From comebacks to future headliners...
No sooner have you removed the last hardened patch of mud from your wellies, than 2018’s festival season is getting into first gear. Only a small number of fests have started showing their hands, and we still don’t know any names for Coachella, Reading + Leeds, Governor’s Ball or Isle of Wight. However, a few acts have been announced from festivals like Melt, NorthSide and Roskilde. Already, there are signs of long-awaited comebacks, exciting new festivals and future headliners. Here’s what we’ve learned so far:
1. Florence + the Machine is back!
The last we heard of Florence Welch, she was busy working on a new fourth album. In her spare time, she was also sharing literary tips via her book club, Between Two Books. But Florence + the Machine look set to return in 2018, having been confirmed as a headliner for Melt! Festival in Germany.
She recently told the Telegraph a new fourth album – the follow-up to 2015’s ‘How Big, How Blue, How Beautiful’ – would be more optimistic. “I’m happier now, I’m content, but I’m never going to be fixed, ever,” she said. “A lot of things almost worked for me: partying almost worked, being famous and successful almost worked, the relationship almost worked… but it won’t sustain you. These are transient things. It’s working out how to be OK regardless.”
She’s back on the festival circuit next summer, which means one of two things: she’ll either be returning with a new full-length, or at the very least, fans can expect to see her debut new tracks.
Florence + the Machine plays Melt Festival, Ferropolis, Germany from July 13-15.
2. There’s a Glastonbury-shaped hole
With Worthy Farm getting some much needed rest, 2018 is going to see other top tier festivals competing for the biggest names.
Plenty of Glasto-worthy acts have already been announced for festivals elsewhere. Bruno Mars is playing BST Hyde Park. Björk, following the release of ninth album ’Utopia’, plays London’s All Points East and NorthSide in Aarhus, Denmark.
Keep an eye out for the BBC’s new festival, The Biggest Weekend. It’s set to take place May 25-28, and it promises to bring “the biggest artists in the world to all parts of the UK with live shows in England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland.” 175,000 tickets are being sold overall, which is close to Glastonbury’s capacity. So if Taylor Swift’s going to make an appearance anywhere, it might be here.
3. Tyler, the Creator is going to be everywhere (except the UK)
Only a handful of 2018’s festivals have been announced so far. But it already looks like Tyler, the Creator’s passport is going to be getting a fair few stamps.
After releasing this year’s revelatory ‘Flower Boy’ album, he’s confirmed to play Melt Festival in Germany, NorthSide in Denmark and the South America legs of Lollapalooza.
All being well, Tyler would be playing every UK festival worth its salt. But in 2015, the ex-Odd Future rapper was banned from entering the country by then-Home Secretary Theresa May. “That fucking sucks. Y’all fucking up over there,” he responded at the time. But the ban shows no signs of lifting, so you’ll need to catch a flight to see him live next year.
4. London could be the place to be for festivals
Victoria Park is London’s go-to gigantic field for big festivals. Next year, it’s playing host to a new fest, All Points East, and it sounds huge.
Running May 25-June 3, All Points East has already announced Lorde (above), Björk, The National, LCD Soundsystem, The xx, Yeah Yeah Yeahs and Phoenix.
Meanwhile, Field Day is upping sticks from east London to a brand new, as-yet-unannounced location. BST Hyde Park promises to be bigger than ever. Lovebox will be aiming to top last year’s huge names (Frank Ocean, Solange and Jamie xx). And Wireless, Citadel, Visions and Mirrors are all competing to be cream of the capital’s festival crop.
5. Michael Bublé isn’t just for Christmas
The king of seasonal swing usually only shows his face in winter. But Bublé’s been confirmed for a summer gig, of all things. He’s one of three headliners announced so far for London’s BST Hyde Park.
In what will be his biggest ever UK show, he could end up singing ‘It’s Beginning To Look a Lot Like Christmas’ to thousands of sunburnt fans in the middle of July. What a moment that would be.
If Bublé isn’t your cup of eggnog, BST has also confirmed Roger Waters and Bruno Mars, the latter being joined by fast-rising R&B talent Khalid.