Sonisphere announce ten new bands plus comedy stage

Now in it’s second year, with a line up boasting exclusive performances from IRON MAIDEN, RAMMSTEIN, MÖTLEY CRÜE and SLAYER plus many more amazing acts who you won’t catch at any other festival this year - SONISPHERE KNEBWORTH has today announced its first comedy line-up ever. Inspired by discussion with ticket-holders and forum users, the comedy section will take place in BOHEMIA on the Saturday and Sunday, providing hilarious relief from the serious business of rocking out to the awesome bands on offer. With comedians rapidly becoming the new rock stars, SONISPHERE is pleased to announce the first of some of the biggest names in the business - with more exciting names to be announced in the coming weeks - making the £132.50 weekend ticket price - which unlike most festivals carries NO BOOKING FEE - the best value for money out there.

Set to be SONISPHERE’s master of mirth, the truly exceptional Kiwi JARRED CHRISTMAS has been confirmed to compere the comedy over the festival’s three days. Having already scooped a ‘Best Compere’ gong from this year’s Chortle Awards, Jarred’s dynamic onstage persona coupled with his ability to improvise and roll with anything that’s thrown at him have previously seen him appear in the cult TV smash ‘Flight of the Conchords’ alongside Brett and Germaine.

Hot on Jarred’s heels is Portsmouth-born vegan, anarchist, transvestite, occult heavy metal comedian-come-musician-writer extraordinaire ANDREW O’NEILL. Having broken onto the stand-up circuit via the cult Laughing Horse Camden venue, Andrew has since gone on to perform in comedy clubs and theatres throughout the UK and abroad, conduct comedy tours of Jack the Ripper murder sites and regularly appears on radio and television. In 2009 Andrew was nominated for the Chortle Awards’ Breakthrough Act, and has received rave reviews across the press, and accolades from some of comedy’s legends, including Steve Coogan, who considered Andrew “so funny I put him in my new TV show”.

Third to be confirmed for Sonisphere Knebworth is the self-proclaimed ‘rock n’ roll nerd’, TIM MINCHIN, whose star has been on a meteoric ascent since his break out show, Dark Side, at the Melbourne International Comedy Festival in 2005. With his unique brand of multi-disciplined hilarity, Tim Minchin is raising the bar on live comedy. What sets Tim apart from his peers is his striking ability to serve up comedy through live music and song. Wildly unorthodox, brilliantly non-traditional and vividly unique, his acclaimed act not only offers quick-witted observations and rapid-fire delivery, but also the striking sound of an accomplished pianist…albeit a barefoot one. Tim has become instantly recognisable through stints on TV shows including Never Mind The Buzzcocks, The World Stands Up, Comedy Cuts and Spicks and Specks.

Bringing up the rear of SONISPHERE KNEBWORTH’S first comedy announcement is the undisputed Admiral Lord Major of British comedy SEAN HUGHES. Sean first become a fixture on the comedy circuit back in 1987 when he began appearing at the famous Comedy Store before going on to win the prestigious Perrier Comedy Award for his show ‘A One Night Stand With Sean Hughes’. Sean’s TV credits, which span over a decade, include a brilliant stint as a team captain on cult TV show Never Mind The Buzzcocks between 1996 and 2002. Sean was also a close friend of the late American comedian Bill Hicks. Hughes wrote the foreword to Cynthia True's biography, “American Scream: The Bill Hicks Story”. Often compared to one another, Hughes wrote about Hicks, "being a genius is a heavy burden and he's the only one I'm ever likely to meet. I still miss you Bill."

SONISPHERE has also confirmed another ten acts for this year’s line up.

First up, SOULFLY will be flying in from the US to lay waste to the SATURN stage. Lead by MAX CAVALERA - one of the most instantly recognisable faces in metal - the tribal metallers are currently gearing up to release their seventh full length, OMEN. MAX took time out to tell us:

"Soulfly is coming to fuck shit up! I can't wait to play the new stuff for you. Bring da shit, UK!!!!"

One of the most exciting and lively bands out there, SOULFLY’s ability to get all in attendance jumping up and down like loons will be proved once again as they throw down groove-laden metal classics such as “Bleed”, “Back To The Primitive”, “Prophecy” and “Inner Spirit” - and maybe a couple of covers for good measure…

With swords in hands and war-paint on face, Viking Metal heroes TURISAS will be sailing the longboat from Finland to sound the call to arms at KNEBWORTH this summer. With their symphonic, epic war hymns and sense of fun, TURISAS are a unique and perfect addition to the festival, and we look forward to raising our tankards to the likes of “Battle Metal” and their genius cover of Boney M’s “Rasputin”.

Flying in from Los Angeles, California, BIGELF bring their psychedelic mix of prog, metal and rock to SONISPHERE. Creating a stir and amassing fans earlier this year on the Progressive Nations tour, BIGELF look set to breakthrough in a big way - don’t miss their set at this rare UK festival appearance.

POLAR BEAR CLUB join the awesome SONISPHERE line up, coming in fresh off the Vans Warped Tour. “I can't wait to play Sonisphere!” shouts frontman JIMMY STADT. “Not every band can tell their friends they've played with Iron Maiden!” If you caught the New York mentalists brandishing their melodic brand of hardcore last year with Frank Turner and Gaslight Anthem, or making a name for themselves at Reading & Leeds, you’ll know what the fuss is about - if not, make sure you catch them at SONISPHERE this summer.

Having rocked the JAGERMEISTER STAGE so hard at last year’s SONISPHERE, it would seem criminal for all in attendance this year to have to miss out, so it’s with great excitement we confirm the return of UK rockers HEAVEN’S BASEMENT to KNEBWORTH. In the past 12 months, HEAVEN’S BASEMENT have toured with the likes of Buckcherry, Shinedown, Papa Roach, Theory Of A Deadman and Dear Superstar, securing their place as a leading force in the UK rock scene. Don’t miss this awesome act as they make their way through future classics such as “Can’t Let Go”, “Executioner’s Day” and “Tear Your Heart Out”. Says drummer CHRIS RIVERS:

“We can't wait to get back to Sonisphere this year, the last time we played the Jager stage it was insane in everyway, great crowd, sun, plenty of alcohol and loud rock n' roll! This year will be even better cos we'll get the chance to kick the shit out of the Bohemia stage! See you all at Knebworth!”

Currently working on their third album, DELAIN take time out make their first ever UK festival appearance at SONISPHERE this summer. Having captivated audiences across Europe with their spellbinding symphonic metal, the Dutch four piece’s profile of late has risen sharply with the release of last year’s “April Rain” via Roadrunner Records, and show’s no sign of slowing down anytime soon. Says lead singer CHARLOTTE WESSELS:

“We're very much looking forward to rocking Sonisphere 2010, one of the coolest festivals around! It's a great opportunity to come back and play for our UK fans.”

Coming all the way from Perth, Australia, prog-lined alternative Rockers KARNIVOOL will be showing the UK why in their homeland they’ve secured numerous Australian Music Industry Awards and a Number 2 album in the Australian charts. Lead singer IAN KENNY claims

“Karnivool is pumped like an eighties Reebok sneaker about being given the opportunity to tear Knebworth a new blow hole this year at Sonisphere.. Not so pumped about the 22 hour flight we need to take to get to the gig..nevertheless this years line up is a cracker and we're glad to be a part of it...”

A mesh of alternative and metal with a heavy prog flavour, KARNIVOOL caught the attention of the UK music press and fans alike during last year’s tour with Skindred - find out why at this, their first and ONLY UK festival appearance.

THE EIGHTIES MATCHBOX B-LINE DISASTER make a very welcome appearance at SONISPHERE this summer. Having earned a reputation for manic, in your face live shows through various tours - including support slots with Queens Of The Stone Age and System Of a Down who both personally invited the band to perform with them - and armed with a catalogue of hits including five Top 40 singles, these Barmy Brightonians promise to deliver an unforgettable set at KNEBWORTH.

Swedish melodic doomsters KATATONIA will be flying in from Stockholm to cast a dark shadow over the summer sun. One of the forerunners of the death/doom genre, over the years KATAONIA have honed and developed their sound, with more recent offerings seeing the band becoming more melodic and slightly easier on the year, but still retaining their moody atmospherics.

Lastly, it’s an honour to confirm the addition of THE UNION to this year’s line-up. Formed by LUKE MORLEY, guitarist of the legendary THUNDER - who played their final show at last year’s SONISPHERE - the band have recently completed their first UK tour, and are looking forward to rocking the masses at KNEBWORTH. Says LUKE MORLEY:

'It's fantastic to be returning to Sonisphere with The Union a year after Thunder's last UK show. Both Pete and I are really excited at the prospect of playing such a prestigious festival so soon in our brief history. We can't wait!!'

Watch this space for more acts and a host of comedy still TBA

SONISPHERE takes place at KNEBWORTH HOUSE July 30th - August 1st 2010

Tickets for SONISPHERE KNEBWORTH are on sale now at www.sonispherefestivals.com - with a full weekend ticket going for just £132.50, no booking fee and a host of exclusive performances there is no better value for UK Festival Fans this summer!

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