Friday, 1 March 2013

The HMM Guide To Irish Festivals 2013

Staying home this summer? Don't let the weather get you down, there are plenty of reasons not to leave Ireland in your search for quality tunage. Here's your guide to our very own festivals from May to September...

Life (24-26 May)

Kicking things off this summer is Life Festival, a chillout dance/drum 'n' bass weekend that usually takes place on the last weekend of May in Belvedere House. For those looking to start things early, Life is the place to be having picked up several awards in recent times including  'Best Irish Dance Festival' at the Irish Festival Awards the past 3 years in a row.

Tickets: A decent offering at e160, and considerably cheaper on presale (e126/e138). There's even a ticket installment option offering you payments of e44 in 3 seperate transactions.

Line-Up: Highlights this year include Modeselektor, Groove Armada and MMOTHS. Full line-up available here.

Forbidden Fruit (1-3 June)

Forbidden Fruit growing reputation has led to the ambitous decision to expand from Dublin to Cork and Galway this year, not surprising really considering the immense line-up it featured in 2012 which included Death Cab For Cutie, New Order, Wilco and Grimes to name but a few. Another feature of the festival is the Comedy Tent which is set to continue in 2013.

Tickets: Regular prices stand at e49.50 (1 Day) e89.50 (2 Day) and e115 (Weekend), another bargain for the average festival goer.

Line-Up: Set to be announced this Tuesday with early bird tickets on sale Wednesday, stay tuned!

Longitude (19-21 July)

Rumours had surfaced of MCD's new addition to the festival scene as early as last year, and judging by the line-up announced earlier this week, it's going to be a good one. The laid-back vibe of the announced acts was a pleasant surprise for many who were expecting a cast of Oxegen shams, and it seems that Marlay Park is the place to be on the 19th-21st of July this summer.

Tickets: Early Bird tickets are e129.50 for the weekend and e44.50 for the day.

Line-Up: Kraftwerk (who'll be performing in innovative 3D style), Vampire Weekend, Yeah Yeah Yeahs and Modest Mouse. Full line-up available here.

Castlepalooza & Indiependence (2-4 August)

These two small-time events on the Bank Holiday weekend are great alternatives for the cheap and cheerful bunch of lads who are more than happy to spend their weekend in a field rather than actually focusing on the music. That's not to say the festivals don't provide decent acts though, with Castlepalooza featuring MMOTHS and Le Galaxie last year, continuing its tradition of promoting up and coming Irish acts. while the same can be said about Indiependence, which specialises in home grown talent including sets from Republic Of Loose, Fight Like Apes and The Blizzards since its inception. Both festivals take place on the same weekend and tend to share their acts amongst each other.

Tickets: Castlepalooza are offering a 3 day camping ticket at a staggering e59 at the moment, while Indiependence is still good value at e99 for the weekend.

Line-Up: Nothing announced just yet...

Oxegen (3-4 August)

It seems that the once mighty Oxegen has taken a slight fall in recent times having had a break in 2012 and cutting this year's event a day short. According to reports, the decision to shorten the festival is due to costs such as policing and insurance. In addition to the change of length, the traditional July spot that Oxegen holds has been switched to the first weekend of August, which seems a little inconsiderate towards the smaller events aforementioned considering Oxegen's massive attendence. Unless it's an absolutely cracking line-up (and it doesn't seem so with The Rolling Stones, Rihanna and Elton John the rumoured headliners), this is one to avoid as the knacker parade takes over Punchestown Racecourse for a very messy weekend.

Tickets: Last time around they were e244.50 for 4 day camping, e224.50 for 3 days, and e99.50 for just the one.

Line-Up: Reports were that we'd get the line-up last month but nothing so far...

Electric Picnic (30 Aug-1 Sept)

Without a doubt the country's greatest music event and one of Europe's finest festivals, Electric Picnic is back in 2013. In additon to it's usually excellent list of acts, the Body & Soul arena, Trenchtown Comedy Tent, and wonderful selection of food will keep campers entertained all weekend. Described in the past as the ''Irish Glastonbury'', this is one weekend you don't want to miss if it's anything like last year.

Tickets: Usually e229 for the weekend and e99.50 for the Sunday.

Line-Up: No info on that but if I was to speculate I'd go for Radiohead, Beck, The Stone Roses, The Arcade Fire and maybe, just maybe Daft Punk.

Well that's my guide to this summer in Ireland, personally I'll most likely be found at Electric Picnic, with Forbidden Fruit another distinct possibility while a day at Oxegen could be sufficed if they pull out some amazing headliner by chance.

Stay tuned for HMM's guide to the European summer festival scene next week.

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