Each and every year it seems we are graced by more innovative and bespoke festivals, as promoters aim to set their event apart from the rest of the pack. Summer 2019 is no different, with some fresh faces threatening to turn the market on its head. Here’s a selection of our picks from London and the surrounding region.
1. Naked City - Beckenhem Place Park, London
One that instantly stood out was krankbrother’s Naked City. On Saturday 27th July, an eclectic blend of artists will descend on Beckenham Place Park. Acts as diverse as Amp Fiddler and Kamaal Williams line-up side-by-side alongside Donna Leake and LTJ Bukem. There’s also a star-turn from 80s sensation Neneh Cherry. The organisers have deliberately looked elsewhere than the usual nucleus of festival headliners, with a core focus on London’s own homegrown talent. This is a festival for all ages, with children under 12 going free.
2. We Out Here: Abbots Ripton, Cambridgeshire
Nestled in the Cambridgeshire countryside, We Out Here takes place at Abbots Ripton (the site formerly used for Secret Garden Party) across four days from Thursday 15th August. A collaboration between Worldwide FM and Brownswood, the programme has been expertly curated by world music champion and legendary broadcaster Gilles Peterson. Aiming to connect the dots between soul, hip-hop, house, afro, electronica, jazz and beyond, the festival is set to feature Theo Parrish, Francois K, Objekt, Skee Mask, Bradley Zero, Josey Rebelle, Mr. Scruff and Laura Misch in its debut year. Peterson - also set to plays - said of the new venture: “I wanted to bring a festival to the UK that celebrates all the elements of our club culture, and the community that surrounds it, that I have been fortunate enough to be a part of over the years.” Sounds ace to us!
3. One Day At the Disco: Three Mills Island, London
Back in East London, One Day At the Disco takes place a Hackney Wick’s Three Mills Island on Saturday 24th August with a special one-dayer. Running from midday to 23:00, you can catch disco aficionadas such as Todd Terje, 2manydjs, Derrick Carter and Detroit Swindle. Plus there’s a special live performance from Kevin Saunderson’s seminal Inner City project. Traversing the spectrum of disco to house, this one evokes feel-good vibes and hands-in-the-air moments from the outset.
4. Red Bull Music Festival London: Aphex Twin
Always keen to support grassroots and non-mainstream music scenes, Red Bull has set-up its own London-based music festival. The programme covers 16-dates from August through to September this summer, with over 100 artists from all backgrounds involved. The ambitious project culminates at Printworks on Saturday 14th September, with electronic music visionary Aphex Twin playing an extended set in the Press Halls. We’re making that totally unmissable.
5. Turning Tides: Greenwich Peninsula, London
If those purse strings are tight, worry not. Turning Tides is a free music, arts and wellness festival launching this summer. Taking place at Greenwich Peninsula and organised by our friends at Village Underground, Turning Tides promotes intoxicant-free raving, with emphasis on sobriety and abstinence. In addition to the music programme, there is also yoga down by the Thames and the chance to join the congregation of a secular “church”. Performance wise, you can see the likes of gospel collective Some Voices and Laura Mvula and Kwabs. It’s already had its first outing this weekend just gone, but returns for a second stint from 12th-14th July.
Tickets for Naked City, We Out Here and One Day At the Disco are on sale now.