Lucy, Bron & das Euro Festival: Part 1

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Fill up your disposable flasks and dust off your party jacket – festival season is incoming and we’re more than a little bit excited. With an increasingly crowded festival menu, we thought we’d pick out a few European do’s that we’re looking forward to – focussing on events that are both musically tasty, with some form of travel / special experiential lure and (at the time of posting) still with tickets available. So…. split over two, hopefully marginally enlightening posts, and doing our best to avoid sound like a pair of Basic Bitches, we give you Lucy, Bron & das Euro Festival: Part 1. Get all in up and around that, and hopefully you can join us for a warm, stealthed vodka at many or at least one. Festival kisses! X

MAY

SPOT FESTIVAL Aarhus, DENMARK | 1 – 4 May

Kicking us off with festival season in Europe is SPOT Festival. Located in the mostly University town Aarhus this is an interesting one to get around for a variety of reasons. To start us off, it’s a strictly Nordic only event – HALLLOOOOO Babe’mark. That’s right, we are looking at you: Norway, Finland, Iceland, Sweden, Denmark… Have I missed any? All coming together in the sleepy city of Aarhus to reign havoc and discover all that emerging talent out of the great north. Spot mostly classes up your Festival itinerary as many of it’s shows are located in the music hall, which can make for some pretty outstanding listening. Watching live, independent, Scandinavian pop flavours whilst seated in an amphitheater type setting is pretty magical.

ESSENTIAL: There are probably tonnes of essentials for Aarhus – a jumper, because it’s not that warm. Money, because Denmark is intensely expensive. But my main essential – alcohol from across the boarder. Drinks are a necessary evil – and as mentioned, Denmark is expensive. BYO Wodka.

Spot Festival

HER MIT DEM SCHÖNEN LEBEN Rügen, GERMANY | 23 – 25 May

Things we didn’t think about doing in May? Heading to the German coastline. We doubt it’ll be warm enough for swimming (is it ever warm enough for swimming in the Ostsee?!) and no one can predict what’ll happen with the Frühling sun, BUT THEN this little number fell onto our radar and we’re aufgeregt. Taking place in the beach resort Prora on Ostsee island Rügen, Her mit dem schönen Leben (Give us the good life) draws some parallels to the UK’s Bugged Out Weekender, with it’s adult’s-electronic music-playground cross resort-setting vibe – however we’re predicting things might be a little calmer, given German festival go-ers as a whole, and a mostly (but not exclusively) German line-up of electronic artists including Blawan, Robag Wruhme, Oliver Schorles, KiNK, Rodhad, Recondite, Gerd Janson and 70 or so more. What’s really making it for us though, is the beautiful location – dunes, forests and a giant sandy coastline, 4hours-ish north of Berlin. The history of Prora is also significant and one that the organisers have made an effort to explain and share (auf Deutsch) – with the giant resort complex originally designed as a 20,000 bed resort during the Third Reich and having never opened being used post-war a base for the Soviet Army. Her mit dem schönen Leben aims to mark this beautiful part of Germany with a more positive history through dancing and techno – and we’re on board with this idea.

ESSENTIAL: A good jacket. A far cry from the saucy Adriatic breezes of Croatia, we’re told these winds by way of the Nordics can be fierce. Which if you survived a northern Euro winter should be a non-issue – as long as you get your layers right.

PRIMAVERA SOUND Barcelona, SPAIN | 28 – 31 May

If you like:

  1. music – all sorts, every type, discrimination is not in your vocabulary.
  2. the sun
  3. lots of small meals (AKA tapas)
  4. red wine with fruit (AKA Sangria ! / who doesn’t !)

Primavera Sound is for you. This one stop shop of a music festival is located in Barcelona, sitting a mere 6km from the central haunts. Priding itself on bringing you everything independent from rock to electronic to experimental {insert genre here} there is something for everyone. The cream on this cake? It’s a city festival. I love city festivals. Camping – sure, I can get around it but not with a hangover and 30’C+ heat. So the fact you are in Barcelona, at the very beginning of summer AND staying in hotels – this is a personal heaven. This year there are so many people playing, it’s almost intimidating. From Sky Ferreira, Jamie xx, FKA Twigs – oh god there are so many, it’s extensive – go on, check it out yourself it’s a better use of everyone’s time.

ESSENTIAL: YOUR BATHERS ! Hallo ! We are in Spain – shit’s hot as. Don’t just listen music and chew on ibuprofen – get around some beach action. It’s where the babes will be, probably.

JUNE

WEATHER FESTIVAL Paris, FRANCE | 6 – 9 June

While for the Berlin-based, the music and venues probably aren’t that far off what we’re met with on any given weekend here, we’ll take any excuse to visit Paris – and as far as ‘excuses’ go, four days of finely selected house and techno across a number of the city’s spaces (on top of the city’s food, wine & visuals lures) seems like a pretty bloody great one. In only it’s second year, Weather Festival stands out amongst other multi-venue city festivals for not only Parisian charm yet it’s ridiculously appealing line-up – this round incl. Moodymann, Motor City Drum Ensemble, Three Chairs, The Moritz von Oswald Trio, Underground Resistance pres. Timeline, Floating Points, Rodhad, Donato Dozzy, Mount Kimbie and so many more. Locations include: the Arab World Institute (Institut du Monde Arabe), the Le Bourget Airport for the main event on Sat and the pretty fetching-looking La Bergere Park, Bobigny for the closer on Mond.  On top of all that they’re also throwing a series of ‘Off’ parties too. Sexy Parisians, banging tunes, partyingh in less-know parts of the French capital – oui s’il vous plaît .

ESSENTIAL: A few sentences in French. While we don’t doubt that most Parisians you encounter can handle English, you’ll find your visit a whole lot more friendly with at least attempting to navigate the basics in French (Je voudrais une biére s’il vous plaît – could be a useful start!).

FIELD DAY London, UNITED KINGDOM | 7 – 8 June

Now in it’s 8th year (and since 2013 stretching to two days), Field Day just gets better and better, and is one of our favourite city/park day’s out. Balls deep in East London’s Victoria Park, the festival tends to showcase an eclectic musical offering (with an electronic slant) and consequently draws a pretty tasty crowd – you’re far less likely to find muscle here. Acts we’re excited about this year include James Holden, Daniel Avery, Jon Hopkins, Danny Brown, Omar Souleyman, Todd Terje, Blood Orange, a cheeky Innervisions Ame & Dixon b2b (likely overwhelming vibes), and headlining Sunday, Pixies. On top of all of that, the food  this year is also looking wild – with Street Feast and Venn Street Market both featuring their vendors. Ultimate daytime feelings – and a good excuse for a London weekender IOO.

ESSENTIAL: A boozey brunch beforehand with mates. Ok, loose use of ‘essential’, but there’s nothing better than a tasty pre-event, no?

Field Day

MEADOWS IN THE MOUNTAINS Rhodopian Mountains, BULGARIA | 13 – 15 June

Fancy a smaller festival with a free-spirited, welcoming community feel? A journey far into Eastern Europe to stay in an insanely cute hillside village (complete with local travel via horse & cart)? House and techno at sunrise on a dancefloor that overlooks misty hills? Unless you’re one of our 0.0001% of readers from Bulgaria (здравей половинка!) heading into the Rhodopian Mountains for Meadows in the Mountains could very well be one of your more exotic adventures of the year – and one that we think would be well worth the journey. [Which by all accounts is pretty freakin’ long – yet cheaper than most internationals when €66 return flights from Berlin (!!) come into play]. Now in it’s 4th year, the family-run, super-small affair (we think they capped numbers at around 500 last year) will once again stick to their more underground music policy with Maayan Nidam, Ruede Hagelstein (live), Jazzanova (dj set), Moomin, Andrew Ashong and more on board to compliment the friendly and hedonistic vibe. As far as enchanting ones go, we think that this Bulgarian gem might take the cake.

ESSENTIAL: Low-strung companions. Embrace those loose-in-nature-/go-with-the-flow feelings and enjoy the magic with a group of like-minded people.

BERLIN MIDSOMMAR FESTIVAL Berlin, GERMANY | 20 June

The highlight of the summer time in Scandinavia (slash Europe – let’s be honest here) is the longest day of the year – Midsommar. It’s when you get together with your Nordic friends, listen to dreamy Viking’esque music, make flowery head pieces, dance around a pole in a non-slutty fashion and generally basque in the sunlight – because I guess it’s not that much of thing in the Northern parts of the world? IF you are in Berlin – you can celebrate this one with the femmes over at Nordic by Nature, and all their mates at the Urban Spree, for free. RHYMING ! All bands/ activities are TBD, but you can be sure – if you are in or around the fair city that is Berlin on the 20th of June, this one is for you.

ESSENTIAL: A flower head piece. Male, female, androgynous – everyone will be wearing a crown of flowers, taking selfies and generally blowing up Instagram with their one day a year hippie-pretty-chic.

Midsommar

SECRET SOLSTICE Reykjavík, ICELAND | 20 – 22 June

The sell for this one is pretty unique: experience 24 hours of daylight during the longest days of the year, in one of the summer-sunniest parts of the world. Whaaaaat. Debuting this year in the Icelandic capital, Secret Solstice is here to mess with your concept of day and night – and have a line-up with genre-hopping appeal along for the ride. Taking place in Laugardalur (which translates to Hot Spring Valley, mmmm), the three-day festival’s first year will feature Schoolboy Q, Woodkid, Banks, Carl Craig, The 2 Bears, Kerri Chandler, Boddika, Paul Woolford, oh and, Massive Attack. Hiya. Set a little out of the city, taking up their offer of on-site camping might be a nice option – however given the 24 hr sunlight-factor, temperature control and curtains could also be a good thang. Massive Attack, a trip to Iceland, shitloads of sun and dancing in celebration of Norse Mythology – we’re sold.

ESSENTIAL: Sunglasses and an eye mask – for obvious reasons.

JULY

THE GARDEN FESTIVAL Tisno, CROATIA | 2 – 9 July

If you’re yet to visit a boutique Croatian festival but want to make 2014 your year – a) good call mate! and b) you have shitload of choices. From mid-June to mid-Sept there’s an appealing option on every week, all with the constant variable of the country’s breathtaking coastline in the Adriatic Sea. Which isn’t a bad thing however it might help to know what musical and crowd flava your after. If a mostly house and disco soundtrack with a friendly, boogie-loving 20-something crowd is up your alley, then in this first half of summer we think The Garden Festival might be your one. As one of the first Croatian festivals established by non-locals (in 2006), the organisers have really nailed their thang – a 7 day (yikes!) combination of daytime beachside lazing, with wild boat parties, a consistently feel-good nightime offering of a main stage and off-site after party – all of which keeps a loyal crowd coming back each year (both punters and players alike). Located 90mins north of Split at The Garden Tisno (which also hosts Electric Elephant, Soundwave, SunceBeat and Stop Making Sense) this year’s line-up includes Crazy P Soundsystem (a festival staple), Axel Boman, Ben UFO, Levon Vincent, Bicep, Metro Area, Tim Sweeney, Prosumer and many more.

ESSENTIAL: Water. Don’t be a dick – it’s hot and you’ll probably be drinking all day. Get on board with hydration.

melt2013

MELT! FESTIVAL Ferrapolis, GERMANY | 18 – 20 July

I’m going to say one of the bigger mainstream festivals of Germany for the summer. Not that others aren’t big – but this one is catering for all sorts at all hours. Located a little over an hour out of Berlin if you are a general lover of music, this is the festival for you. From music acts (this year) from Chet Faker, John Talabot, Jungle, Moderat, SBTRKT buh – the list literally goes on. If you like music, it’s there for the taking. The thing about Melt is that you are camping. This is cool, but something to really think about. If you aren’t a camper, don’t like the elements (hot or cold) this one might be a bit hit and miss. Camping tip? Bring lots of bottled water, their “corner store” is a cultural melting pot of underprepared people.

ESSENTIAL: Buh, there are so many essentials for Melt, fuck. Dry Shampoo – because their showers cost money and are communal which is kind of confronting as an Australian. Disposable flasks – because you can hide them against your body and get away with it. Nothing valuable – because you will lose it – just ask 2013 Bron/ me.

 

(Lucy, Bron & das Euro Festival: Part 2, coming next Monat)

Love Bron? Follow @essentiallybron on Twitter! Email her on bron@lucyvstheglobe.com

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