Devilstone Open Air - Religious Community Upset After Mayhem's Performance

Lithuanian metal music festival Devilstone Open Air 2010 - which took place last July in the little town of Anyksciai - has gained a serious amount of criticism from the religious community. The Prosecution Service even started a pre-investigation whether or not the festival has provoked religious disunion.

According to an official press release, the festival has been highly acclaimed by its target fans and the broad society... except for the religious community of the town. Recently a group of local Catholics and the Dean of the local church publicly expressed their opponent attitude towards the festival. These people even initiated a pre-trial investigation accusing the festival and/or one of the festival's headliners Mayhem of provoking religious disunion.

Local Catholics and the Dean declare their religious feelings have been insulted as they witnessed the photos of the band's performance where Mayhem front-man Attila Csihar wore something similar to a cassock, had an inverted cross, bloody mask and a gallows loop.

The Dean applied to the Ministry of Justice which in turn forwarded the case back to the local Prosecution Service of Anyksciai. The pre-trial investigation is in the process and the organizers of the festival are scheduled to express their statement next week.

In the meanwhile such unprecedented case has been highlighted by Lithuanian media and is being hastily discussed by the society. The majority express their negative reaction to the initiators of the case, comparing the present situation with the middle ages. On the other side a minority defends the Dean and the religious community, stating that the festival and its content are harmful for people's moral.

The organizer of the festival - ALT events - justifies the festival, the band and the festival's nature, as the aim of it is not to provoke disunity among religious, national, racial, ethnic or any other groups of people. The organizer stands for the viewpoint that even the most extreme and radical shows on stage should be considered as art of performance; the freedom of artistic expression should not be restrained, was it black metal music or a piece of contemporary art.

It is expected that such unwanted confrontation between the festival and religious institution would not determine the end of festival's existence. The relation with local authorities of the church has been complicated since the debut of the festival in 2009, when the Dean aimed to ban the festival for its title "Devilstone" and for its last year's headliner Sepultura, which, according to the Dean, was a Satanic band.

Devilstone Open Air occurred for the second time this year in Anyksciai, was headlined by Norwegian band Mayhem, Sweden's Grave and Germany's Tankard, featured by 15 more bands from all over Europe, and held an audience of about 1500 people.

Band profile: Mayhem
Event: Devilstone Open Air
Posted: 04.09.2010 by Thryce

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Comments: 31   Visited by: 241 users
15.10.2010 - 17:27
Sepultura satanic?and next they will say slipknot is satanic.

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