's greatest-metal-album-of-all-time album contender Master of Puppets.
We don't know how it's gonna work," said frontman James Hetfield during the interview, "but it's gonna be fun."
VIP ticket pre-sale starts on February 8. Good luck!