Roskilde, Denmark 29th June-6th July
You may know it as the epicentre of bacon, woolly jumpers and cycling, but Denmark also plays host to Northern Europe’s largest annual music festival in Roskilde, just 35km from Copenhagen. The festival prides itself on its huge variety of acts, and this year’s lineup looks sure to please Park End and Babylove fans alike, with everyone from Drake and Bastille to Chance the Rapper and Warpaint. A word of warning though; the English like to joke about festival toilets. Danes like to ignore them. Eight days of beery piss can be pungent.
Confirmed: Arctic Monkeys, The Rolling Stones
Main Square, Arras, France 3rd-6th July
Main Square a dix ans! This is the festival for culture nuts. Now in its tenth year, Main Square festival is located in a UNESCO World Heritage site, the Citadel of Arras, France. With only two stages it’s on the small side, but don’t let that fool you; this is no baby. Iron Maiden, Foals and The Black Keys are all performing. And if you so desire, you can watch 2012’s X Factor #fail James Arthur perform ‘Impossible’ and stare into your soul through those big eyelashes. Though let’s be honest, you’d probably rather be dancing to Skrillex, and that’s saying something.
Confirmed: Bombay Bicycle Club, David Guetta, Black Keys
Sonar Barcelona, Spain, 12th-14th June
The party capital of Europe plays host to many Summer festivals, but Sonar stands out as a particular favourite. It labels itself as the International festival of Advanced Music and National Media Art, and the line-up including Chic feat. Nile Rodgers, Caribou and MØ can easily justify both the hype and the ambitious (if slightly pretentious) title.
Confirmed: Massive Attack, Rudimental
Sziget Budapest, Hungary, 11th-18th August
Pronounced like “cigarette” without the grr in the middle, this festival is certainly no drag, as it takes place over 7 days on The Island of Freedom in Budapest and typically hosts over 1000 musical performances of attended by over 300,000 campers. Confirmed acts for this year include the likes of Placebo, Macklemore & Ryan Lewis, Lilly Allen and Jagwar Ma. And if
those names don’t excite you there’s also a giant blackboard where you write about the things you want to do before you die. Let this be one of them.
Confirmed: Outkast, Skrillex
Electric Elephant, Tisno, Croatia
What’s better than mates, vodka, and a long weekend of lazing by the beautiful Adriatic sea? All that and an electronic music festival to top it off. Set in The Garden Tisno, Electric Elephant is a non-stop party of sun, sea and dance. With boat parties and outdoor clubbing, it’s the perfect solution for those wanting a boozy holiday, but who can’t quite bring themselves to book Magaluf.
Confirmed: Tom Findlay (Groove Armada) DJ set, Awesome Tapes from Africa
Festival Mundial, The Netherlands, 27th-29th July
Now for something completely different: a festival that draws some of the world’s most eclectic acts to northern Europe. If you’re particularly disheartened by the Reading/ Leeds line-up and can’t be bothered to blow your student loan on Glastonbury or Bestival, why not delve into the likes of Belgian electroswinger Tim Arisu, Danish rustic punk-rockers The Sexican, or my personal favourites Korean avant-garde/post-rock band Jambinai. You heard it here first. All for under 60 quid.
Confirmed: The Skints, Asian Dub Foundation