the great escape new music festival

The Great Escape is back this May and this year the city will have to make a tough call, choosing from over 500 acts across three days. If you’re here during the festival, which runs from Thursday 17th to Saturday 19th May, keep your eyes open and your ears to the ground, as the streets are rife with pop-up gigs by artists you’d usually queue hours to see.


In its thirteenth year and with a line-up of emerging talent that is hard to beat, these are some of the gigs we think are worth queueing for…

Art School Girlfriend. If The Maccabees stole your heart then you might recognise Art School Girlfriend’s voice, as she appeared on their last album. She’s had some amazing reviews from the likes of Clash, so we’ll be heading down.

Børns. If you like a little dance, then Børns will have you dancing to his amazing disco-pop. His only other two UK tour dates are sold out so catch him if you can.

Deep Throat Choir. This all-female collective recently did a collaboration with Simian Mobile Disco and we loved what we heard… as will you if you get the chance to catch this experimental girl gang at this year’s festival.

Connie Constance. Seeing this London based singer-songwriter is always a pleasure. A mix of soul, indie and jazz, it will be a good gig to stumble upon during The Great Escape.

Superorganism. An absolute must in our opinion. They met on the internet last year and this indie-pop band are already topping the charts. Get to the gig early and join the queue, you won’t regret it.

New for 2018, an exciting 2,000-person-capacity festival site, right on Brighton beach. The site will be the heart of the festival, with two music venues, bars, food stalls, chill-out areas and more pop-up performance spaces. Adding to the festival’s family of 30 venues across the city, we’re looking forward to seeing what the curators of the new space have got up their sleeves. Expect good things from the likes of Island Records, AWAL and Dr. Martens.

We’ve been at The Great Escape from the beginning, so we’re also chuffed to hear that electro-dance legend Erol Alkan is bringing his infamous wild nights to the festival. If you’re a fan then you need to know that Crack Magazine will also be hosting a Late Escape show, with some of electronic music’s hottest talent.


Photo credits: Phoebe Fox

17th – 19th May 2018; tickets from £35.