111 days til Roadburn (at least at time of writing)! As a new year approaches, it’s time to start getting excited about one of the world’s best and most respected festivals. Taking place from April 11th to 14th in the humble Dutch town of Tilburg is the latest edition of the mighty Roadburn festival. It is a gathering that constantly strives to outdo its previous incarnations. It affords artists the real creative freedom they desire and deserve, and as such Roadburn is understandably beloved by performers and patrons alike. As Jacob Bannon said in Never Mind the Hype’s 2018 Roadburn documentary, it’s not so much a festival as ‘a happening’. Trying to summarise the impact and gravitas of the event is nigh on impossible. It has to be seen, felt and experienced to be believed.
Following on from a long list of prestigious curators, most recently including Jacob Bannon, John Dyer Baizley and Lee Dorian, 2019’s phenomenal line up is meticulously assembled by Tomas Lindberg of At The Gates fame. Hot on the heels of their latest phenomenal release, To Drink From the Night Itself, it only makes sense that such a well lauded luminary of death metal should be privileged enough to craft the festival. The line up’s quality is unparalleled, so let’s dive in.
Headlining the festival will be bong metal legends, Sleep. With the unforeseen surprise release of The Sciences on 4/20 (just blaze), the band reminded the world just why they are so intrinsic and essential to the fabric of heavy music. The band will be treating the attendees of the hallowed grounds to two full album performances; one of their latest opus, and a rendition of their now classic album Sleep’s Holy Mountain. Performing in a country in which their muse is legal promises an astounding and life affirming showing from the Californian three piece, and the sweet smell of Mary Jane will only add to the wondrous music they have created.
Also performing across the weekend will be the legendary At The Gates. The band will be performing an as yet undisclosed set – fingers and toes crossed for Slaughter of the Soul in full – but regardless, it will be a showing of some of the finest death metal ever created. Tomas Lindberg’s curation of the festival alongside his performance promises that the weekend will be cohesively challenging and rewarding in equal measure.
The festival has grown organically since 1999. Through fan and artist support it now stands as a bastion to all things brilliant and different in the world of music. What better way to confirm this aesthetic than to have a healthy showing from the UK’s most important and best (FACT) DIY record label, Holy Roar Records. Appearing on Friday 12th April on Holy Roar’s behalf will be A.A. Williams, Conjurer, Pijn, Secret Cutter and Svalbard. 5 tremendous acts all paving the way for the future of their respective genres, it promises to be a showcase of the best of British.
The rest of the line up should leave any fan of intelligent and interesting music salivating as there is a plethora of amazing acts. Featuring across the weekend alongside Sleep, At The Gates and the Holy Roar showing will be Agrimonia, Anna Von Hausswolff, Bellrope, Birds In Row, Black Bombaim and Peter Brötzmann, Bliss Signal, Bossk, CAVE, Cave In, Confusion Master, Conny Ochs, Crippled Black Phoenix, Crypt Trip, Daughters, Deaf Kids, Drab Majesty, Emma Ruth Rundle, Fear Falls Burning, Gold, Gore, Gösta Berlings Saga, Have a Nice Life, Heilung, Henrik Palm, Imperial Triumphant, Jaye Jayle, Lingua Ignota, LOOP, Louise Lemón, Malokarpatan, Marissa Nadler, Messa, Midnight, Molasses, MONO and the Jo Quail Quartet, Mord’A’Stigmata, Morne, Myrkur: Folkesange, Mythic Sunship, Noisepicker, Old Man Gloom, Orchestra of Constant Distress, Ostinato, Ovtrenoir, Petbrick, Rakta, Seven That Spells, Sherpa, Slægt, Soft Kill, Stuck in Motion, Sumac, Territoire, The End, Thou, Throane, Treedeon, Treha Sektori, Triptykon/Metropole Orkest: Requiem, Ulcerate, Vile Creature, Wolvennest and Young Widows. If that doesn’t whet your appetite, you need your ears checking.
Roadburn Festival will take place from April 11th to April 14th 2019 in Tilburg.