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Wacken Metal Battle USA: Independent Metal Bands Can Sign Up Now!


Wacken Metal Battle USA is proud to announce its return in 2022 after two years of missed battles across America due to the Covid pandemic.

For its last three years (2017-2019), Wacken Metal Battle USA has hosted battles across the country to send one independent metal band to perform at the world’s largest metal festival, Wacken Open Air, in Wacken, Germany. 2019 saw the festival celebrate its 30th anniversary, but due to Covid, the 2020 and 2021 editions were both canceled.

As the metal community regains its strength, Wacken Open Air 2022 will be the 31st edition of the festival and will be held from August 4th to 6th. The 2022 event is already sold out with a line-up that includes Slipknot, Till Lindemann (Rammstein), Judas Priest, Lacuna Coil, Danko Jones, Gwar, Death Angel, Tarja, and many more. Details here.

For over a decade at Wacken Open Air, independent metal bands from around the globe have been performing in front of thousands and competing against one another for one to be crowned champion of the international battle at the festival along with winning multiple prizes. For 2022, Wacken Metal Battle USA is returning to America and will be hosting qualifying rounds in select cities across the nation.

Current cities confirmed for 2022 battles are the following:
Los Angeles, CA
San Diego, CA
Orange County, CA
Sacramento, CA
Oakland, CA
San Francisco, CA
Portland, OR
Seattle, WA
Phoenix, AZ
Tucson, AZ
Tampa Bay, FL
Atlanta, GA
Las Vegas, NV
Austin, TX
Corpus Christi, TX
Dallas, TX
Houston, TX
Lubbock, TX
San Antonio, TX
El Paso, TX
Akron, OH

Battle Submissions:
Applications for 2022 are now open and end on November 14, 2021 at 11:59PM PST. Bands interested in participating in 2022 battles can apply at the following link:

Concert promoters interested in hosting a Wacken battle in their city can apply at this link:

How it works:
Participating cities will host qualifying rounds plus a city final organized by a local city concert promoter where one band will move forward to the American national final (date and city to be determined). The winner of the national final will move on to perform at Wacken Open Air 2022 and compete against the winners of 29 other countries in a final global battle.  All bands will be judged during battle rounds by respected local music industry representatives.

Rules for participation:

2019’s national final was hosted in Los Angeles, CA and featured Dissentience (Winners, East Coast), Monarch (Winners, West Coast), Nahaya (Winners, Texas), Toxic Ruin (Winners, Chicago), Violence System (Winners, Atlanta) whom were selected from over a hundred bands that participated in battles across the USA. The national final battle was Judged by a panel of metal industry that consisted of Alex Distefano (LA Weekly), Marco Barbieri (M-Theory Audio) and DJ Will (KNAC.COM).

2019 – WMBU Winner
Monarch (San Diego, CA)
Video – Live at Wacken 2019 here.

2018 – WMBU Winner

2017 – WMBU Winner
CORPSE HOARDER (Philadelphia, PA)Video – Live at Wacken 2017 here.

For more info:

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