Twelve Must-See International Music Festivals of 2012
Music festival-goers are in for an epic International circuit in 2012. This year, music festivals all across the globe have put forth some of the best lineups yet. From Pearl Jam and Red Hot Chili Peppers at Rock Werchter to Lenny Kravitz at Rock in Rio-Lisbon, 2012 is shaping up to be a history-making year. From Europe to South America to Asia, each festival along the way will vary in some shape or form. However one thing will remain constant throughout – fans will not be disappointed. It’s time to party.
Here’s this years list of the 12 can’t-miss international music festivals:
Info: Located at a ski resort on the top of a glacier, Snowbombing is an exhilarating week-long blizzard of brilliant musicians and world class DJs in the chocolate box alpine setting of Mayrhofen, Austria. This not-your-average-run-of-the-mill festival isn’t for the passive party-goer. Snowbombing replaces tents with saunas and invites skiers and boarders alike to tear through it’s award-winning terrain park. After a blistering event in 2011, Snowbombing is regarded by many as, ‘The Greatest Show on Snow’. It’s an unique, thrilling celebration that everyone should experience, over and over again. Make sure to pack your party pants for this one.
Location: Mayrhofen, Austria
Dates: April 9-14, 2012
2012 Headliners: Snoop Dogg, Example, DJ Shadow, The Vaccines, Fat Boy Slim
Official Website: Snowbombing 2012
Info: Exit is the largest music festival in South Eastern Europe. This annual 4-day summer festival is held at a picturesque 18th century fortress in Novi Sad, Serbia. Started by local University students, Exit delivers top-notch entertainment from around the world to the Serbian youth. This gem of a festival covers all genres and will keep the party going through the night.
Location: Novi Sad, Serbia
Dates: July 12-15, 2012
2012 Headliners: New Order, Buraka Som Sistema, Luciano, Reboot, Robert Dietz, Kenny Larkin
Official Website: Exit Festival
T in the Park
Info: Since the inaugural festival in 1994, which featured artists Cypress Hill, Rage Against The Machine and Blur, T in the Park has been a favorite destination for artists and fans across the globe. TITP has grown in size and influence to become one of the most important and critically acclaimed music events on the international festival circuit.
Location: Balado, Kinross-shire, Scotland
Dates: July 6-8, 2012
2012 Headliners: TBD [2011 headliners included: Coldplay, Beyonce, Bright Eyes, Foo Fighters, Deadmau5]
Official Website: T in the Park
Info: As the largest music festival in Northern Europe, Roskilde and built a reputation for spotlighting top-tier artists for over three decades running – Legends such as Bob Marley, Bob Dylan, U2 and Jay-Z have all graced the stage at Roskilde. This year, once more, the festival will feature a star-studded lineup. With minimum one-hour sets for smaller stages and 90-minute sets for the main stage, the music is truly the centerpiece of this festival. If there was ever a moment to make a trip to Denmark, this is it.
Location: Roskilde, Denmark
Dates: July 5-8, 2012
2012 Headliners: The Roots, Wiz Khalifa, Bruce Springsteen & The E Street Band, The Cure, Bjork
Official Website: Roskilde Festival
Info: There’s a reason why Rock Werchter was crowned ‘Best European Festival Line-Up’ at the European Festival Awards earlier this year. With only a small portion of the lineup released thus far, it was still plenty for officials to determine it as the best of 2012. With more-than-familiar names that include Pearl Jam, Red Hot Chili Petters and Snow Patrol, there’s not doubt Werchter is gearing up to be a wild ride.
Location: Werchter, Belgium
Dates: June 28 – July 1, 2012
2012 Headliners: Pearl Jam, Red Hot Chili Peppers, Snow Patrol, Wiz Khalifa, Florence & the Machine, Skrillex, Deadmau5, Blink-182
Official Website: Rock Werchter
Info: If last year’s lineup is any indication of what’s to come in 2012, then don’t hesitate to make plans to attend Electric Picnic. A lineup that featured Arcade Fire, Pulp, Interpol and Santigold, brought in the largest crowd in EP history in 2011. Described by Billboard magazine as “a magnificent rock n roll circus,” Electric Picnic is a mid-sized festival with major-festival ‘cahones.’
Location: Dublin, Ireland
Dates: September 2-4, 2012
2012 Headliners: TBD [2011 headliners included: Arcade Fire, Pulp, Interpol, The Chemical Brothers, Flying Lotus, Santigold, Beirut, Public Enemy]
Official Website: Electric Picnic
Rock in Rio(RIR) – Lisbon/Madrid/Rio de Janeiro
Info: Rock in Rio is a series of music festivals held across three cities: Rio de Janeiro in Brazil, Lisbon in Portugal and Madrid in Spain. The three shows combine to bring in over 1 million attendees annually, making RIR the largest festival series in the world. While the lineup for Rio de Janeiro has yet to be released, the two sisters show have leaked a few big-named studs (see 2012 Headliners section below).
Location: Lisbon, Portugal/ Madrid, Spain/ Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
Dates: May – July [official dates TBD]
2012 Headliners: [Lisbon – Lenny Kravitz, Maroon 5, Ivete Sangalo][Madrid – Red Hot Chili Peppers, Incubus, Deadmau5]
Official Website: Rock in Rio
Info: Tomorrowland is the ultimate dance party, plain and simple. Held in the appropriately named town of Boom(Belgium), this 3-day fest will challenge even the toughest of partiers – The festival still has a long ways to go to complete this years lineup. However, so far so good. With the addition of Avicii, Deadmau5 and David Guetta in recent days, the festival is surely a can’t-miss event.
Location: Boom, Belgium
Dates: July 27-29, 2012
2012 Headliners: David Guetta, Avicii, Deadmau5, Fatboy Slim, Jamie Jones
Official Website: Tomorrowland 2012
Bilbao BBK Live Festival
Info: The Bilbao Live Festival has grown bigger in size and reputation during it’s brief history. Since it’s sudden emergence in 2006, Bilbao has looked out for the interest of music fans of every genre. With each passing year, this dynamic festival has displayed unforgettable performances from the likes of Coldplay, Metallica, R.E.M., Lenny Kravitz, and many more – The 2012 lineup is just as note-worthy, with Radiohead and The Cure topping the list.
Location: Bilbao, Spain
Dates: July 12-14, 2012
2012 Headliners: Radiohead, The Cure, Snow Patrol, Klaxons, Noah And The Whale
Official Website: Bilbao BBK Live
Info: Following 15 years of silence, Manchester’s legendary, The Stone Roses will reunite to headline at the Sziget Festival in summer of 2012 – This, paired with the recent crowning of the ‘Best European Major Festival,’ will make Sziget a prime destination for international festival-hoppers. Its multi-genre, multi-art program and the large number of venues set Sziget up to be a colorful, cultural event with brilliant music.
Location: Obudai Island, Budapest, Hungary
Dates: August 6-13, 2012
2012 Headliners: The Stone Roses, Crystal Fighters, Placebo, The Horrors, Subways
Official Website: Sziget
Info: As the one of the most renowned music festival in Asia, Summer Sonic is the ultimate all-around experience . This festival is not afraid to scour all corners of the world to produce only the best collection of artists. At one time or another, all of the biggest house-hold names in the music industry have passed through Summer Sonic – a list that includes artists like Jay-Z, Stevie Wonder, A Tribe Called Quest, Coldplay, Weezer – And with vibrant settings like Tokyo and Osaka, Japan, there’s no way you wont have the time of your life.
Location: Osaka, Japan
Dates: August 18-19, 2012
2012 Headliners: TBD [2011 headliners included: The Strokes, Mars Volta, Panic! At The Disco, James Blunt, Korn]
Official Website: Summer Sonic
Main Square Festival
Info: Located in Arras, France, the crossroads between Brussels, Paris and London, the Main Square Festival is literally at the heart of the European festival circuit. Coming off a 2011 show that featured Coldplay and Arcade Fire, Main Square has successfully reloaded for 2012. Some of the early names released include Pearl Jam and Justice, with plenty more yet to come. This festival is just another reason to pack your bags and head to the quaint French countryside for some electric relaxation.
Location: Arras, France
Dates: June 28 – July 1, 2012
2012 Healdiners: Pearl Jam, Justice, Florence & the Machine, Metronomy
Official Website: Main Square Festival
Also, check out these international festivals:
Wireless Festival (London, England)
I Love Techno (Ghent, Belgium)
Inmusic Festival (Zagreb, Croatia)
Ibiza Rocks (San Antonio, Ibiza)
Pinkpop (Landgraaf, The Netherlands)
FIB (Benicassim, Spain)
Soundwave Festival (Various locations in Australia)
Hove Festival (Tromoy Island, Norway)
Dour Festival (Dour, Belgium)
Fuji Rock (Niigata, Japan)
Oya Festival (Oslo, Norway)
Sweden Rock Festival (Solvesborg, Sweden)
Latest posts by Gurvinder Singh (see all)
- ‘Safe House’ Review: A Safe Bet - March 2, 2012
- Twelve Must-See International Music Festivals of 2012 - February 20, 2012
- ‘More Than A Game’ Review: Inside Lebron’s Mind - January 30, 2012