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The third annual Carnival Of Madness tour kicks off on Tuesday (July 31st) in Springfield, Illinois, boasting a lineup that includes Halestorm, Evanescence, Chevelle and New Medicine. This marks the first time that two female-fronted bands have topped the bill of a rock package tour. The trek will run through all of August before finally winding down in early September.

Last year's version of the tour featured Theory Of A Deadman, Alter Bridge, Black Stone Cherry, Adelitas Way and Emphatic, while 2010's inaugural edition was put together by Brent Smith of Shinedown, and also featured Sevendust, Chevelle, Puddle Of Mudd and 10 Years.

Smith said in the past that he and manager Bill McGathy planned the tour from the start as an annual event: "This is a brand that we're building. Like, the Carnival Of Madness is something that Bill McGathy wants to grow into a major brand and a major tour so that he can continue to bring not only In De Goot bands, but other bands into the picture and really form a tour that when they see that emblem of the carnival, they know a huge show is coming."

Halestorm is touring behind its sophomore album, The Strange Case Of . . . , which came out in April and has already yielded the chart-topping "Love Bites (So Do I)."

Evanescence released its self-titled third major label album last fall, while Chevelle unleashed Hats Off To The Bull in December.

Evanescence singer Amy Lee, who recently praised Halestorm frontwoman Lzzy Hale, said, "We're really looking forward to the Carnival Of Madness tour this summer. We love Chevelle and haven't hit the road together in years, and I'm really stoked to finally be playing some shows with Halestorm. Naturally, I'm a fan of strong women in music and Lzzy's voice is spectacular."

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