June’s when the UK really comes into its own. Summer warmth, long days and the start of the proper festival season are a delectable recipe, and so it makes sense that you’d want to be informed about how best to spend those all important 30 days and nights. Lucky for you, we deal in exactly that kind of information, and if knowledge is power then we’re about to turn you into a real force to be reckoned with.
Yes, June is meant to be enjoyed, and there are few places better for that than music festivals. Whether you’re into dancing or moshing, UK cities or Croatian beaches, here are the ones we think deserve your time this June.
26th June - 1st July
Zrce Beach, Novalja, Croatia
Hideout is one of those Croatian festivals that you could go to just for the location; Zrce Beach is easily one of the most perfect settings imaginable, which is why parties there are so much sweeter. Dance on the beach to the likes of Major Lazer Soundsystem, Marco Carola or Stormzy, then cool off with a swim in the bluest sea you’ve ever seen. There aren’t many places that let you jump on a boat for a party with Hannah Wants, Solardo or My Nu Leng, have a dance there and then head back to land for wonderful food or a last few hours soaking up sun, but with five days of music Hideout lets you do that and so much more.
El Dorado Festival
30th June - 3rd July
Cirque Du Soul return with year two of El Dorado festival, taking to Herefordshire with Groove Armada, AJ Tracey, Gentleman’s Dub Club and Dusky for company. TQD, Kenny Ken and plenty more join in on the action, and with a wellness and recovery space, morning yoga classes and all your usual circus add-ons, music is only part of the fun. Set with Eastnor Castle as its backdrop, the festival has a beautiful setting and all, with guests set to enjoy the space as much as the spectacle. Hard to go wrong with a festival like that.
Saturday 3rd June
Victoria Park, London
One of several exceptional festivals to take London’s Victoria Park as its home, Field Day brings in some of the biggest names in underground music, with Aphex Twin, Flying Lotus and Nicolas Jaar just a few to grab the attention from this year’s lineup. Serving fans of dance music, hip-hop, noise rock and more, Field Day makes bookings across the board, setting the artists up with unique stages and top quality sound systems whether they’re world famous acts or new talents waiting to break through.
Colwick Country Park, Nottingham
Detonate originated in Nottingham and quickly branched out into other cities, but it’s back in their hometown that they host their biggest showcase of bass music talents. Taking over the spectacular Colwick Country Park, dozens of acts representing the very best in drum and bass, grime, hip-hop, R&B and house will perform across the two days, with a focus on hefty basslines and body-shaking frequencies to whip up a signature Detonate frenzy. A full live set from Kano and DJ sets from Kolsch, Camo & Krooked, Sigma and more are indications that Detonate spared no expense in getting the acts they want for this one.
Donington Park, Derby
Dance music isn’t everything; sometimes distorted guitars and thrashing drums are just the ticket. Focussing on metal and rock of various different styles, Download Festival brings scores of quality acts to Derby’s Donington Park. With three days to enjoy and headline slots for Biffy Clyro, System of a Down, Aerosmith and other rock titans, the festival is up there with the best alternative festivals that the UK has, and will also feature performances from superband Prophets of Rage, Alter Bridge and Sum 41. Stages hosted by Zippo, Kerrang! and more guarantee plenty of variation too.
Wild Life Festival
Brighton City Airport
Down on the south coast, Brighton is a haven for those arty types, so you shouldn’t be surprised that it’s pretty well off in terms of music as well. Among a few festivals to bless the city is the returning Wild Life Festival, which boasts Jess Glynne, George Ezra, Chaka Khan and Fatboy Slim as headline acts on the Friday alone. All that adds up to a pretty tasty weekend, even before you’ve factored in a whole host of other artists and a Saturday that includes two special guest headliners on top of Damian Marley, Rag’n’Bone Man and Eric Prydz to name just a few.
Supa Dupa Fly
Various venues, Santorini, Thera, Greece
With a name like Supa Dupa Fly, you have to be pretty on point when it comes to knowing what’s cool and what’s supa dupa last year. Fortunately for the London promoters, they are just that, and that’s probably why their RnB and hip-hop events in the capital rarely sell out. Taking their highly successful parties to Greece, the Supa Dupa Fly crew present a festival on the amazing island of Santorini, headed up by an enviable array of en vogue DJs and urban music legends. Think garage legend The Artful Dodger, BBC DJs Clara Amfo, Semtex and A.Dot, and a few of the Kiss FM favourites and you’ve still only scratched the surface. Bumping restaurants, beautiful apartments, turquoise seas and golden beaches give this festival a near perfect location, so it’s no wonder TripAdvisor lists Santorini as one of the top five holiday islands in the world. Supa Dupa Fly indeed.
Heaton Park, Manchester
If you don’t know about Parklife, you’re clearly out of the loop. An end of exams pilgrimage destination for tens of thousands of students in and around Manchester, Parklife is one of the most popular underground dance festivals that the UK has, which is easy to understand after just a brief scan over this year’s lineup. As if a rare UK appearance from RnB heart-melter Frank Ocean wasn’t incentive enough, the two days of Parklife pack in dozens upon dozens of the very best artists, with A Tribe Called Quest, The 1975 and all your favourite grime artists performing live at some point. Oh, and seeing as it’s run by The Warehouse Project, you can rest assured that the DJs are going to be pretty good too.
Southport Weekender Festival
Saturday 10th June
Finsbury Park, London
We’ve all heard of the famous Southport weekenders, but did you know they’re doing a festival in London too? If you didn’t before, you do now, and here’s another freebie: Kerri Chandler, Roger Sanchez, David Morales and a whole brigade of house music legends are set to play at the Finsbury Park showcase. A stage full of Detroit’s finest, another of drum and bass’ most innovative acts and a Suncebeat Dome that has Dan Shake, Sadar Bahar and others make the Southport Weekender Festival a really befitting celebration of one of UK dance’s most revered parties.
Saturday 10th June
Boston Manor Park
Onto techno now, and you’ll struggle to find a more comprehensive lineup anywhere in London this summer. A joint venture between LWE and Adam Beyer of Drumcode, Junction 2 has 5 stages for a full day of 4/4 madness. Ben Klock’s in, and so are Tale Of Us, Joseph Capriati, Recondite and DJ Tennis. Offering something a bit more abstract, professor of strangeness DJ Koze plays for The Hydra, as do Daphni, Andrew Weatherall and Willow. Alan Fitzpatrick, Daniel Avery and Rødhåd will appear on the Warehouse stage, whilst Into The Woods fields Praslea, Jane Fitz and other stars too. So, just how much techno can you fit into a one day festival? Quite a lot, according to Junction 2.
Sunday 11th June
Finsbury Park, London
Another at Finsbury Park, Tranzmission recalls the rave days and presents them with an old school throwback, offering UK garage flavours alongside drum and bass, jungle, acid house and hardcore. General Levy, Shades of Rhythm, So Solid Crew, Ramsey & Fen and SASASAS are a small selection of the artists booked in.
Photo courtesy of Hideout Festival
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