Summer is finally here, so it’s time to get drape yourself in neon and biodegradable glitter and grab your tickets to the best music around. Here’s our pick of the top ten musical escapes this summer.
Barn on The Farm
Nestled within Gloucestershire’s rolling fields of gold is an oasis of ostriches, pints of fragrant Pimm’s, and the best musical offerings from around. Like a discovery weekly playlist for all your senses, the likes of rising star Maggie Rogers is combined with Cavetown, Same Henshaw and Cassia. Forever the home of youthful musicians, Barn offers a friendly hand the next big thing; whether that’s Ed Sheeran back in 2011 or Hozier in 2014. Who know’s maybe you’ll be the first to witness music’s next big thing?
Bloodstock Open Air
Feel the breeze hit your neck as you look up at the biggest heavy metal acts in the world. Juxtapositioning the Unsigned and Ronnie James Duo Stages, you are undoubtedly going to see the newest bands on the scene playing in synchronisation with the classics of the likes of Swedish Power Metallers, Sabaton. As an alternative to Download, the festival serves up an array of hidden gems which will simply blow your head off (in a good way).
A radical take on a radical city, get immersed in the world which is Boomtown. More than a festival, this weekend is an art experience which takes over your skeleton for a whirlwind of 1000 artists over 38 stages. So plant your tent and bloom into the Boomtown universe of colour, intrigue and the unexpected featuring The Streets, Slaves and Kate Tempest.
Community is the home whereby indie kids unite to dance around the campfire of The Kooks, Sea Girl and Kate Nash. A place where being on each other’s shoulders is more a regulation than restraint, so grab your loved ones by the hand, jump down to Finsbury park, and lose yourself in the crowds of screaming voices and hypnotic hand bops.
Find your home in the settlement of Green Man. Hidden in the natural beauty of the Brecon Beacons, the festival embraces you as one its musical kin and lets you explore the land and yourself with the musical leaders Father John Misty and IDLES close at hand.
Have you ever woken up to see a wild deer peering at you from outside the window? Kendal Calling is that lone deer amongst a wash of large festivals stomping for an audience. With the likes of Nile Rogers and Tom Jones, Kendal Calling really offers a different musical experience to every other festival out there and is a refreshing breath of air amongst the tide of indie boy bands screaming for attention.
The classic, the iconic and the intense. The muddy fields Leeds (and its accompanying Reading) is something everyone has to experience at least once in their life. It is true that as of late the festival has tried to shed its scaly skin of rock for a more commercial lineup, but that’s just what makes 2019’s lineup so enticing. Bringing together classic Foo Fighters with the likes of Billie Eilish, Anderson Peak and King Princess, every stage is overflowing with musical genius just waiting to be applauded.
Those on the outside will never understand. Those on the inside will adore. Whether you enjoy losing yourself in the heavy throb of bass, or dancing under the LED stars on the roofs of cars, Lost Village is a techno inspired La La Land bridge scene ready to engage your hearts, souls and minds.
A compression of talent in the hub of Manchester, Parklife lights up the North for one holy weekend a year. Whether your tastes are tickled by rap, pop or grime, Parklife offers is sure to satiate your very soul with some of the best musicians around today; featuring Solange, George Ezra and Disclosure (to limit myself to only three).
Get lost in a musical Wilderness complete with open water swimming and forests for this weekend in August. Headlined by the indie phoenix’s Bombay Bicycle Club, the ninth iteration of this incredible festival is to disconnect you from the hustle and bustle of every day life and leave your every essence buzzing with the happiness which only this wholesome festival can provide.
Festival Pictures by Press
Header Image by Jenna Foxton at Parklife 2018