At Last BIG 4 Play UK Next Year

METALLICA, SLAYER, MEGADETH and ANTHRAX will headline the first night of next year’s U.K. installment of the Sonisphere festival, which will take place July 8-10, 2011. Saturday night headliner will be BIFFY CLYRO and Sunday’s festival closer is SLIPKNOT.

Commented METALLICA drummer Lars Ulrich: “As soon as the ‘Big Four’ gigs started rolling across Sonisphere festivals in Eastern Europe last summer, we all felt we were part of something special. The vibe within the bands was more than anyone had anticipated and the vibe with the fans was so next level, it completely blew our minds . . . there was no way this should not happen again!!! So I am beyond psyched that the first ‘Big Four’ show in Western Europe will take place on the hallowed grounds of Knebworth, where so many unique and special gigs have happened over the years.”

Last summer saw the live debut of the “Big Four” — as this collective of thrash legends are commonly known — marking what was possibly the most significant event in the history of metal. Fans all over Europe could barely contain their excitement, as over 500,000 metalheads bore witness to the show they thought they’d never see.

The “Big Four” fever did not stop at Europe, as fans the world over eagerly anticipated the possibility of seeing the historical show for themselves in their own countries. Such was the demand that a live cinecast of the Bulgarian show saw over 130,000 people turn out to local cinemas, with reports of mosh pits breaking out in movie theatres across the globe. The recently released DVD of the event, which features all four bands collaborating on a cover of DIAMOND HEAD‘s “Am I Evil?” as well as their individual sets, has only added fuel to the “Big Four” fire, with a frenzied demand for more performances in the countries not fortunate enough to play host last summer.

“There is simply no better venue for a European round two of the ‘Big Four’!!” METALLICA‘s Lars Ulrich says. “Put your dancing shoes on, this is gonna be fun!”

“Always excited to do ‘Big Four’ shows,” says SLAYER‘s Kerry King. “Now England is in line to be devastated by this heavy metal powerhouse! Can’t fucking wait!!!”

MEGADETH mainman Dave Mustaine states: “The ‘Big Four’ concerts are the most important, most exciting event to happen in the history of live concerts in our genre, and perhaps the entire music industry. I am glad to be a part of this enormous celebration of thrash, speed, and good ole heavy metal!”

“Oh, yeah!!!” proclaims ANTHRAX drummer Charlie Benante. “Here we come, England! The ‘Big Four’, BABY! Can’t wait to get metal thrashing mad for you thrashers!”

ANTHRAX bandmate, guitarist Scott Ian, concurs: “Merry early Xmas present for us… more ‘Big Four’ shows!!! The shows we did together with our brothers in METALLICA, SLAYER and MEGADETH were not only the high point of 2010, but also some of the best shows ANTHRAX have ever played. Getting to share this with our friends in the U.K. will be amazing.”

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