Summer is fast approaching us (finally) and with the festival season on our heels it's time to take a look at that essential part of the warmer months. The music festival. The all too common, unsanitary arena for spending a pay-check on two days of long queues, aimless drunken wandering and non-specific confusion related to lost phones, bad DJs and living off a diet of hot dogs and deeply fried, soggy potato wedges. Gone are the times where this was a festival staple, the future looks bright… and it's filled with organic produce, curated line-ups and fully-functioning toilet blocks. DJBroadcast brings you the Top 10 Need-to-Know festivals this summer, hand picked on a selection of important qualities like intuitive line-ups, wallet worthiness, edible food and over all chill vibes.
Morocco (September 11 – 13)
The idea of sipping chilled gin poolside whilst the likes of Guy Gerber, Âme and DJ Harvey waft around by your ears is pleasing to say the least. New comer on the festival circuit is the mysterious Oasis. Held in a stunning location at the foot of the Atlas Mountains, the festival comes complete with multiple pools and palms at the Hotel Fellah, Marrakech. Oasis combines a stellar menu of artists with idyllic scenery and an ode to infusing the cultural history of the area and Morocco into its first run. Definitely not one to miss and leaning towards the luxurious.
Germany (July 31–August 2)
Since its conception in 1998, a guest total of 3,000 is the limit for Nachtdigital and stands as such to this day. Another trait of the festival is the continual passion and personality injected into each new year. Notorious for its two-minute ticket sell-out records and commitment to making the festival experience affordable, Nachtdigital is often described warmly as "the best festival ever", and continues to hold onto that title. Interlacing techno, deep house and disco, the small but powerful artist arrangements reflect on the festivals low key yet driven attitude to showcasing electronic music of the highest quality to a backdrop of lovingly hand crafted decoration and lighting. Look out this August for Helena Hauff, Andy Stott and Karenn gracing the stage of this memorable event.
3. O Tannenbaum Waldfest
Germany (June 12 – 14)
If you've lived in Berlin for at least a little while, you've probably dropped in on cozy musical dive O'Tannenbaum. For it's second year in a row, the bar will host it's own intimate summer festival. Somewhere near the Polish/German border in a redundant military fort. Expect to find non-stop music, or at least for 48 hours straight. Non-vegan and vegan meals, Belgian beer and camping in the warmth of late July is what the European summer embodies. We think the teensy woodland festival will be endearing beyond measure.
4. Norberg Festival
Sweden (July 30 – August 1)
Norberg Festival is a technologically awe-inspiring festival held in the abandoned minesite Mimerlaven in Norberg, Sweden. The site provides an appropriately industrial backdrop to the avant-garde electronic event. Featuring an all-festival "jam session" on their "Really Open Stage" which allows visitors to tinker with pricey equipment from the likes of Roland, Elektron and Teenage Engineering. Reminiscent of Atonal, the festival spawns digital creativity. Packing a grossly talented line-up of both left field and better-known electronic artists along the lines of Perc, Cosmin TRG and Klara Lewis.
Netherlands (September 14 – 20)
Incubate has an unpredictable yet prodigious line up. The team behind the event, have thrown together dreamy synth-pop with drawling psych-rock, stewed avant-garde minimalism and murky industrial techno. Describing itself as a celebration of cutting edge culture, the festival showcases this with the use of visual arts, music and dance. At Incubate you can expect to find inspiring debate next to contemporary dance next to free jazz next to metal; An awe-inspiring festival that is overflowing with mental and sensory stimulation of the highest quality. Cabaret Voltaire is in company with Samuel Kerridge, AnD, psych rockers WAND and the likes of Laurel Halo, Xosar and Mercury Rev.
6. The Garden Festival
Croatia (July 2 – 10)
Set in the tiny coastal Croatian town of Tisno, The Garden Festival is strictly limited with a seriously small attendance limit sitting in the hundreds. The Adriatic party is known for it's luxurious setting. Boutique accommodation, luxury Shikar tents from India and villas are the housing of choice. The soundtrack to the festival doesn't fall short of its paradise-like arena. Studio Barnhus, Alex Bowman, Levon Vincent and hundreds of others are spread about the site, beach side, by yacht or hell, even by a waterfall. A festival that truly must be experienced as an ultimate slice of paradise and iconic electronic music.
7. Øya Festival
Norway (August 11 - 15)
Norwegian festival darling Øya manages to encompass the perfect balance between big time players and the more eclectic, left field and local. The festival is split into day festivities, set to a backdrop of the inner Oslo area, and the evening "Øya Natt". The party by day is strictly on the festival's quarters, but come nightfall Oslo comes alive in bars and venues across the capital. Showcasing hundreds of international and local artists selected at each venue's prerogative, notorious for its massive, superior line-ups. The Norwegian summer weather and attractive crowd all add to the awesome festival's reputation. This year expect to see disco icons CHIC featuring Nile Rodgers on the main stage.
8. Supynes Festival
Lithuania (June 25 – 28)
With Supynes, techno enthusiasts seeking a change of scenery can indulge themselves far into the deep forests of Lithuania. The classy Supynes is an amalgamation of nature fuelled isolation and modern electronic music. Situated in the remote Lithuanian pine forests, the formidable line-up packs a punch with an Ostgut Ton showcase on the bill among other offerings. Supynes doesn't just cover the regular bill of talent though. With a reputation for showcasing Lithuanian and up and coming artists, the festival offers variation on multiple fronts and an opportunity to breathe in the deeply wooded air of the wilderness surrounding.
9. LDZ Festival
Poland (June 5 – 6)
If you are sick of frequenting the same haunts and festivals, seeing the same acts and are yearning for a little expansion when it comes to your electronic music peripheral, then look no further. LDZ is small, but also mighty. A carefully curated audiovisual component of the Lódz Festival, the festival showcases the best Poland has to offer over a two-day period. The programme intuitively sews together electronica, techno, dance and theatrical performance with contemporary and noise by the way of hand picked Polish musicians and artists. This artistically inspiring project is one to watch and the festival itself is a good opportunity to be educated in the diversity of the Polish electronic and contemporary scene.
10. Festival No6
Wales (September 3 – 6)
An exquisite Italianate coastal village is the last thing you’d expect to find on a forest-fringed inlet in Wales. Musically the award winning line-up ranges from Motor City Drum Ensemble and DJ Harvey to Grace Jones and Belle and Sebastian. Infused into this is the arts and culture section, which is as vivid as the musical component. The Quietus, Finders Keepers and Heavenly Films all have jumped onboard to help No6 weave a culturally vibrant four- day plan of talks performance and film. No6 is also notorious for having a delicious take on festival bites. With home brewed ale, pop-up champagne and oyster stalls and organically sourced produce.