Following the hugely successful European Metal Festival Alliance, Bloodstock organisers have announced their replacement Saturday night headliner for 2021’s event! Replacing the mighty Behemoth, the legendary Mercyful Fate will now headline the Ronnie James Dio main stage, with Norwegian symphonic black metal heavyweghts Dimmu Borgir joining them as Special Guests.

The King Diamond-fronted, seminal black metal icons reformed in 2019 after a lengthy hiatus. They were due to play their first shows in over 20 years this summer (with the exception of a special one-off set at Metallica’s 30th Anniversary San Francisco show in 2011), but with everything on hold in 2020, they will make their appearance on the 2021 Bloodstock bill, in a UK exclusive performance.

As King Diamond himself declares, “It is with sinister pleasure Mercyful Fate will finally bring the Devil himself to Bloodstock Summer ‘21. We cannot wait and neither can he. It’s gonna be dark as Hell.”

Dimmu Borgir step into the coveted Saturday special guest slot. Having been forced to cancel their slot in 2019 due to illness the Norwegian symphonic black metallers can make up for it in 2021. The band confirm, “UK! After our triumphant London show this January, we will be back at your shores next year. See you at BLOODSTOCK in August 2021!”

Dimmu Borgir are currently working on their eleventh studio album which may well see the light of day before the festival/

Standard weekend tickets for the extended, now 5-day event in 2021 were due to increase by £10 on 10th August 2020 to £155 (+ booking fees). However, the government has confirmed that festivals are included in the reduced 5% VAT rate for the hospitality & leisure industries, so Bloodstock will be freezing their standard weekend price at £145 until 13th January 2021, at which time the 2021 price increase comes into effect. In addition, to recognise the difficult financial situation that some fans may find themselves in due to the pandemic, BLOODSTOCK has launched an extended 6-month installment plan, allowing customers to spread payments across smaller installments. Fans can sign up to the scheme at the online ticket store any time before 31st August 2020, and payments will be debited as follows; £31.17 (includes £7 booking fee) immediately upon sign up, then monthly payments of £24.17 will debit your account on 5th Sept, 5th Oct, 5th Nov, and 5th Dec, with the final payment of £27.65 (includes £3.50 postage) on 5th Jan 2021.

While you’re waiting for 2021, Bloodstock has added extensive content on its YouTube Channel to keep fans entertained at home, showcasing all manner of headbangin’ tracks and even full sets from previous years. Examples include Gojira’s incredible headline set in 2016, Amon Amarth’s pyro-laden 2017 visit, Wednesday 13’s spooktacular BOA debut and Lamb of God steaming through ‘Walk With Me In Hell’ back in 2013. There’s so much more besides, explore the channel at your leisure.

BLOODSTOCK’s 2021 other main stage headliners include Devin Townsend (Friday), Judas Priest (Sunday), Philip H. Anselmo & The Illegals, Skindred, Paradise Lost, Life Of Agony, Bury Tomorrow, Black Dahlia Murder, Diamond Head, Jinjer, Vio-lence, Sacred Reich, Gloryhammer, Dark Tranquillity, Butcher Babies, Cattle Decapitation, Bloodywood, Memoriam, Ramage Inc, Green Lung, Conjurer, Orange Goblin, The Night Flight Orchestra, Unleash The Archers, Saxon, Sylosis, Toxic Holocaust, Winterfylleth, Nekrogoblikon, The Crawling, Raised By Owls, Anakim, Acid Reign, Svalbard, Soen, Dog Tired, Bailer, Blasphemer, Black Tongue, Liberty Lies, Pist and Sharks In Your Mouth so far confirmed with more bands performing across the weekend still to be announced.

Besides standard weekend tickets, child tickets and parking tickets for 2021’s event are also available now at the ticket store. A limited number of day tickets will go on sale on September 1st – sign up for a free reminder here. VIP and campervan tickets for 2021 are already sold out.

Bloodstock 2021 takes place at Catton Park, Derbyshire from 11th-15th August 2021. For more info, click to buy tickets.

Recently we spoke to Bloodstock’s very own Vicky Hungerford about the cancellation of the 2020 event, festivals in 2021 and the future of Bloodstock. Read what Vicky had to say here.

Artwork for Bloodstock Festival 2021

I have an unhealthy obsession with bad horror movies, the song Wanted Dead Or Alive and crap British game shows. I do this not because of the sex, drugs and rock 'n' roll lifestyle it affords me but more because it gives me an excuse to listen to bands that sound like hippos mating.