There’s nothing like a music festival to get people excited, so buckle up, because festival season officially kicks off this weekend! Giving you the chance to kick back, socialise, and indulge in fashion that is acceptable only in ‘Festival World’ (read: bare midriffs, swimwear as outerwear, and lots of fringing), our festival scene is showing no signs of slowing down.
The weather, the beaches, the people… Queensland and festivals are made for each other, and the outlook for this season is better than ever!
Kim Barnard from The Urban List breaks down the best summer festivals to add to your calendar:
Caloundra Music Festival
It’s officially beach weather and what better way to celebrate the change of season than with a trip up the coast to listen to some tunes? The Caloundra Music Festival is a not-for-profit festival that plays host to all ages and music tastes. Set up at one of Queensland’s most popular beaches, and with performances by The Living End, John Butler Trio, and The Cat Empire, it’s well worth the drive.
Go to Caloundra Music Festival if: You love your bands with a side of sun and saltwater.
When & Where: 28-30 September, 2012 | Kings Beach, Caloundra
What started as a humble party in a park has grown and emerged as our favourite spring festival. Showcasing some of the freshest musical acts around (The Presets are headlining this year), in a relaxed atmosphere in the middle of the city, Parklife is a celebration of music and a whole lotta fun.
Go to Parklife if: You love being in the pit just as much as you love stretching out on the grass with a drink in hand.
When & Where: Saturday, 29 September, 2012 | City Botanic Gardens and Riverstage, Brisbane
Golden Days Festival
Keen for a relaxed, beachside festival with a bluesy vibe? Golden Days is for you. With big names such as Josh Pyke, Something for Kate, and Deep Sea Arcade performing in beautiful Coolum, on the Sunshine Coast, this is the perfect festival for kicking back and chilling out.
Go to Golden Days Festival if: You love a bit of blues and roots… and a surf.
When & Where: 16-18 November, 2012 | Coolum & Peregian Sports Complex, Coolum Beach
Sporting the tagline, ‘a civilised gathering’, it’s no surprise that Harvest is one of the most relaxed festivals going ‘round. Set in the City Botanic Gardens, and featuring Ben Folds Five, Beck, and Cake, Harvest is laidback, cool, and easy.
Go to Harvest if: You want a festival without the festival chaos.
When & Where: Sunday, 18 November, 2012 | Brisbane City Botanic Gardens
It’s Australia’s biggest electronic music festival, and it’s getting better every year. Dutch big-name, Tiësto, is leading the charge, and the rest of the lineup is just as star-studded.
Go to Stereosonic if: Dance music is your thing.
When & Where: Sunday, December 2, 2012 | RNA Showgrounds, Brisbane
Woodford Folk Festival
Folksy, green, alternative, hippy – call it what you like, there is something about the Woodford Folk Festival. Set on a big, old farm, complete with camping grounds, teepees (yes!), and showers, there is no more down-to-earth festival than this.
Go to Woodford Folk Festival if: You want to unwind and get back to nature.
When & Where: 27 December, 2012 – 1 January, 2013 | Woodfordia, Woodford
If you’re not ready to give up on the festive season and want to keep the party vibe going, break all your New Year’s resolutions at the first festival of the year, Summafieldayze. Held at The Spit, on Queensland’s Gold Coast, it’s one of the biggest festivals on the calendar. With The Chemical Brothers, Hot Chip, and Kimbra in the mix for 2013, it’s shaping up to be another cracker for this iconic event.
Go to Summafieldayze if: You love a beachy vibe. And lots of neon.
When & Where: Saturday, 5 January, 2013 | Main Beach, Gold Coast
Big Day Out
The King of the festivals in Australia, Big Day Out is a rite of passage for most Aussies, and it is with baited breath that we wait to hear the lineups announced every year. Tickets are on sale, and then not, in the blink of an eye, and people are left scrambling to find a way to get to the Coast for our most iconic gig.
Go to Big Day Out if: You love road trips, big-name bands, and sunshine.
When & Where: Sunday, 20 January, 2013 | Parklands, Gold Coast
St. Jerome’s Laneway Festival
With a killer line-up just announced, including cult multi-instrumentalist Bat for Lashes making her first Aussie festival appearance along with new kids on the electronica block, Nicolas Jaar, Flume and Chet Faker, Laneway has got plenty to get excited about. Tickets will go on sale Friday 5 October.
Go to Laneway Festival if: You have an aversion to fluoro.
When & Where: Friday, 1 February, 2013 | Alexandria Street, Brisbane
One of Australia’s more alternative music festivals, Soundwave just keeps on growing, and it looks like next year will be its most epic yet. Held at Brisbane’s RNA Showgrounds, and showcasing rock legends including Metallica, The Offspring, and Blink-182, tickets are sold out but you’ll want to beg, borrow or steal for this one.
Go to Soundwave if: You’re a rocker at heart.
When & Where: Saturday, 23 February, 2013 | RNA Showgrounds, Brisbane