Riot erupts after Slipknot and Evanescence cancel Knotfest Mexico sets over safety concerns

Knotfest Mexico devolved into a riot on Saturday when Slipknot and Evanescence were forced to cancel their sets. A broken barricade at the Mexico City fest was blamed for the cancellation, leading fans to torch Evanescence’s drum set and wreak havoc on both bands’ equipment.

The lineup for Knotfest Mexico also included Godsmack, Bullet for My Valentine,  Papa Roach, and many more acts. While most of the bands were able to perform, the barricade reportedly was pushed down during Behemoth’s set. Apparently, organizers were unable to fix the barricade, and had to cancel the Evanescence and Slipknot sets over safety concerns.

Upon hearing the cancellation announcement, fans stormed the stage, damaging Evanescence and Slipknot’s equipment, which had already been set up in anticipation of the bands’ performances. Video shows the wild scene, with thousands of fans rushing through the grounds, and a few of them lighting Evanescence’s drum set up in flames.

Slipknot addressed the cancellation with the following message on Twitter:

“Because of a broken barricade and failed attempts to fix it, Slipknot were forced to cancel our performance last night. Safety — especially the safety of our fans and fellow bands — is priority number one. We apologize profusely and hope you all understand. If anything were to happen to any of you, we wouldn’t forgive ourselves. Also, if we could have fixed the barricade correctly, we would have gone on stage. Again, we hope you all understand and we will try to make it up to you as soon as we can.”

Evanescence issued a video message with singer Amy Lee stating the following:

“Mexico City, we are so, so disappointed that we didn’t get our chance to play for you tonight at Knotfest. The last couple of bands didn’t get to play because of a safety issue with the barricades and it wasn’t something that could be fixed. We are so sorry. We love you so much. We were waiting there, just like you, hoping that we would get our chance, but it didn’t work out tonight. I don’t know how, but somehow we are going to make it up to you. We love you so much. We’ll see you next time.”

Today, Evanescence followed up with another statement via Facebook, addressing the violence that ensued at the festival:

“Even though we are devastated by the destruction of our instruments and gear, we do not see the violent end to last night as a representation of our Mexican fans, or the Mexican people. 50,000 people were there, and sadly a handful of them turned to anger and violence after the cancellation. You have shown us an incredible amount of love from the very beginning, and we will always come back for you.

Knotfest Mexico had teamed up with ForceFest for a full weekend of metal and hard rock on the same grounds. ForceFest — featuring Rob Zombie, In Flames, Accept, Testament, and more — is still scheduled to take place today (December 1st).

Slipknot had considered playing a set today during ForceFest to make up for missing the set last night at Knotfest, but announced this afternoon that some of their equipment was too damaged, making it impossible for them to perform. “We had hoped to be able to perform today [Sunday], but regrettably, a situation arose onstage after the cancellation that damaged or destroyed gear that would have been necessary to play,” read the band’s new statement.

See video of the rioting, as well as tweets from Slipknot and Evanescence, below.