Are Metallica just two days away from making an announcement regarding 2020 festival appearances? Things seem to be heating up after the band launched a mysterious countdown clock yesterday (Tuesday, Oct. 7), which is set to expire this Thursday (Oct. 10) at noon ET.

As if the elusive timer at MetallicaXX.com weren't enough to stoke Metallica fans' excitement, several festivals under the banner of promoter Danny Wimmer Presents — Aftershock, Louder Than Life, Sonic Temple and Welcome to Rockville — broadcast messages Tuesday indicating they were "hacked." What's more, the puzzling dispatches (also found at each event's website) uncover a countdown that expires the same day as Metallica's. See the festival messages down toward the bottom of this post.

"The page you are trying to access is no longer under admin control," the festivals' shared missive reads, at the same time sounded out by a garbled, computerized voice. "We've waited long enough. We've taken matters into our own hands. We will get what we want. It's simple. You have until 10/10 12PT to give us what we want or we leak server access credentials. You have 3 days."

But what do these "hacked" communiques have to do with Metallica? It appears to be more than simply coincidence, as Blabbermouth pointed out.

For what it's worth, some also are pondering a similar idea: Could Metallica's mysterious countdown timer lead to the return of the band's own Orion Music + More festival? After first launching in 2012, the subsequent 2013 edition of Orion was the last time that took place. Perhaps it never came back for a third round for good reason. In 2015, the band said they lost millions both times.

Still, it's yet to be seen what will actually come of all these countdowns. But Metallica fans are certainly on the edge of their seats with anticipation for what will crop up. After all, only two days and counting remain.

Last month, the "Hardwired" rockers stunned fans when they issued a statement explaining that James Hetfield had entered rehab to treat addiction. For Metallica tickets on future tour stops, head here.

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