Summer’s here and if there’s one thing Aussies love more than a Bunnings’ snag, it’s music festivals. Cool tunes, wild outfits, and kicking back in the grass with a few mates is basically all Aussies live for in those few months of the year where it drops below 20 degrees on the thermostat.
The only thing harder than the long wait through winter is choosing which festivals to spend your hard-earned cash on. With so many to choose from, how do you decide? While some go for the massive outdoor three-dayers, others slide into those one-day bangers harder than Drake slides into DM’s.
We’ve covered five of the absolute best fests that Australia has to offer so you can spend less time googling and more time sayin’ Thank U, Next to last year’s festival outfits.
#1 Beyond The Valley
If Triple J is your jam and you love listening to everything from the sultry sounds of Tash Sultana to the wicked garage-band thrash vibes of DZ Deathrays, Beyond the Valley is for you. This massive four-dayer showcases the absolute best from the international music scene with a tonne of homegrown heroes thrown in to create a hectic lineup sure to please any music fan.
Held across the New Year period in balmy Victoria, the 60-foot main stage and massive dance tent are sure to keep things steamy well into the night. Beyond the Valley goes beyond the festival this year with a sculpture garden, art installations, morning yoga classes, and enough food and drink trucks to keep even the hungriest festival goer sated.
If you’re planning to head to Beyond the Valley, it’s well worth it to purchase an Electric City camping pass to add a little extra to your camping experience and keep those beers frosty for the entire four days. While camping is free for all ticket-holders, if you’re not the outdoorsy type and prefer privacy to portaloos, Beyond the Valley also offers Luxury Camping passes for exclusive access to Lakeside camping spots, a village bar, and premium toilet and shower facilities.
#2 Field Day
Save your hangovers for 2019 because Field Day is here to bring the kind of party you won’t want to miss. This one-day festival is held annually in The Domain in Sydney, and this year’s lineup features some banger names including Cardi B, Migos, Chvrches, and Fisher. Lauded as the right way to celebrate NYE, with the lineup they’re bringing this year they may just be right. Cardi B and Migos kick off their Australian tours by headlining not one, but two festivals so Aussies from coast to coast have the chance to carve it up.
Kick-starting your new year with Field Day sounds like a ripper of an idea, but get your sickie story straight as the festival falls on a Tuesday. If your boss is anything like ours, wrangle your way out of a Wednesday workday too because the festival is notorious for searing temperatures and dizzying dance moves that require a little extra recovery time. While they do provide free water, the venue is strictly no BYO and that includes reusable or unsealed bottles of any kind.
While this kind of militant nimby rule-shit is par for the course at most outdoor events, Field Day has created such a stellar line-up they can almost be forgiven for the deluge of empty plastic bottles left in their wake. If you’re one for resolutions, start your 2019 off right with Field Day and smack that dusty NYE hangover straight off your damn face.
Never to be outdone by Cardi B, FOMO has grabbed undoubtedly one of the hottest names in mainstream music for the past ten years - Nicki Minaj. Headlining all the FOMO shows across Australia and New Zealand, Nicki Minaj is joined by an absolute barrage of names that reads like a who’s who of the international music scene. January has never looked better as this traveling circus makes its way across Aus to leave nothing but glitter and killer memories in its wake.
Adelaide, Brisbane, Auckland, Melbourne, Perth, and Sydney will get to experience the FOMO in all of its glory by day OR night, so even if your boss is a d*ck you’ll still get the chance to cut some shapes well into the AM. Literally the only thing better than the lineup is when the acts don’t clash, so if you’re a one stage lurker FOMO has you covered with a seamless setlist guaranteed to make you wet. With sweat from dancing so much, obvs.
Food, music, and the chance to potentially see Cardi B try a repeat of the iconic NYFW shoe throw with a down under twist are all great reasons to hit up FOMO this summer. The only thing better is that a percentage of every ticket sale goes towards supporting music charity Heaps Decent and all of their heaps good causes. What are you waiting for?
#4 Rainbow Serpent
Undoubtedly the birthing place of doof culture, Rainbow Serpent is a festival for the aspirational class. No, not that middle-class catchphrase bullshit Forbes spews out, but the aspirational ideals of thousands of like-minded doofers coming together for one unbridled celebration of culture.
Combining, music, art, inclusivity, and expression, Rainbow Serpent has long led the way for doofers across the world to follow the light and be who they truly want to be. Rainbow Serpent is so much more than just your average music festival. To get an idea of the scale of the festival you’d need several days and a high-powered drone to even begin to capture all of the intricacies Rainbow Serpent contains.
2019’s Rainbow Serpent features a village, a playground, a marketplace, expansive camping grounds, art installations, gardens, kids spaces, aboriginal camps, five separate stages for every music genre you could possibly imagine, and a whole bundle of extras we can’t even list purely for space reasons.
Taking place from the 25-28 January in country Victoria, if you’re planning on attending Rainbow Serpent you’re going to need camping gear, a sober driver, and an open mind to experience this festival in all its glory.
#5 Ultra Festival
Making its Aussie debut for the first time in 2019, Ultra Festival is one hell of an EDM gig that any fan of the genre won’t want to miss. Usually held in sunny Miami, Ultra has landed in Australia and while the full lineup isn’t officially announced yet (as of Dec 10), what little names have leaked have fans frothing at the mouth.
Adam Beyer, Marshmello, Martin Garrix, and The Chainsmokers are all massive international acts that have been played on repeat in Aussie households, and now they’re coming to blast your face off IRL.
Having already conquered the overseas market, Ultra Music Festivals are sure to deliver one hell of a show for their two major festivals held in Melbourne and Sydney on the 23rd and 24th February 2019. Known for spectacular laser shows, pyrotechnics, and gathering some surprising lineups of EDM artists from across the globe, UMF has been delivering banging one-dayers for years and we couldn’t be more excited that us Aussies finally made the cut.
While many things have been rumoured for the dates, our best guess is that Ultra is about to drop a whammy if their “Road to Ultra” was any indication of what we can expect when they bring their fest to the land down under. If you bring the vegemite sandwiches, they’ll bring the thunder and we’ll all wait eagerly in anticipation for updates.
Much love <3,
Doof Store xox