Once in a year the ghosts of Norwegian capital Oslo’s founding fathers get awakened by a great mass of people dancing to the soundtrack of the summer: This strange spectacle is called Øya Festival and will take place for the eleventh time from August 10 to 14 at the Medieval Park, a garden of history-charged ruins surrounded by the beautiful Oslo Fjord and the city’s skyline.
Here and at 30 different clubs in the near more than 200 live acts will perform at one of the – in terms of line-up – best music festivals around. And this edition will be honoured by live appearances of a bunch of legendary acts. So we hope, that Iggy & the Stooges will immortal underground hits like “I Wanna Be Your Dog” and “Gimme Danger” as well as “Search & Destroy” to Scandinavia. The US punk heroes are accompanied from Britain by the Modfather Paul Weller and Ska legends the Specials. Too, the genius behind Afrobeat, Tony Allen (currently well-known for his collaboration The Good, The Bad & The Queen with Damon Albarn and Paul Simonon), will come to Oslo and so will the re-united Pavement and the never-ending, spaced-out mega music circus that are Wayne Coyne and his Flaming Lips.
Speaking about living (US) legends: How, if not legendary, are the rap skills of OUTKAST’s Big Boi and Wu-Tangger Raekwon? Øya is also taking care of sophisticated rap fans and is doing that, not only by booking the two US heavyweight champions, but South Africa’s new global Zef sensation Die Antwoord and the by now highly controversial British rapper M.I.A., who’s riding the waves of anger with her brilliant “Born Free” and the ones of joy with super pop single “XOXX” at the same time.
And Øya could turn out to be a little family meeting for Mathangi Arulpragasam, since Sleigh Bells of her own N.E.E.T. Recordings label and ex-boyfriend and part-time producer Diplo with his fantastic collective project Major Lazer will play as well. They are one of our personal festival recommendations as well as the mind-breaking US boys of Yeasayer, moving UK trio The XX (see here for our interview), French cosmic popper Air (interview), Animal Collective’s Noah Lennox’ solo project Panda Bear and fantastic, but dark psych rockers The Black Angels, who are building up the festival’s rock front together with Norwegian icons Motorpsycho (performing their epochal 1994er album Timothy’s Monster) and Canada’s Fucked Up!.
But back to the girl power: Besides M.I.A., there will also be a strong pop fraction consisting three of best young talents (and voices) in the game. Just returned, body-talking Swedish fembot Robyn will bring her 2010er anthem “Dancing On My Own” on stage and UK pop wonders La Roux (interview) and Marina Lambrini Diamandis alias Marina & The Diamonds will try to steal her the show.
Need more convincing reasons for a trip to Norway in August? What about The National, Sigur Ros’ Jónsi, Girls, Surfer Blood, Ariel Pink? All really enjoyable acts. And there’s some Broken Bells and Miike Snow live action for you, too.
Finally dance music fans will get their money’s worth with probably the last gig ever on Norwegian ground, that James Murphy will play as LCD Soundsystem, and with Øya Nightime, the club program the festival will held at various clubs after outdoor events take a break for the night. Here the great likes of Jamie XX (Jamie von the The XX’ dubstep solo project), Hyperdub‘s Darkstar, Four Tet and The Whip will play some hot sets subsequent to daytime sets by Norwegian disco heads Lindstrøm & Christabelle or diskJokke (playing with Gamelan).
Oh and yeah, of course there will be quite a few other native acts from all different genres at Øya. So we picked two bands from Norwegian music scene’s spare head: number one is electro-pop act Pow Pow and number two Okkultokrati, who appear to have all the necessary features a really good metal band needs to have (interesting aesthetics for instance). Check them out, if you like.
A ticket for the entire festival costs about € 250 or £ 205. One-day or two-day tickets are available for smaller amounts. Check the official ticket site for bookings here. See the festival’s website here and the full line-up below.
Full Festival Line-up:
1349, Against Me!, Air, Altaar, Ariel Pink (performing Haunted Grafitti), Baroness, Big Boi, The Black Angels, Blood Command, Broken Bells, Camp Sounds, Casiokids, CCTV, Converge, The Cumshots, Cymbals Eat Guitars, Die Antwoord, diskJokke + Gamelan, Djerv, Field Music, The Flaming Lips, Fool’s Gold, Fucked Up, The Gaslight Anthem, Girls, Iggy & The Stooges, Imperial State Electric, Ingeborg Selnes, Ingrid Olava, Invasion, John Olav Nilsen og Gjengen, Jónsi, Karpe Diem, Kenneth Ishak & The Freedom Machines, King Midas Sound, Kråkesølv, La Roux, Lars Vaular, LCD Soundsystem, LidoLido, Lillebjørn Nilsen, Lindstrøm & Christabelle, Local Natives, Lucy Swann, M.I.A., Major Lazer, Marina & The Diamonds, The Megaphonic Thrift, Mhoo, Miike Snow, Motorpsycho (performing Timothy’s Monster), The National*, Navigators, Necessary, Obliteration, Okkultokrati, Oslo Ess, Ost & Kjex, Panda Bear, Paul Weller, Pavement, Pow Pow, Purified In Blood, Raekwon, Robyn, Rubik, Serena Maneesh, Shining, Sleepy Sun, Sleigh Bells, Social Suicide, The Specials, Surfer Blood, Susanne Sundfør, Team Me, Thom Hell, Todd Terje & Dølle Jølle, Tony Allen, Torgny, Trash Talk, Tune-Yards, Wardruna, The XX, Yeasayer , Youth Pictures Of Florence Hendersom
Darkstar, Diplo, Eskimo, Four Tet, Jamie XX, Get Dancy, Kyle Hall, Kumar, Omar-S, Øyvind Morken, Punani SS Soundsystem, Sommerstad, Telephones & Chmmr, The Whip