Here at Highsnobiety we love a list. From 10 Films We’re Looking Forward to in 2013, to our pick of the 10 best up-and-coming albums in hip-hop and rock, this time we’ve decided to focus on something a little more seasonal: music festivals. As more and more lineups get released we can almost hear the music in our ears, feel the sun on our backs, anticipate the hour-long wait in line to use a quagmire-like portaloo, and the probable risk of finding yourself crumpled up in the corner of a crowd of strangers, with zero belongings and a memory that provides you with no answers. In order to hopefully avoid the latter two, and because festival options are so vast that it can sometimes be a little overwhelming, we’ve put together a collection of the top 10 festivals we’re most looking forward to this year. Having left out the big guns like Glastonbury and Bonnaroo, we’ve handpicked some that we hope will provide you with something a little different this year.
The Governors Ball, NYC, USA.
Lineup: Kings of Leon, Beach House, Feist, Erykah Badu, Polica, Nas, Animal Collective, Kendrick Lamar, Kanye West, The xx and more.
A three-day multi-music festival on Randalls Island in NYC, it takes place 7-9 June so it’s just made it in time for our top 10 rundown. It features an array of music genres, catering to all party revelers. Aside from the wide variety of music, the independently organized festival that first took place in 2011 features a variety of alternative activities including a silent disco, ping pong, photobooths and lawn games. There’s something for everybody, and then some. You can still get hold of day tickets for it here.
Roskilde Festival, Roskilde County, Denmark.
29 June-7 July
Lineup: Kraftwerk, The National, Rihanna, James Blake, Queens of the Stone Age, Action Bronson, Baauer, Danny Brown and loads more.
One of the largest and most charitable festivals in Europe, Roskilde is a non-profit culture and music festival situated in Denmark that donates its earnings to initiatives for children, young people and other humanitarian charities. If its moral achievements weren’t enough to sway you, its lineup should be. Taking place over a week, the festival also has an Arts & Creation program that features art from well-established and emerging artists featuring design, architecture, installations and performances, all keeping you occupied and entertained for the full week the festival takes place over. Festival tickets are still available to purchase here.
Worldwide Festival, Sete, France.
Lineup: Todd Terje, Four Tet, Ben Ufo, Jets, Mount Kimbie, Thundercat, J Rocc, Mala in Cuba, Omar Souleyman and many more.
Situated in the idyllic fishing port of Sete, on the southern coast of France, Worldwide Festival is the brainchild of veteran DJ, broadcaster and owner of Brownswood Recordings, Gilles Peterson. With music performances taking place on the beach, in the tumbled ruins of Theatre de la Mer, by the lighthouse of St. Christ, and street parties by the harbour, the locations are almost as exciting as the music itself. And with the festival running a whole week long you have time to indulge in it all at your own pace. Speaking from experience, nothing quite compares to a day spent under the sun in the Mediterranean Sea, with a plastic barrel full of €3 rosé in your hand and your favorite DJs playing in the background. Except maybe knowing it’s only the first day, and there are still six more to come. Tickets are still available online here.
Calvi on the Rocks, Corsica.
Lineup: Django Django, Busy P & Erol Alkan, Soul Clap, Braeur Brandt Frick, Nicolas Jaar and more.
Festivals held on beach resorts, along coastlines and situated by the sea are by no means new – Croatia plays host to more and more festivals each year – but Calvi on the Rocks fully immerses the festival goers by making the town part of the festival too. Located on the beautiful island of Corsica, all events running on the beach during the day are free to all local residents – Calvi on the Beach. And in the evening there are a number of venues, clubs and theatres, where the festival continues long into the night. The beauty of festivals nestled in a real place – not just a mini-metropolis built over the course of a few months in order to house the festival – but a town that exists beyond that, is that you can go off and explore it whenever you want. And Calvi is a town you will most certainly want to explore. Visit the website to find out more about it.
Yahoo! Wireless Festival, Olympic Park, London.
Lineup: Justin Timberlake, Jay-Z, Snoop Dogg, Kendrick Lamar, A Tribe Called Quest, A$AP Rocky, Nas, Frank Ocean, 2 Chainz and more.
For those among us who struggle to commit to overnight festival stays, especially if they involve hunkering down without what many would regard as basic living amenities, the Yahoo! Wireless Festival in London’s Olympic Park may answer all of your quandaries. This 12 p.m.-11 p.m. festival takes place over three days, so you still get your fill of music. What it may lack in nighttime entertainment it makes up for in a stellar lineup, playing host to the first ever performance of the ‘Legends of the Summer,’ Justin Timberlake and Jay-Z. You can still buy day tickets and a full weekend pass, get hold of them here.
Melt Festival, Ferropolis, Germany.
Lineup: Alt J, Azealia Banks, Joy Orbison, Scuba, The Knife, Ben Klock and many more.
With a lineup including mostly electronic, rock and techno music, Melt Festival is heightened by its extraordinary location. It is situated in Ferropolis, the ‘City of Iron’ – an open-air museum made up of old industrial machines from the mid-20th century, some of which measure up to 30 meters high, 120 meters long and weigh up to 1,980 tons. At night, strewn with lights and lasers, they make an impressive backdrop to the music. And all this steel is juxtaposed to the surrounding lake which revelers can enjoy swimming in during the day, getting respite from the German summer heat. Visit the website for more information and to buy tickets.
Osheaga Festival, Parc Jean-Drapeau, Montreal.
Lineup: Phoenix, Vampire Weekend, Frank Ocean, Kendrick Lamar, Big Boi, Quadron, Azaelia Banks, Death Grips and more.
The acts of Osheaga Festival isn’t just a run down of the hottest artists of the moment – although it is that as well – but a well-curated selection of live acts that all come together as a finely tuned festival lineup. It’s situated in the beautiful Parc Jean-Drapeau on Ile Ste-Helene, which is an island of tranquility located just off the bustle of one of North America’s most exciting cultural cities: Montreal. The festival is non-camping, which will come as a relief to those of you adverse to sleeping in tents, and although the Osheaga hotel accommodation is sold out, there are plenty of other private options nearby, and you can still buy single day tickets and three-day passes here.
Dimensions, Fort Punta Christo, Croatia.
Lineup: Moodymann, Theo Parrish, Floating Points, Ben Klock, Pantha du Prince, Mr. Scruff, Jimmy Edgar and many more.
Located in an abandoned 19th century beachside Fort in Pula, Croatia, Dimensions Festival showcases the best in underground electronic music. Only in its second year, Dimensions is already well-established as a festival with a well-curated selection of music, tailored to satisfy both the party revelers and the more discerning crowd, and everybody in between. All taking place within a multitude of unique venues including a dungeon, a courtyard, a moat, a beach stage, and not to mention numerous boat parties. They’re even hosting a pre-festival opening party in a Roman amphitheater. Surrounded by unspoilt coastlines and crystal clear waters, Dimensions combines the best elements of a festival with the best elements of a holiday. Check out more information on the festival and get hold of your tickets here.
Rock the Bells, various locations, USA
7 September-4 October
Lineup: Big K.R.I.T, Juicy J, Common, Danny Brown, Earl Sweatshirt, Flatbush Zombies, Jhene Aiko, Rakim, Talib Kweli and many more.
This year’s Rock the Bells celebrates their 10th anniversary with an as-ever strong lineup that takes place over four consecutive weekends in San Bernardino and Mountain View, California, Washington, D.C. and Rutherford, New Jersey. With an emphasis on hip-hop and R&B, there are still additional artists to be announced and this year’s festival will feature original virtual performances by the late Eazy-E (with Bone Thugs-n-Harmony) and Ol’ Dirty Bastard (with the Wu-Tang Clan), of course inspired by the hologram 2Pac at Coachella last year. Buy your tickets via their website.
Festival No.6, Portmeirion, Wales.
Lineup: Chic feat. Nile Rodgers, James Blake, Tricky, Mount Kimbie, Frankie Knuckles, Carl Craig, Gilles Peterson, plus many more to be announced.
Music festivals can avoid the stereotypical debauchery necessary in order to fulfill each party-goer’s quota, without becoming beige, boring and feeling like you’ll be shushed past 10 p.m. Festival No.6 is only reaching its second year, but it’s already making waves in a saturated festival market. Set in the fairytale surrounds of Port Meirion, neoclassical architecture collides with sandy beaches and palm trees to create the idyllic backdrop to a carefully, and cleverly selected lineup. Attendees will also be given the chance to enjoy film screenings, secret parties and comedy stages, as well as physical activities like wild swimming, clay pigeon shooting and archery. Find out more about the festival, and purchase tickets on their website.