When: 1st-2nd July
Price: £106 (incl. camping)
Headliners: Dizzee Rascal, Everything Everything
Through the years, Blissfields has become an essential event within the UK festival calendar. A low-key weekend event based in rural Hampshire, Blissfields has been quietly operating since as early as 2001. Renowned for its easy-going and welcoming aura, the two-day festival is a get-together that particularly attracts families, with attractions and facilities laboured over for all walks of life.
This year, Blissfield’s event-defining theme is ‘House Party’, and with that comes their ‘biggest art installation/venue crossover ever’. ‘Your inner child has been given the keys to Blissfields – under one condition – you absolutely have to throw a party. Bring your sleeping bag, PJs and mixtapes to the biggest house party of 2016. Channelling the spirit of National Lampoons and Dr. Frank N. Furter via the Bratpack, 1990’s and Skins, we’ve smudged the eras into the party at the end of the universe.’
Besides the enthralling theme, the stage and set designs at Blissfields are some of the most elaborate around. Take The Hidden Hedge for example, an area of the festival that won the ‘Most Unique Festival Arena In The UK’ award. Featuring secret entrances, chill-out zones, fire-pits, and elaborate art installations, The Hidden Hedge is one of the best examples of Blissfields’ celebrated individualism and creativity. Other arenas to explore are the all-things-aucostic The Larch, as well as the beach emulating, and new for 2016- The Bay.
The festival itself aside, musically, this is one of the biggest lineups in Blissfields’ history. Headlining in 2016, are one of the UK’s greatest rap talents- Dizzee Rascal, and celebrated four-piece rock group Everything Everything. Also on offer are some of the electronic music scene’s most reliable names, including one of the original junglists Shy FX, the godfather of drum and bass Roni Size, ska-dub crossovers Dub Pistols, the up-and-coming favourite DJ Barely Legal, and the all-energy Serial Killerz. Other unmissable names at Blissfields include psychedelic favourites Swim Deep, and hypnotic vocalist Frances, who recently received a nod for BBC’s Sound of 2016.
Blissfields 2016 was one of the first festivals I booked my place at. Despite being around for a while, now it’s really starting to push into the essential bracket of festivals, and 2016’s looking like it could be the best one yet. The elaborate criss crossing of the art forms, celebrated in the rural tree-dotted Hampshire, is a diamond combination for a festival on at the peak of the British summer time. If this wasn’t enough to convince you, a ticket including camping is yours for a measly £105.