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7 Music Festivals In The Region To Check Out


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Now that Laneway Festival Singapore 2014 is finished and done, there's going to be some withdrawal symptoms for those who went. If not, well you'd probably be keen to know what's the next happening thing going on. For Singapore itself, that's easy. There is going to be the ultra hip Hostess Club Weekender featuring favourite gloom rock band The National, cinematic post-rock Glaswegians - Mogwai and more. Then there is the kick ass Singapore Rock Festival with some solid acts of the genre like Korn, Alterbridge, and Rob Zombie, but if you're looking for something classier, check out the Singapore Jazz Festival and Mosaic Fest for contemporary acts. Pretty exciting times for our city-state.

If you're contented to stay on the island, that's fine but we urge you to check out some of these other equally exciting (if not more!) festivals happening just around the corner from us. Besides, post Chinese New Year, New Year, and other assorted public holidays, ticket prices won't cost as much as the peak period deals. If you're game and ready to pack your bags, here's a list of festivals taking place around the region to fill that hole in your heart shaped like a um, festival. 


Soundwave Festival | 22 Feb - 3 March (Australia)

Dubbed Australia's king of the music festival, Soundwave have consistently emerged as the biggest and best-run festival Down Under. Showcasing in most major states in Australia, you can take your pick from sunny Perth to cultural Melbourne. Bonus point, they're always running sideshows for specific artists so you can always catch your favourite headliner or act AGAIN. 

Music: Punk, Rock, Metal, Hardcore - a smorgasbord of heavy-hitters

Vibes: Loud, expect head banging, crowd surfing, stage diving, leave hipster headgear (i.e. Red Indian feathers, cat ears, flowers in hair) at home

Highlights: In the past years Linkin Park, The Offspring, Metallica have performed - definitely nostalgia central for the 90s kid


Java Jazz Festival | 28 Feb - 2 March (Jakarta, Indonesia)

Arguably the biggest and best jazz festivals in these parts, Java Jazz has a huge following. Always ahead of the pack by bringing in some of the prominent names in jazz and contemporary music such as James Brown, Stevie Wonder and Herbie Hancock - it is no wonder people from all over have travelled to Jakarta just for the festival. 

Music: Jazz obviously, contemporary music, Blues, local Indonesian acts

Vibes: Bit dressy, classy, leave your grubby sneakers and ratty t-shirt at home

Highlights: You can find Natalie Cole, Chuck Loeb, Dave Koz, Jamie Cullum and India Arie on the line-up this year


Good Life Under 18 Music Festival | 28 Feb - 9 March (Australia)

This one is an interesting one of you're young. Young, specifically, not young at heart. Strictly for those aged 13-17, Good Life boasts a pretty amazing electronic centric line-up such as Deadmau5, Macklemore & Ryan Lewis, and Rudimental. 

Music: Electronic, Techno, Pop

Vibes: Electro-rave party with fun rides and bouncy castles, inflatable slides 

Highlights: Last year PSY performed for some teens. Cool. 


Golden Plains | 8-10 March (Meredith, Australia)

Note that because everything is topsy turvy in Australia, autumn falls in March. Staged in the most 'stable' season that is fall, Golden Plains is held on private farmland in Victoria (closest city: Melbourne). Although it is good ol' camping festival, Golden Plains has a non-commercial ethos so you see none of those flashy ads around.

Music: Indie, Electronic, Hip Hop, Acoustic - something for everyone

Vibes: Chill, home away from home, camp anywhere, bring anything you want, BYO alcohol, on the farmland

Highlights: They have a strict 'No Dickheads' policy


Future Music Festival Asia | 13-15 March (Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia)

Always ahead of the festival pack in SEA, Future Music Festival Asia this year boasts a massive line-up and will be held on the Bukit Jalil Stadium grounds (all around, even the carpark). This hybrid festival has had the likes of PSY, Fun., Bloc Party, The Prodigy, Chemical Brothers and more on their line-up before and is set to host the biggest turnout yet this year. Plus, KL is only a bus ride away...

Music: Electronic, Pop, Grammy winners, be prepared to dance, dance, dance

Vibes: It's Safari themed this year so 'nuff said. Hint: it's going to be pretty wild

Highlights: Hey look, some Grammy Winners Pharell Williams and Macklemore & Ryan Lewis


Bluesfest | 17-21 April (Byron Bay, Australia)

Held over the long Easter break in Australia, the Byron Bay Bluesfest has always been one to look forward to in the region. Set in the very beautiful and scenic Byron Bay, the music is only a bonus. To say it is the Woodstock of Australia is probably a little too ambitious but it definitely feels close to that. 

Music: Blues, Folk, Indie, Acoustic, the occasional mega headliner 

Vibes: Very chill, BYO chairs, you'll be surrounded by music fanatics of all ages, even child-friendly

Highlights: This year they have John Mayer, Jeff Beck, The Dave Matthews Band, Iron & Wine, Devendra Banhart, Allen Stone, Jake Bugg, Buddy Guy, Edward Sharpe and The Magnetic Zeroes - pretty star studded


Rainforest World Music Festival | 20-22 June (Kuching, Malaysia)

This is pretty unique event held at the Sarawak Cultural Village, between the base of Mount Santubong and a beach, and manages to attract an international audience each year. The use of acoustic traditional instruments are also emphasised so you can be sure that this is no headbanging affair. 

Music: Contemporary world music, world fusion, traditional music

Vibes: ~Worldly~

Highlights: The great views and crowd interaction is encouraged


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