The Pyramid Rock 2013 festival has been cancelled, with a statement confirming that the organisers of the annual New Year’s festival will not be going ahead this year, citing “tough economic conditions.”

A full statement appeared on Pyramid Rock’s official website that reads:

Inversion Productions, the promoter of the Pyramid Rock Festival has regretfully advised they will not be proceeding with the event in 2013.

First held in 2004 the multi-day camping music festival has gained an excellent reputation providing top entertainment for young music fans in a safe environment. Over nine years of operation the annual New Year’s Eve festival has hosted national and international artists from across the globe at a coastal property on Phillip Island.

Due to tough economic conditions in recent years the Festival has become unviable for Inversion Productions and their only option is to cancel the event. Options will be explored for the festival to return on a permanent basis in 2014.

The statement has actually been sitting on the site, unnoticed for two days, without gaining attention from music media (guilty). Additionally, the festival’s Facebook and Twitter accounts laying dormant since January, following shortly after the conclusion of last year’s event with a lineup that included international artists The Cribs, Blood Red Shoes, and Unknown Mortal Orchestra alongside locals such as Tame Impal, Karnivol, 360, Kingswood, Saskwatch, and more.

Since its inception in as a one-day event in 2004 – featuring Regurgitator, Magic Dirt, Cog, andDallas Crane – the Phillip Island music festival swiftly grew into a two-day, New Years extravaganza complete with camping and multiple stages.

Our Tone Deaf reviewer of Pyramid Rock 2012 noted that the festival had undergone some downsizing in scale, noting that “the festival’s ninth annual running… [was a] much smaller event than in previous years, with less than 5,000 punters [taking] to the picturesque Phillip Island to welcome 2013.” “Due to tough economic conditions in recent years the Festival has become unviable for Inversion Productions and their only option is to cancel the event.”

Adding that: “The main stage took a considerable downsize; now appearing under a Big Top with the secondary Pharaoh’s Stage becoming smaller still. For the artists, the smaller crowds would be considered somewhat disappointing, however the experience was ultimately improved for the punter.”

The news of Pyramid Rock’s cancellation due to “tough economic conditions” follows hot on the heels of Tone Deaf’s exclusive report that the company formerly known as Future Entertainment Pty Ltd has entered liquidation. Additionally, Fat As Butter promoters Mothership Music also recently entered voluntary liquidation after losing a crucial court case seeking over $400,000 in damages against Flo Rida for his 2011 festival no-show.

Then there was the messy financial collapse of Peats Ridge Festival, entering into liquidation as creditors and liquidators were left searching for scraps amidst accusations that the festival’s promoter had embezzled $1.3 million and attempted to wipe records; the fallout out from Peats Ridge is still being felt as it mires through a sticky saga.

The Pyramid Rock festival cancellation marks a major blow to yet another mid-sized music festival, with many going quietly into that good night, with Tasmania’s Soundscape Festival quietly exiting the scene after a strong final showing despite poor ticket sales, and reggae and roots Ragamuffin Festival not returning for 2013.

There have been many more victims in the competitive music market in recent years, as industry reports note that Australia’s live music industry has experienced a dip in revenue and attendance, forcing even the biggest music festival players to enter into mergers to bolster against the encroachment of fierce competition.

Last year, Michael Chugg and his Chugg Entertainment group bought into Homebake as well as a new deal with A&R Worldwide.

Big Day Out is charging ahead with their first ever triple-bill of headliners for next year’s Blur, Arcade Fire, and Pearl Jam-topped edition, but it came about after a lot was riding on this year’s edition in January following the partnership between Big Day Out and international promoters C3 Presents. Likewise the forged partnership between the top brass of Falls Festival and Splendour In The Grass, which helped make Falls thrice as nice this year as it heads to Byron Bay for the first time ever.

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