With the busy festival season nearly upon us, Getintothis’ Craig MacDonald takes a look at what’s in store for 2016’s major events.
With the faint hope of some summer sun on the horizon, the time has come to don those shades, get your welly boots out and consume an absurd amount of cider. Yes, you guessed it folks, its Festival time!
Plenty of the Northwest’s festivals have featured in this years festival award nominations, proving just how fortunate we are to have such an expansive variety of festivals right on our doorstep.
The below brings a guide to all the events that will be going on throughout the summer time and beyond. So get them dates boxed off and start sorting out those all important clashes to make sure you see, who you want to see.
In the meantime, get a helping hand with what to expect with our hand playlist below and feel free to send your tips of any we may have missed out.
Dot to Dot Festival at Various Venues, Manchester – May 27 2016
A former winner of Best Metropolitan Festival at the UK Festival Awards, Dot to Dot Festival has come a long way from its beginnings in Nottingham and now takes place in Manchester and Bristol as well.
This years bash has already announced Mystery Jets, The Temper Trap, The Sherlocks and Barns Courtney among many more quality acts to check out.
It aims to unearth the best emerging talent and has in the past provided exposure to the likes of The XX, Wild Beasts and Jake Bugg.
Liverpool Sound City at Liverpool Docklands – May 28-29 2016
Arguably Europe’s premier metropolitan music festival, Liverpool Sound City returns to its new home at the city’s Docklands to reinforce Liverpool’s position as the musical epicentre of the UK. As well as bringing some of music’s biggest names, the event consistently provides a platform for emerging artists, often providing an opportunity to see the next big thing in an intimate setting.
Having been crowned Best Metropolitan Festival at this year’s UK Festival Awards and with hundreds more acts yet to be announced, this year’s event is shaping up to very impressive.
As revealed by Getintothis last autumn, this year’s event is over two days with artists being able to play the festival through the Apply To Play scheme. After a five year hiatus, Wirral’s finest The Coral return with new album Distance Inbetween to headline the event. Joining them on headline duties will be much loved Catfish & The Bottlemen who have risen from playing the festival in 2011 as an unsigned act to now headlining it.
The latest wave of acts to be added includes Circa Waves, Sleaford Mods, The Dandy Warhols, Band of Skulls and Young Fathers. With the danceheads at Freeze also bringing the likes of Hot Chip and Leftfield to the fold as they take over the Baltic Warehouse, there is certainly a lot to be excited about.
Check out our round up of 2015 festival here.
Primavera Sound 2016 at Barcelona – 1-5 June 2016
Our Catalan cousins in Barcelona have announced a spectacular line up for this years Primavera Sound as the event celebrates its 16th birthday. With Radiohead, a reformed LCD Soundsystem and PJ Harvey headlining a bill that includes Tame Impala, Air, Animal Collective and many more, there is plenty to get excited about in the Raval neighborhood.
Fire In The Mountain Festival at Aberystwyth, Wales – June 3-5 2016
Now into its fifth year, Fire In The Mountain Festival is set in remote mid-Wales in the foothills of the Cambrian Mountains. Presenting bands from the UK and North America in a homely and laid-back environment,the emphasis is very much on local and sustainable, so there’ll be plenty of good and ethically-sourced food, local real ale from the Purple Moose Brewery and, thankfully, not a can of Tuborg in sight.
Check out the festival’s own website for more information.
Lemonfest at Newton Abbot, Devon – June 4
The brainchild of two old school friends, Lemonfest is set in the idiylic setting of Devon and has a distinctly community feel to its persona with locally sourced food and drink all set along an eclectic mix of acts on the one day event. This years bash is headlined by Alabama 3 and Beardyman and also features the likes of The Computers, Mad Dog Mcrea and Kiko Bun on its bill.
Gottwood Festival at Anglesey, North Wales – June 9-12 2016
The niche boutique festival based in a remote Anglesey woodland setting enters its 7th year of celebrating electronic music and arts. This independent event is continuing to thrive and has added an impressive array of talented acts onto the current year’s bill, including Andrew Weatherall and Daniel Avery.
Read our full preview and details of more of the acts set to to perform at the festival here.
Positive Vibration Festival of Reggae at Constellations, Liverpool – June 10-11 2016
A mainstay in the Northwest event calendar, Positive Vibration will play host to a plethora of musical talent with DJ’s & Selectas, dub sound systems, dance, poetry and arts a plenty to check out when the event rocks up to Constellations this June.
With a line up that features the likes of Mad Professor, Trojan Sound System and Don Letts to name but a few, we recommend you get your colourful clothes out and come join us for the celebrations of all things Jamaican.
Parklife 2016 at Heaton Park, Manchester – June 11-12 2016
The Parklike Festival is an independent music festival that takes place annually over two days in Manchester’s Heaton Park. 2015’s event was attended by 150,000 fun-seekers over the course of the two days and with this years event being headlined by The Chemical Brothers, Major Lazer and featuring the likes of Ice Cube, Busta Rhymes and Circa Waves, there is bound to be one hell of a good time down the park.
Isle Of Wight Festival at Isle Of Wight – June 9 – 12 2016
Set on the island of the same name and one of the country’s most iconic festivals, Isle Of Wight Festival this year boasts the likes of Iggy Pop, Richard Ashcroft and The Kills, while headliners include The Who, Faithless, Stereophonics and Queen.
Download Festival at Donington Park – June 10 – 12 2016
The behemoth rock festival sees thousands make their annual pilgrimage to Donington Park where Rammstein, Iron Maiden, Black Sabbath, KoRn, Deftones, Nightwish and hosts more await them. Plus in a sensational move WWE’s flagship developmental show NXT will be on site to entertain the masses with global names including The Demon Finn Balor and NJPW legend Shinsuke Nakamura.
Africa Oyé at Sefton Park, Liverpool – June 18-19 2016
Inarguably the largest and best celebration of African music in the country, the much-loved Africa Oyé will return to Sefton Park this summer with Mbongwana Star and Pat Thomas among the acts announced so far for this years event.
Always a resounding success, recent years have shown the free festival as going from strength to strength. Expect this to be one of the highlights of the summer.
In addition to this, this year organisers have revealed a full programme of free workshops taking place all over the weekend including Afro dance styles, dance battles and drumming workshops to get involved in.
Read our review of last year’s event here.
Glastonbury Festival at Worthy Farm, Somerset – June 22 – 26 2016
Arguably, still the biggest festival in the musical world, Glastonbury this year boasts the likes of Grimes, Blossoms, John Grant and Glastonbury Emerging Talent winners, She Drew The Gun as well as headliners Muse, Coldplay and Adele.
Who knows, you may even get a cheeky set from Radiohead if you’re lucky?
Summer Days Festival at Clitheroe Castle – July 6, 8 & 9 2016
Taking place over three days in the grounds of Clitheroe Castle, Summer Days announces the iconic Echo & The Bunnymen as the final headliners for this years boutique extravaganza.
They join the likes of Everything Everything, Circa Waves, Lightning Seeds, Space. The Farm, Shed Seven and John Power in the idyllic setting with a line up that already boasts Gabrielle, Peter Hook and The Light and Jools Holland among many others.
T in The Park at Stranhallan Castle, Perthshire – July 8-10 2016
Now in its second year at its new home, T in The Park brings a stellar line up to Perthshire as it continues to strive to be the biggest festival north of Hadrian’s Wall. Boasting the likes of Jamie XX, The Last Shadow Puppets, Major Lazor and The Stone Roses.
Latitude Festival at Henham Park, Suffolk – July14-17 2016
Now very much part of the fabric of the festival circuit, Latitude provides a carnival of music, art, poetry and theatre. This years shindig is headlined by New Order, The National and The Maccabees with the likes of Chvrches, Beirut and Father John Misty also on offer.
Beat-Herder at Salwey, Lancashire – July 15-16 2016
Providing a breath of fresh air with its non conformist ideas, Beat-Herder returns to its Ribble Valley home following a tremendous ten year celebration in 2015.
This year’s bash is headlined by the ever impressive Primal Scream with the likes of Miike Snow, Mr Scruff, Donovan and Gentleman’s Dub Club featuring in this years diverse line up. You can even win tickets to it here!
Lovebox – Victoria Park, London – July 15-16 2016
Representing their first UK date since their reunion, New York dance-punk royalty LCD Sound System join the multi-experimental energised sonic kaleidoscope Major Lazer to headline London party Lovebox. With plenty more in store yet to be announced, this already looks like a winner for the summer.
Liverpool International Music Festival – July 22-24 2016
Liverpool International Music Festival is a free festival that takes place every summer across various venues. The 2015 event culminated in Summer Jam, four days of free events in Sefton Park celebrating the best of world music as well as emerging homegrown stars. The Echo and The Bunnymen concert on the Monday night accompanied by the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra will undoubtedly live long in the memory of those who attended.
LIMF returns in 2016 with The Wombats and Lianne Le Havas among the acts already announced – although note the change in date from its recent August bank holiday slot – and you can find all the details this years event here.
Bluedot at Jodrell Bank Observatory – July 22-24 2016
Named after an image of Earth taken from Voyager 1, new festival to the fold, Bluedot, will take place under the cosmic surroundings of Jodrell Bank Observatory and has a lineup to match the otherworldly theme.
Featuring French legend Jean Michel Jarre, Underworld, Caribou as well as Mercury Rev, Everything Everything and The Infinite Monkey Cage, this is a welcomed addition to the calendar.
Kendal Calling – July 28-31 2016
An independent festival based in Cumbria that has grown from a 900 capacity event in 2006 to a three-day festival which attracts 12,000 revellers. The festival picked up the best medium festival award in 2013. The 2016 line-up has been announced recently with Noel Gallagher, Madness, The Charlatans and Rudimental all on headlining duties.
Way Out West at Gothenburg, Sweden – July 11-13
One of the biggest events takes place in Scandinavia this August, when Way Out West hits Gothenburg with its exceptional musical extravaganza. This years event has plenty on offer for all music lovers from the likes of PJ Harvey, Morrissey, Massive Attack, Peaches all set to play together with Skepta, Eagels of Death Metal and loads more.
With this year being the festivals tenth edition, they recently announced that The Libertines have been added to an already blossoming array of artists including Sia, Daughter, Chvrches, Jamie XX, Gracie Jones and Sleaford Mods. If there is one place to be in Sweden this year, this is it!
Bloodstock Festival – August 11 – 14 2016
Bloodstock open air festival returns for 2016 with Twisted Sister, Slayer and Mastodon headlining the three days in Catton Park. Mecca for metal fans the line up benefits from the inclusion of big noise names Gojira, Anthrax, Behemoth, Acid Reign, Paradise Lost and a whole lot more. Horns at the ready.
Green Man Festival at Breacon Beacons, Wales – August 18-21 2016
The earthly wonderment that is Green Man Festival returns to its home in the Breacon Beacons for its 14th year with the eco friendly event announcing Belle & Sebastian, James Blake and Wild Beasts as this years headliners. With the likes of Unknown Mortal Orchestra and Battles on the bill, this family friendly compact gathering ticks many peoples boxes.
Reading and Leeds Festival at Richfield Avenue, Reading and Branham Park Leeds – August 26-28 2016
Spread across three days, in two different cities, Reading and Leeds Festival has seen many an iconic festival moment from Cobain in his wheelchair, to last years lack of female artists. This year’s line up will be headlined by Foals, Disclosure, Red Hot Chilli Peppers and Biffy Clyro, with the likes of A$AP Rocky, Fetty Wap and Haim also on the bill.
Creamfields, Daresbury, Cheshire – August 26-28 2016
An offshoot of the legendary Liverpool club night, Creamfields is Britain’s biggest and best dance music festival and has recently been awarded Best Dance Festival at the UK Festival Awards. This years line-up will see the likes of Calvin Harris, Avicii and Tiesto.
Get set for this years bash with a look at years gone by here.
Festival No. 6 at Portmeirion, Wales – September 1-4 2016
Set in the magical Italianate setting of Noth Wales’ Portmeirion that is most famous for providing the backdrop to 1960s TV show, The Prisoner, Festival No. 6 bills itself as being the Festival “unlike any other, in a place like no other“. We went along to experience it for ourselves last year and we just had to concur – see our review here.
End Of The Road Festival at Lamer Tree Gardens, Wiltshire – September 2-4 2016
The eclectic event is aimed towards lovers of all things folk, alt.country and Americana. With Joanna Newsom, Animal Collective, Bat For Lashes and plenty more on offer, this is sure to please those who are able to get to it.
Bestival at Robin Hill, Isle Of Wight – September 8-11 2016
Now in its twelfth year, the colourful mass fancy dress extravaganza that is Bestival, will be bringing all things glamorous to this years bash on the Isle Of Wight. With a lineup featuring The Cure, Hot Chip, Loyle Carner among a whole host of acts, make sure you get dressed up for this one.
Always The Sun Festival at Stoke Park, Guilford – September 10-11 2016
Spread across two days at Stoke Park, Always The Sun Festival brings an array of music,arts and crafts to Guilford with this years headliners being The Mystery Jets and Turin Brakes. With the likes of Spring King, The Big Moon and Kagoule also on show, there is plenty for everyone.
Ramsbottom Festival at Ramsbottom Cricket Club – September 16-18 2016
A family friendly festival and a celebration of the music of the region as well as larger national bands, Ramsbottom Festival ticks many boxes providing not only great music but also excellent beer and food. This years line up boasts Public Service Broadcasting, Gaz Coombes and Fun Loving Criminals as its headliners, with the likes of Julian Cope, Larkins and Smooth and Turrell also on the bill.
Liverpool International Festival of Psychedelia at Camp and Furnace, Liverpool – September 23-25 2016
In recent years Liverpool International Festival of Psychedelia has cemented its place in the hearts of festival attendees from Liverpool and further afield. Since expanding to a two day event in 2013 the festival has gone from strength to strength and the 2015 incarnation was its best yet.
Growing in confidence and providing more of a festival feel, we’re sure that the festival’s upward trajectory will continue with 2016 as the fashion for all things ‘psych’ remains buoyant.
Liverpool SoulFest – venue to be confirmed, October 2016
With its debut year proving a tremendous success, Liverpool SoulFest returns later this year in October with details of venues and artists still to be confirmed. Last year’s event was headlined by the legendary soul diva Gabrielle and Mercury Music Nominee Eska so we expect this year’s event to be equally as good.
Read all about last years event here.
Beacons Metro – Various Venues, Leeds – October 26 – November 7
Spawned from the Beacons Festival, Leeds based festival series Beacons Metro, returns for its second gathering this year with a solid line up of acts in and around the Northern city for all to enjoy.
From Dinosaur Jnr through to Cat Eyes, as well as featuring Fucked Up, Diarreha Planet, Boxed In, Lady Leshurr and Local Natives, this one means business from the start. With Hookworms, Roots Manuva and Wall also on the bill, you should pay this a visit.
Liverpool Disco Festival at Camp and Furnace – October 26 2016
A new festival to the city this year, Liverpool Disco Festival looks set to bring the good times to town this October when it hits the Camp and Furnace.
With a the launch event already boasting Francois K and Jaegerossa, you should all be clued up on those moves before the main event later in the year.
To keep up to date with all the groovy goings on under the glitter ball at Studio 54, you can find details here.
Shiiine On Weekender at Butlin’s Minehead Arena, Somerset, November 11-14 2016
Following on from the success of last year’s sell out shindig, Shiine On Weekender returns to Somerset this November where it will be showcasing some of the best indie and dance music to come from the 90’s era as well as some of the best new talent around. With the latest acts featuring The Stairs, Mark Gardener, Saffron, The Real People, Hurricane #1, Steve Lamacq, Paul Bardsley, Northern Uproar and The Adge.
This year’s edition has already announced Echo & The Bunnymen, Shed Seven, Black Grape, Cast, Orbital, Utah Saints among the first wave of acts. With plenty more delights set to be announced, you can get a taste of what to expect with a special warm up show due to take place in The Magnet on March 4.
Liverpool Music Week – various venues, October 26 – November 5
Following its re-emergence in 2014 after a couple of years away, last year saw Liverpool Music Week really pull out all the stops.
With 2015 having been such a success in terms of the events put on, the challenge for the organisers this year was to translate a series of stand-out individual shows into something that knits together as a cohesive whole and provides a festival experience.
With the announcement of Warpaint, John Carpenter, Clean Cut Kid, and Gogo Penguin, as well as She Drew The Gun and Cat Eyes in the first wave of acts to play, they are certainly living up to the task.
Read all about this years event here.