Dates: 8th – 10th August 2013
Location: Gothenburg, Sweden
Line Up: The Knife / Kendrick Lamar / James Blake / Solange / Local Natives / Tame Impala / Beach House / Disclosure / Danny Brown
Why Go? To attend two festivals for the price of one, hear cutting-edge electro and hip hop in Sweden’s finest park, then head into the heart of the metropolis for even more aural treats.
The scenic and cobalt-skied city of Gothenburg makes for a perfect place to spend the summer. Balmy aired, the second largest city in Sweden is lined with parks and outdoor cafes, along with plenty of cultural pursuits. Come nightfall, its hip ‘n happening centre spills over with clubs, bars and, naturally, cutting-edge music. Which makes it the ideal location for a world-class festival in August.
The site of Slottsskogen (which for all those non-Swedish speakers translates to ‘the Castle’s Forest’) will act as the lush grassy grounds to the three-day event. Lengthened from two to three days last year to accommodate all the artists, WOW is now bigger and better than ever.
Local electronic duo The Knife have selected Way Out West as their only Swedish festival date this year. Having recently sold out their two Stockholm shows in under a minute, the performance from the electronic duo is set to be unmissable. Also bolstering the stellar lineup is soul queen Solange, the garage-house duo who have successfully brought intelligent bass music into the mainstream – Disclosure, indie rock’s Local Natives and Aussie psych-rockers Tame Impala, riding the rainbow-coloured wave of success from their hugely-acclaimed LP ‘Lonerism’.
Further electronic acts to catch include the post-apocalyptic Godspeed You! Black Emperor who’ll be bringing a thundering cacophony to rattle the trees of Slottsskogen, along with Vienna’s sumptuous synth producer Sohn. Hip-hop and rap will also be taking centre stage, with the platinum rapper of 2012 studding the lineup - Kendrick Lamar, whose ‘Good Kid, m.A.A.d city’ made any Best Of list of last year worth reading. In addition, the missing-toothed Danny Brown will be bringing his raw ADHD energy to Sweden’s finest park.
Any fans of the two leading ladies in hip-hop right now might raise their eyebrows on noticing Angel Haze and Azealia Banks’s names side by side on the line-up. The two acts, making routine news for beefing continuously on twitter and putting out diss tracks, will both be performing at the same festival. So it’ll be interesting to see how that pans out…
And if the festival wasn’t enough, the three-dayer spiders out into the already-thriving music scene of Gothenburg, to Stay Out West - the festival’s concept event. A wristband guarantees entry into the city’s various venues and club shows, essentially meaning that you get two festivals for the price of one. And, of course, the opportunity to party in the heart of the Scandinavian metropolis. Activating the city’s existing infrastructure and excellent transport system to make way for avid festival-goers, the vibrant centre will prepare to get even more vibrant.
Not only is the festival housed in a stunningly green location, its organisers have prioritised sustainability as their message. So there’ll be no guilty feelings about making merriment in a locale full of nature and wildlife, as the environment has always been a special focus for the festival. With widespread recycling, an efficient use of resources and organic cuisine, it’ll leave the grounds exactly as they are – and most importantly, ready and waiting for next year…