Wacken is currently doing a tedious one-band-a-day reveal of the 2010 lineup, going in to an alleged awesome super-secret band on the 25th. The lineup, so far, is good stuff for those who are making 2010 their first Wacken, or those who weren't there in 2007 (when Cannibal Corpse followed Immortal), or those who don't have to budget in airfare, but for me, it's still up in the air.
Arch Enemy - could be decent, would be the first time I hear them with proper sound if the PA doesn't fuck up again
Caliban - no interest
Cannibal Corpse - see below
Corvus Corax - interesting especially since I slept through their '05 set
Apo - like the 5th year in a row, when are people going to start bitching about them being the new Saxon?
Edguy - cool if their new album isn't as crap as Tinnitus
Endstille - good enough, though they just played last year
Ghost Brigade - no interest, their demo sucked
Immortal - good, but after '07 not a cross-oceans draw
Orden Ogan - never heard of
Stratovarius - mildly interesting, but more rubbernecking than actual draw
The Devil's Blood - interesting but see below
U.D.O. - again, rubbernecker interest; I saw Udo with Accept here five years ago, and doubt he'll do better with more years under his belt and worse material
W.A.S.P. (not on the page, but they're the answer to the quiz, so watch for tomorrow) - decent
All in all, pretty good, but you can understand why I don't have a ticket yet. The case is building, but I need to see at least two from the set of (Sodom, Kreator, Hypocrisy, Slayer, Necrophagist, (some New England band I know people from)) to push this to a must -- and should Metallica be announced, that'll push the calculation significantly in the other direction.
The quiz answers, so far, have produced the following string as a clue to the secret band:
No ideas so far, especially since each unique letter may stand for multiple letters in the band name. Also, no time to run an anagram generator and check the results against Metal-Archives.
Party.San bill, so far. Most of the bands I'm actually interested to see at Wacken, plus Aura Noir, Manegarm in the conditions that were so peak for Moonsorrow this past year, and Watain in a context with absolutely no limits (as long as they don't suddenly go NSBM). Hell yes. More draw on fewer announced already; get a few more in, and this will be the main reason to go over.
Summer Breeze is also looking promising. This will mean crossing the old East-West border (as advised against by Sturmi at Party.San last year, who spent 7 hours on local trains going from Bavaria to Thuringia to save money), but even that can be an adventure as well. The guide for doing interior German festivals -- as opposed to Wacken, where you can practically get off the plane and back without having to read a word in German -- will be along sometime this winter, but will probably get tweaked based on these results if I end up doing that this summer.