Best music festivals in Tokyo and Japan

Make the most of Japan's great music scene by heading to these top music festivals in Tokyo and further afield
EDC Japan 2018
Photo: Insomniac Holdings, LLC
By Time Out Tokyo Editors |
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Japan's many music festivals provide an astonishing variety of settings, styles and genres, along with appearances by many world-class acts and a healthy dose of anarchy otherwise so rarely found on these shores.

Mega-events like Fuji Rock and Summer Sonic aside, the supply ranges from refined indie fests and relaxed beach parties to fine-tuned techno and taiko celebrations – so all you have to do is check out our list below, choose your favourite, and get ready to rock out in the great outdoors (or indoors). Tip: most music festivals in Japan offer early bird tickets are a discount, so it's best to book early to enjoy the deal.

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Our top festival picks

Asian Kung Fu Generation
photo: FB.com/akg.official
Music, Music festivals

No Nukes

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Started in 2012, a year after the Fukushima nuclear disaster, No Nukes is a two-day music festival that aims to bring awareness to the anti-proliferation movement. This high-profile (and contentious) event points out that, even eight years after the Fukushima disaster, there are still displaced residents who haven't been able to return home, and, meantime, new nuclear power plants have gone up across Japan in the past two years. This event brings together like-minded artists to express their concern at the growing dependance on nuclear energy despite its obvious dangers...

EDC Japan 2018
Photo: Insomniac Holdings, LLC
Music, Music festivals

EDC Japan

icon-location-pin Zozo Marine Stadium, Makuhari
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Started as a warehouse party in LA in 1997, EDC (Electric Daisy Carnival) has grown into an international music festival that hits four different continents and nearly a million fans every year.  The carnival-themed event is way beyond your typical electronic music fest (crazy as those can be too), blending together art installations, light shows, fireworks, wacky over-the-top costumes, cutting-edge stage production and of course world-class electronic music, for a 'multi-sensory experience'...

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Music, Music festivals

Greenroom Festival

icon-location-pin Yokohama Red Brick Warehouse, Minato Mirai
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The concept behind the Greenroom Festival down at Yokohama Red Brick Warehouse is 'Save the Beach, Save the Ocean'. The outdoor party celebrates beach and surf culture, but with an emphasis on protecting the ever-shrinking number of usable domestic beaches in Japan. Performances span the gamut from live music to art gallery exhibitions to video screenings and more...

Music, Music festivals

Zipang

icon-location-pin Shirahama Flower Park, Chiba
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This annual open-air festival in Chiba’s Shirahama Flower Park takes place right next to the beach and combines art with house and techno beats in a resort-like ambience. The live act this year is the salsa band Banderas, and rocking the DJ booths are CMT, DJ Hikaru, Keihin and many others...

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Music, Music festivals

Fuji Rock Festival

icon-location-pin Naeba Ski Resort,
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The biggest and most beautiful of Japan’s summer music festivals, Fuji Rock once again returns to Niigata prefecture’s Naeba, welcoming a beefy lineup of both international superstars and local heroes. 2019 welcomes big names including the likes of The Chemical Brothers, Sia, James Blake, Daniel Caesar, and much more. More acts are set to be released as we inch closer towards summer, so keep your eyes peeled...

Music, Music festivals

Summer Sonic

icon-location-pin Makuhari Messe, Makuhari
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What this archetypal city-based music festival lacks in setting, it makes up in convenience. While other festivals boast views of rolling hills or stunning lakes, Summer Sonic has easy access from the city and an abundance of clean toilets, and – along with a cracking line-up – sometimes that’s all you need. This year is a big one since it's Summer Sonic's 20th anniversary. So if you've been watching it come around each year but never quite managed to make it out, this is the year to make it happen...

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Music, Music festivals

Ultra Japan

icon-location-pin Symbol Promenade Park, Odaiba
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The Miami-born EDM spectacle Ultra made its first appearance in Tokyo in 2014, and every year since has been a smashing success. Revellers dressed in neon and frills will be descending on Odaiba to enjoy the laptop-busting antics of superstar DJs including some of the hottest techno acts from around the world, plus live performances...

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