Actually, looking again, it a shame that the festival list is not more exhaustive. It is much too limited to the big commercial outfits. What about the local ones? Is there more information on the way? TIME OUT used to be famous for its listings - what is happening? Who took it over? It makes it far less authoritative, and far less interesting. Just another tourist mag in fact.
Music festivals calendar: July
The capital comes to life this month as Lovebox and Wireless bring the party to London's parks
'Tis the season to sip warm cider and enjoy live music in a field. Yes, festival season is upon us and to help you plan your summer we've rounded-up all of this year's offerings in one seriously handy calendar. Whether you're after a week-long getaway or whether you're after inspiration for one of the upcoming long weekends, our 2014 festivals calendar has all the dates you need for your diary this summer.
Music festivals in July 2014: our picks
Still one of the finest boutique efforts in London, catering for cool kids and party monsters, Lovebox returns
- Victoria Park Victoria Park Rd, E3 5SN
- Fri Jul 18 - Sat Jul 19
This year's Wireless will play host to an eyepopping line-up of hip hop and R&B royalty: Kanye! Drake! Pharrell! Outkast!
- Finsbury Park Seven Sisters Rd, N4 2NQ
- Fri Jul 4 - Sun Jul 6
Its fairytale setting of forest, lake and meadow, and its generally adventurous pop and alt rock line-up make Latitude a winner
- Henham Park Southwold, Suffolk, NR34 8AN
- Thu Jul 17 - Sun Jul 20
The best of the rest this July
Line-up includes TBA.
What's the deal? Despite being in its fourteenth successful year, this tiny festival remains a fiercely independent and small affair, with plenty of emerging talent on the bill and a ticket price that won't scare your wallet into sealing itself up. The 2014 ine-up hasn't been revealed yet, but leftfield pop and easygoing indie are bound to be well-represented. Last year's roster included Mystery Jets, Bastille, Dub Pistols, Theme Park, Mike Skinner and Public Service Broadcasting, so expect similar vibes this year. There will also be an attempt at the world record for 'largest gathering of people wearing animal print', so break out that zebra onesie.
Line-up includes Gregory Porter, Jamie Cullum, Laura Mvula, Soul II Soul, Polar Bear, Hidden Orchestra, Dave Holland's Prism, Snarky Puppy, Christian McBride Trio, Courtney Pine, Curtis Stigers, Alice Russell, Jose James.
What's the deal? Get your jazz, funk, blues and soul fix in the grounds of an Elizabethan manor house set in the lush Sussex South Downs countryside at this event which has been running for twenty long years. Jazz is the main player here, but there's plenty of other musically accomplished fusions taking place from a great cast of established and upcoming talents, including Gergory Porter, Laura Mvula, Soul II Soul and Polar Bear.
Line-up includes The Boomtown Rats, Heaven 17, Jason Donovan, Big Country, Toyah, Bad Manners, Boney M, 911, Imagination, Go West, Stooshe, From The Jam, China Crisis, Doctor and The Medics.
What's the deal? How chilled is Chilfest? Pretty chilled, but in more of a middle-aged let's-have-a-nice-sit-down-and-a-cuppa sense than stoner chilled or club chill-out area. Thus, many of the bands at the event – now in its second year – are likely to make punters of a certain age all misty-eyed: Geldof's Boomtown Rats, Sheffield synth-poppers Heaven 17, unashamedly cheesy dance-pop act Boney M, etc. But then there's also plenty of fodder for the much, much, younger generation, in the form of boy band 5th Story from TV show 'The Big Reunion' and Amelia Lily from the 2011 run of 'The X Factor'.
Line-up includes Brian Wilson, Maximo Park, Ray Davies, Marc Almond, Midlake, Eliza Doolittle, Deacon Blue, Billy Ocean, Echo and the Bunnymen, Sophie Ellis-Bextor, Arrested Development, 10cc, Bellowhead, Paul Heaton and Jacqui Abbott, The Beat, The Family Rain, Full English, Chas & Dave, Scouting for Girls, Slow Club.
What's the deal? There's no way this won't get confusing. This is the Hop Farm Music Festival – it's a new event and not Vince Power's folksy, bluesy Hop Farm Music Festival that has been running since 2008, and which was cancelled last year. Power's Hop Farm Festival is back for 2014 but moving to a new site in Tunbridge Wells, Kent, but probably with the same name as this event – the Hop Farm Music Festival. This Hop Farm Music Festival takes place at the Hope Farm site. Got it? Nope, us neither. Anyway, all you really need to know about this HFMF is that it's a family-minded affair, with a line-up that straddles indie, pop, blues folk and singer-songwriter territory, with big names including Beach Boys genius Brian Wilson, electro-indie rockers Maximo Park and knees-up cockney geezers Chas & Dave. There's also a Jazz and Blues Lounge, comedy tent, kids' area and silent disco.
- Critics choice
Line-up includes Metallica, The Prodigy, Wilko Johnson, Iron Maiden, Limp Bizkit, Alice in Chains, Deftones, Slayer, Anthrax, Dog Eat Dog, Electric Wizard, Anti-Flag, Raging Speedhorm, Brutality Will Prevail, Empire, Reckless Love, TesseracT, The Hell, The Hype Theory, The Safety Fire.
What's the deal? The nomadic European hard rock festival returns to Knebworth – so it's time for thunderous and crushing layers of sharp-edged sonic doom, courtesy of those wild and crazy guys from Metallica – Sonisphere faves and veterans. They're playing a 'Metallica by request' set, meaning that fans can vote for the band to play their favourite songs. British metal titans Iron Maiden and pointy-haired rave-punk inciters The Prodigy also play headline slots, alongside numerous other hard and heavy acts riffing away like demons over the weekend.
- Critics choice
Line-up includes Carl Cox, Joy Orbison, Dusky, DJ Die, George Fitzgerald, Gorgon City, Route 94, Mampi Swift, Oneman, MistaJam, Ms Dynamite, Roska, Shy FX, Zinc B2B Artwork, The Martinez Brothers, Will Saul, Hannah Wants, Brockie and MC Det, B.Traits, Charlie Hedges, Jon Rundell, Ratpack.
What's the deal? A solid one-day dance-led event (last year held in northeast London, but with this year's location still under wraps), High Defintion offers some prime production talent from cutting-edge names, covering house, techno, disco and some deeper, darker dance territories. UK house hero Carl Cox is a big-name draw, alongside newer dancefloor warriors like Joy Orbison, Route and Gorgon City, some old-guard drum and bass crew (Shy FX, Zinc), and a few welcome surprises, such as revived rapper Ms Dynamite.
Line-up includes McBusted, Backstreet Boys, The Vamps, Scouting For Girls, Diversity, Lawson, Five, Neon Jungle, Elyar Fox, Ollie Marland, George Barnett, Joel Baker, Mike Dignam.
What's the deal? After a successful first run last year featuring The Rolling Stones and Lionel Richie among others, this big summer bash is back in Hyde Park, with the main events taking place on the Sunday of one weekend (that's this event) and the Saturday of the following weekend, and midweek shows between the two still TBA. Today's headliners are McBusted, the boy band BOGOF that lumps together McFly with two thirds of Busted. This unwieldy beast is joined on the bill by the Backstreet Boys (who did their own merger with New Kids On The Block a few years ago) and other easygoing, clean-cut pop types, including The Vamps, as well as moddish, fluffy indie boys Scouting For Girls and street dance troupe Diversity.
Line-up includes Dizzee Rascal, Ellie Goulding, plus more TBA.
What's the deal? If partying in a vast Cornish eco-park to big-name bands sounds like fun, hoof it down to the Eden Project for its annual Eden Sessions shows. Each night of the Sessions will feature one main act rocking the gargantuan venue's ample greenery back into the ground and a range of support acts warming up the crowd in the daytime. So far, two dates have been announced, with grime-pop scamp Dizzee Rascal and delicate disco-pop singer Ellie Goulding named as the two headliners (Goulding's show is sold out). Support acts and further dates with big-name artists still to come. Ecology has never been this much fun.
Line-up includes Dan Le Sac Vs. Scroobius Pip, Public Service Broadcasting, Dave MacPherson, Three Trapped Tigers, The Blackout, Wolf Alice, Cerebral Ballzy, Tall Ships, Canterbury, Arcane Roots, Itch, Blitz Kids, Johnny Foreigner, Darlia, Loom.
What's the deal? The rock-tastic 2000trees held their first festival in 2007 to an audience of 2,500 with the aim of providing a good, solid festival for little money. They've progressed over the years to a capacity of 5,000, and the ticket prices are still low. The 2014 line-up again features plenty of heavy rock, with indie, hip hop and alternative rock also represented.
Line-up includes Pixies, James, Royal Blood, Starsailor.
What's the deal? A new event held in Manchester's Castle Bowl, headlined by grunge-rock legends Pixies on the Thursday, as part of their continued comeback that's seen them well and truly... back. After the fuzzed-up, chugging-but-catchy riffs of Black Francis and crew on Thursday, the next evening features '90s indie-popsters James – they'll get a glorious reception from the Manchester crowd, as they're local fellas. Supporting Pixies are Brighton band Royal Blood, and noughties Starsailor warm-up for James on the Friday.
- Critics choice
Line-up includes Dan Le Sac Vs Scroobius Pip, Frightened Rabbit, MØ, Krafty Kuts, Young Fathers, Only Real, Blaenavon, Sivu, Childhood + more.
What's the deal? This intimate, independet festival in the quaint Surrey countryside was started by 16-year-old Lee Denny eight years ago in his back garden. The enterprising Denny has now turned it into a very respectable non-profit boutique event, attracting some great bands that lean towards indie and electro. Words-and-beats duo DLS vs SP headline this year, alongside majestic Scottish indie rockers Frightened Rabbit. Also well worth checking out: Danish pop singer MØ, Scottish trip hop trio Young Fathers and London shoegaze-pop band Childhood. A top line-up, and another masterclass in how you too could grow your own festival.
Line-up includes Cypress Hill, Netsky, Noisia, Funeral For a Friend, Friction and Friends featuring P Money, Roska, Dismantle, Monki, Reel Big Fish, MistaJam, DJ EZ, Black Sun Empire, Hannah Wants, Nicky Blackmarket, TC, My Nu Leng.
What's the deal? This gnarly fest aims to unite the world of extreme sports and music, in a totally radical way. Acts announced so far lean towards drum and bass, hip hop, garage and dubstep, but there's always metal, punk and ska to represent the more extreme side of guitar music. As you'd expect, there's a selection of bodacious sports displays, including BMX antics, dirt bikes and skating of all shapes and sizes, as well as rides, workshops on DJing and free-running, and a shisha bar for those who like to mellow out legally.
Line-up includes TBA.
What's the deal? The independent, eclectic and all-round enticing Festibelly returns to the New Forest for 2014! Still sticking to its 'no sponsorship; no branding' rule, Festibelly attracts a friendly crowd looking for alternative but accessible dance, indie, electro and pop, all without the commercialism of larger festivals. Arts, theatre, foodie grub, craft beer and cocktails are all to be found at Festibelly and help contribute to the boutique-y vibe of the event. Entertainment for mini-festival goers is also in plentiful supply, with various tents set up to accommodate circus performers, cabaret artists and interactive games. The 2014 line-up is still TBA, but in previous years the festival has hosted the likes of New Yong Pony Club, Ghostpoet, Gold Panda, Bastille, Drums of Death and Johnny Flynn.
- Critics choice
Line-up includes Neil Young and Crazy Horse, The National, Tom Odell, Half Moon Run, Caitlin Rose, Lucy Rose, Phospherescent, Ethan Johns, Flyte, The Webb Sisters, Jack Savoretti, To Kill a King.
What's the deal? After a successful first run last year featuring The Rolling Stones and Lionel Richie among others, this big summer bash is back in Hyde Park. This year's headliner is legendary Canadian heartland-rocker Neil Young with his long-running band Crazy Horse, performing lengthy, grungy country-rock jams and classic country-rock songs like 'Powderfinger' and 'Hey Hey, My My', all with the volume and distortion cranked up to the maximum and with Young singing like a drowning man. Also booked for this Saturday event are Ohioan rock band The National playing from 'Trouble Will Find Me', one of our favourite albums of 2013, plus Midlake, Tom Odell, Caitlin Rose, Phosphorescent, Bruno Major and Flyte.
Line-up includes Tom Jones, Frank Turner, Public Service Broadcasting, Tom Odell, Squeeze, Dreadzone, Stornoway, Staff Benda Bilili, plus more acts TBA.
What's the deal? Larmer Tree is maybe the nicest and politest festival on the circuit, catering for families and folk interested in pretty gardens rather than cutting edge rock fans. It also won Family Festival of the Year in 2008, which should give you a decent impression of its quiet and relaxed atmosphere. So far, power-voiced Welsh legend Tom Jones has been announced as a headliner, alongside sets from folk-punker Frank Turner and electronic-pop innovators Public Service Broadcasting.
Line-up includes Jack Johnson, Ben Howard, Half Moon Run, Amadou & Mariam, Fink, Bombino, Nick Mulvey Neil Halstead, Crowns, Hiss Golden Messenger, Catfish and the Bottlemen, Sierra Leone's Refugee All Stars.
What's the deal? One for anyone who fancies themselves as an outdoorsy type, Somersault advertises itself as 'a five-day summer camp of music, adventure and outdoor living'. So get your best Bear Grylls face on or grab a surfboard and max out to beardy, sun-kissed blues, folk, pop and rock, including surfer dude Jack Johnson's only UK festival performance of 2014. Workshops and activities include photography tutorials and theatre schools.
Line-up includes Happy Mondays, The Orb, The Bloody Beetroots, Boney M, Vitalic, Dub Pistols, Ibibio Sound Machine, Mr Scruff, Utah Saints, Timo Maas, Riva Star, Greg Wilson, Wolf Alice, Bipolar Sunshine, Shopping, Gorgeous George, Dems, Goldie Lookin Chain, Dub Phizix.
What's the deal? Waking up this sleepy corner of the Ribble Valley, this is a miniature rave with the focus on maximum fun. As you'd expect from the title, the emphasis is on beats, but within that spectrum there's a helluva lot going on, including ambient house from seminal duo The Orb, heavy electro from Vitalic, punky dub-reggae from Dub Pistols and nostalgic indie-dance vibes from Manchester boys Happy Mondays. Plus, you can kick back in the shisha lounge if it all gets too much.
- Critics choice
Line-up includes Hercules & Love Affair, Mount Kimbie, Scuba, Daniel Avery, Andrew Weatherall, George Fitzgerald, Gentleman's Dub Club, Waze & Odyssey, South London Ordnance, Marcus Intalex, dBridge, The Skints, Robert Owens, Pardon My French, Rosie Lowe.
What's the deal? So Farr, so good for this rising, beat-juggling boutique festival, now in its fourth year. The event is held in a deserted forest outside London (better than holding it in an inhabited forest) and showcases some of the finest underground dance talent around – the vibe is far(r) more Derrick May than David Guetta. Punters can run around from rave to rave in the woods, climbing trees and making friends with enchanted woodland creatures, possibly. Get ready to groove to deep house, debauched disco, tripped-out techno, bass and electro at one of the UK's best new dance festivals, still intimate enough to retain a friendly and fun atmosphere.
Line-up includes TBA.
What's the deal? The bank managers of festival fiends across the nation breathe a deep sigh of relief as Wickerman returns for another year - one of the few summer weekenders that manages to keep things affordable without skimping on the entertainment. The paganesque musical celebration of the classic British horror film, which was set around the same area, turns 13 this year, just to add a bit of numerical superstition to things. The bill hasn't been announced yet, but last year's event featured Primal Scream, The Enemy, Amy Macdonald and Public Service Broadcasting, so you can expect similar leftfielders this year to soundtrack the delightfully hippy-ish antics. As ever, you can guarantee that the burning of the 30ft wooden effigy will be a highlight.
Line-up includes Public Enemy, Maurice Fulton, East India Youth, Annie Mac, Katy B, Gold Panda, Toddla T, The Gaslamp Killer, Leon Vynehall, Luke Solomon, Eliphino, Levon Vincent, Denai Moore, Benji B, The Wedding Present, The Cribs, Bo Nignen, Blessa, Jamie Trench, Catfish and the Bottlemen, De Sluwe Vos, Deap Valley, Jonwayne, Lewis Watson, Menace Beach, Moko.
What's the deal? Tramlines is one of the UK's biggest inner-city musical festivals, and as ever, there's a killer bill of both dance acts and guitar-wealding bands to get stuck into at Sheffield's city-wide party. The format is similar to that of the Camden Crawl or Brighton's The Great Escape; punters purchase a ticket (for a single day or whole weekend) and then move from venue to venue, as well as bigger outdoor stages, catching as many different acts as you like. Covering house, dub, reggae, indie, alt-rock, quirky pop, singer-songwriter vibes and more, the 2014 Tramlines bill features bass-loving BBC Radio 1 stalwart Annie Mac, electronica innovator Gold Panda, '90s indie darlings The Wedding Present, underground house ace Leon Vynehall and Sheffield's ownn dancehall and bashment maestro, Toddla T.
Line-up includes The Prodigy, David Guetta, Chase & Status, Alesso, Jamie Jones, Netsky, Katy B, Andy C, Maya Jane Coles, Breach, Duke Dumont, Green Velvet, DJ EZ, Scuba, Eats Everything, David Rodigan, Pete Tong, Skream, Paul Woolford, The Martinez Brothers, Gorgon City.
What's the deal? One of the UK's biggest and oldest dance festivals is celebrating 14 years strong in 2014, and as you'd expect it's a stellar lineup that covers all corners of the electronic music spectrum. Angry electro punks The Prodigy take one of the headline spots, and repping the other end of the dance music spectrum is flaxen-haired house and EDM DJ David Guetta. Also on the bill are stadium house DJ Alesso and drum and bass duo Chase & Status, amongst an array of old guard and new-school dance talent covering anything with bleeps and beats. Pack your party head and load up on stamina, 'cause this'll be a large one, bruv.
Line-up includes Gruff Rhys, Allo Darlin'. Dean Wareham, Spearmint, Rocketship, Withered Handm The Popguns, Sweet Baboo, The Spook School, The Wellgreen, Let's Wrestle, Night Flowers, The Very Most, The Blue Minkies, The Yawns, Franny and Zooey.
What's the deal? Billing itself as an 'indie pop festival', this supremely nerdy weekender tackles its niche subject brilliantly, mixing music with steam trains. Yep, that's right. It's set in Derbyshire's Midland Railway Centre, and visitors can enjoy steam train rides and visits to railway museums as part of the ticket price. Super Furry Animals/Neon Neon dude Gruff Rhys is always a safe bet for a good performance, and London indie-pop types Allo Darlin' should bring in a good crowd, as will Withered Hand – he of cult Scottish folk label and collective Fence Records.
Line-up includes Johnny Marr, British Sea Power, Stornoway, Toy, Cate Le Bon, Steve Mason, Summer Camp, Dan Le Sac Vs Scroobius Pip, We Were Evergreen, Withered Hand, Denai Moore, Nordic Giants, PAWS, Georgia Ruth, Bleech, Teleman.
What's the deal? Few would disagree that there just aren't enough robots and water bottle rockets at festivals. Seeking to change this is Deer Shed, a thoroughly family and kid-friendly fest full of wacky science workshops and machines alongside a solid programme of indie, folk and alternative pop. Ex-Smiths guitarist Johnny Marr is the big draw here, and British Sea Power, Toy and Cate Le Bon will no doubt attract similarly enthusiastic crowds. 2014's theme is 'time travel', so don't forget your flux capacitor.
Line-up includes Public Enemy, Happy Mondays, Martha Reeves and The Vandellas, Peter Hook and the Light, Reverand and The Makers, The Amazing Snakeheads.
What's the deal? An independent festival, the Stockton Weekender has a healthy mix of acts indie, rock, pop and a few curveballs for its 2014 run, including seminal US rap act Public Enemy, riotous indie bunch Happy Mondays, and calmer sounds from Martha Reeves and The Vandellas.
Line-up includes Johnny Marr, Sinéad O'Connor, De La Soul, Public Service Broadcasting, James, Laura Mvula, Steve Mason, The Wedding Present, Peter Hook and The Light, The Cuban Brothers, Chas & Dave.
What's the deal? A truly special summer festival that acts as an ever more colourful and kid-friendly sister to the Isle of Wight's Bestival. This year's line-up is another stong one, with ex-Smiths guitar-plucker Johnny Marr, Irish singer-songwriter and Miley Cyrus-agitator Sinéad O'Connor, sample-loving quirk-pop act Public Service Broadcasting, and sing-a-long cockney geezers Chas & Dave. As well as music, you can also enjoy talks from poets and authors, posh grub and other family friendly activites. This year's theme is the circus so roll up, roll up those sleeves and get stuck in to making that lion tamer costume you've always secretly wanted.
Line-up includes Van Morrison, Sinéad O'Connor, Ladysmith Black Mambazo, Richard Thompson, Rosanne Cash, Afro Celt Sound System, Cara Dillon, Loudon Wainwright III, The Full English, Pokey LaFarge, Peggy Seeger, Jason Isbell, Sarah Jarosz, plus more TBA.
What's the deal? The daddy of UK – and arguably, European – folk festivals returns with another round of enticing artists and an easygoing, slightly hippy-ish vibe. The emphasis is on established/traditional talent, rather than nu-folk fare, and it's a mild-mannered festival, where folding chairs are encouraged rather than scoffed at.
Want more? Find more music festivals this year
Get the party started this season with some of the globe's best DJs at Love Saves The Day and We Are FSTVL
Glastonbury's got the big names and hippy vibes while Download adds the rock-factor to this year's festival season
London really comes to life as Lovebox, Wireless and British Summer Time kick off in the capital this month
Party like you're sixteen again at Reading festival or enjoy the more chilled, homely vibe of Wilderness
Our July festivals mixtape
Rock titans, cutting-edge DJs, R&B superstars – as usual, London’s throwing one hell of a party this summer
Say hello to the bands and artists set to seduce your ears this summer
Prepare for all eventualities with our list of the world’s most epic festival fails
Check out our snazzy infographic showing the history of the headliners who’ve entertained revellers at Worthy Farm