It feels as if it were only yesterday that we were all shacked up in tents in the middle of never-ending fields, nursing hangovers, sweating out comedowns, drinking copious amounts of alcohol, eating food far removed from your usual diet, partying till the early hours, slumming it down-and-dirty style, and most importantly: enjoying bloody good music.

Unfortunately, festival season closed its doors back in August for yet another year and it won’t be till June that the majors open their fields up for us once again. Fear not though, for Catton Hall’s heavy metal residents, Bloodstock Open Air, have been curating band-by-band a mammoth line-up for next year’s event – following this year’s history-making sell-out edition – and they’re only six bands in!

Having announced French technical-death metal maestros Gojira and symphonic-metal legends Nightwish as headliners following German thrash heavyweights Kreator’s special guest set at this year’s festival, they recently announced NWOBHM pioneers Judas Priest as the final headliner, a band the Bloodstock faithful have been pining after for years.

If that wasn’t enough, they’ve gone and added three more bands to the fiery feast of balls-to-the-wall metal.

Black metal legends Emperor, in a much sought-after UK performance – and an exclusive no less – will perform their celebratory twentieth anniversary set of their sophomore spectacular, the hauntingly morbid Anthems To The Welkin At Dusk. All this, and its right before Priest. Yep, Emperor are heading up that special guest slot before Priest, so you’ll be guaranteed your neck muscles will be feeling it early on. Thus Spake The Nightspirit live is having us here at BG HQ feeling a little too excited if you get what we mean.

Taking up a main stage slot will be none other than the down-right dastardly DevilDriver, who have rightfully earned the title of circle pit kings. Having torn Download Festival’s second stage a new one this year, classics like Clouds Over California and I Could Care Less will reign supreme. Frontman Dez Fafara is pretty stoked too:

“We couldn’t be more fucking ready to bring the heavy and get the whole festival moving!  We are thankful for the opportunity and can’t wait to see everyone there!  Get ready to get the fuck in the pit!”

Sonic terrorists Nails tie up the announcement, scoring themselves a Ronnie James Dio main stage slot, another well-played UK exclusive from Bloodstock. If you’re one of those hardcore nutters who love nothing more than getting their bodies bruised and broken all weekend long at Bloodstock – and we know you exist, trust us – these guys are the act announced for you.

With just six acts announced and the lineup already looking insane, other metal festivals are going to have to be on their toes to compete.

Who would you like to see at Bloodstock in 2018? Hit us in the comments below!

Bloodstock takes place at Catton Hall on the 9th-12th August 2018. Raise your horns.

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