My preferred time-wasting website, Flavorwire, posted an article about the myth of critical distance in literature yesterday. I read that article and thought: “you think the New York Times has it bad?” Many writers pull double time at multiple blogs while participating in our own musical projects, while sometimes musicians become well-known writers themselves. If we refer to the metal community at large as a family, then it’s an incestuous one, which makes Maryland Deathfest the closest thing to a family reunion the United States metal community has.

This year marks the 13th installment of the beloved (and sometimes maligned) institution, which routinely supplies some of the only opportunities extreme music enthusiasts in this hemisphere have to see bands with fan bases too small to sustain them on large US tours. To name a few of this year’s highlights:the first live performance by Agoraphobic Nosebleed; a performance by Arcturus; Amorphis playing their seminal album Tales from the Thousand Lakes in its entirety; a performance by Anaal Nathrakh; a performance by Bulldozer, Bloodbath’s first US show with Nick Holmes as vocalist; a performance by Cianide, and that’s just the first three letters of the alphabet.

Naturally, one of the charming consternation of such festivals is set time conflicts. 2015 already has its fair share of scheduling conflicts, most notably Mobb Deep vs. Ufomammut/Yob, Amorphis vs. Thantifaxath and Agoraphobic Nosebleed vs. Tsjuder. I have a tool for that.

One of the members of my fest-going crew came across a spreadsheet outlining each band’s set time for planning purposes, courtesy of Alix Vallecio. For those interested here are Dropbox links for the spreadsheet in PDF and XLS.

In addition, as always, I’d like to offer up the comment thread to rideshares and housing offers below. You can look for and offer the same at the official MDF forum or try your luck at Facebook, but readers have preferred to do so here in the past. In addition, feel free to plan meet-ups and what have you below, if you so desire. There will be more IO content throughout the week, but my attention will be on MDF for the most part. If you’re attending feel free to say hello or email me at joseph@invisible oranges dot com.

See you in the pit.

—Joseph Schafer