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2023 lineups: Mad Cool, Rock Werchter and more

Mad Cool, Rock Werchter, Northside, Frequency, Railbird and Ressurection have each announced a wave of new additions for their 2023 instalments.

Live Nation’s Mad Cool has unveiled an almost full lineup for its sixth edition, taking place in Madrid, from 6–8 July 2023.

Robbie Williams, Lil Nas X, Lizzo, Machine Gun Kelly, Queens of the Stone Age, The Black Keys, Sam Smith, Red Hot Chili Peppers, Liam Gallagher and The Prodigy top next year’s blockbuster bill, with two more headliners to be announced.

The 1975, Nova Twins, Franz Ferdinand, Tash Sultana, Paolo Nutini, Jamie XX, Sigur Rós, Angel Olsen, Years & Years, The Amazons, Nathaniel Rateliff & The Night Sweats, Jacob Collier, Touché Amoré, The Blessed Madonna, Honey Dijon, Genesis Owusu, Rina Sawayama, Rüfus du Sol, Bombay Bicycle Club and Sylvan Esso are also among the raft of acts announced this week.

Last year, Mad Cool expanded to five days in celebration of its fifth anniversary, which featured Florence + The Machine, Queens Of The Stone Age and Haim.

Aurora, Nathaniel Rateliff & The Night Sweats, The 1975 and Sam Fender join the Rock Werchter lineup

Meanwhile, Belgium’s Rock Werchter has added dozens of names to an already-packed lineup for 2023.

Aurora, Nathaniel Rateliff & The Night Sweats, The 1975, Sam Fender, Cavetown, The HU, slowthai, The Interrupters, Wadruna, Tamino, The Black Keys, Adekunle Gold and Dean Lewis have joined the bill.

Other new additions include Sigur Rós, Xavier Rudd, Paolo Nutini and Machine Gun Kelly. Adding to the list for 2 July are Lovejoy, Pip Millett, Amenra, Puscifer, Gabriels, Jacob Collier and The Lumineers.

They join previously announced acts Muse, Queens of the Stone Age, Arctic Monkeys, Fred Again, Oscar and the Wolf, Stromae and more.

Last year’s edition, promoted by Live Nation Belgium and Herman Schueremans, shifted 67,000 combi-tickets and four lots of 21,000 one-day tickets.

Anderson .Paak and Knxwledge aka NxWorries will be reunited at Northside

Denmark’s Northside has confirmed another slate of names for the 2023 event, taking place between 1–3 June in Eskelund park, Aarhus.

It was announced today that Anderson .Paak and Knxwledge aka NxWorries will be reunited at next year’s instalment, having released their first new single in six years.

First Aid Kit, JPEGMAFIA, Tobias Rahim, Gilli, Purple Disco Machine and LF SYSTEM have also been added to the bill.

They join previously announced acts The 1975, White Lies and Muse at the Down the Drain-promoted event.

Austria’s Frequency Festival is taking shape, with Imagine Dragons, Kraftklub, Armin Van Buuren and Alligatoah at the top of the 2023 poster. The Barracuda Music-promoted event is set for 17–19 August at Greenpark, St. Pölten.

Spain’s Ressurection Fest has assembled some of the biggest names in metal for the 2023 edition

Elsewhere, Live Nation has outlined Railbird Music Festival, a two-day music event in the US state of Kentucky.

Tyler Childers and Zach Bryan head up the bill, and are joined by acts including Zach Bryan, Weezer, Marcus Mumford, Whiskey Myers, Sheryl Crow, Charley Crockett and Jenny Lewis.

In addition to music, fans will have the opportunity to purchase from an impressive lineup of hand-selected barrels from Kentucky’s finest distilleries chosen in collaboration with co-owners Justin Sloan and Justin Thompson of Lexington’s treasured Justins’ House of Bourbon.

The festival will take place at The Infield at Red Mile, Lexington, on 3 and 4 June, 2023.

Spain’s Ressurection Fest has assembled some of the biggest names in metal for the 2023 edition, including Ghost, Slipknot, Pantera, Papa Roach, Architects, Alter Bridge and Powerwolf.

Titled Chapter XVIII Where We Belong, the next instalment will take place in Galicia, between 8 June to 1 July 2023.

 


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Mojo’s Woo Hah! festival adopts new name, location

Mojo’s Woo Hah! festival will return next year under a different name and in a new location.

The Dutch hip-hop event has been renamed Rolling Loud Rotterdam, and will take place in and around Rotterdam Ahoy between 30 June and 1 July 2023 with headliners Kendrick Lamar and Travis Scott.

Woo Hah! festival was founded in 2014 by 013 and Live Nation’s Mojo, with the aim of bringing more major hip-hop acts to the Brabant region. In 2018, the event moved to its most recent site in Beekse Bergen.

For the 2022 edition, Woo Hah! joined forces with the world’s largest hip-hop festival franchise Rolling Loud, which also has a presence in the US, Canada, Portugal and soon to be Thailand.

Rolling Loud Rotterdam 2023 will reportedly host around 28 artist performances for 40,000 visitors each day.

Rotterdam Ahoy’s ability to host more attendees than the Beekse Bergen site was a big part of the draw according to Camiel Le Rutte, project manager festivals Mojo.

“First of all, there was a production problem on the Beekse Bergen site: lack of space. All festival visitors must be able to see the headliners on the main stage at the same time. That does not work with big names such as Kendrick Lamar, who sold out the Ziggo Dome twice in October. In addition, their show must meet high requirements in terms of sound, LED light, video walls and set pieces.”

Another important factor was that many of the Woo Hah! visitors came from Rotterdam, Amsterdam and Utrecht. “We see a longer future in Rotterdam. And thanks to the North Sea Jazz Festival, we are very familiar with Ahoy’s production possibilities.”

Jolanda Jansen, director of Rotterdam Ahoy, says: “In recent years, Ahoy has already proven itself as a perfect location for major events and we can’t wait to add Rolling Loud to this list. The international and culturally diverse character of this American festival fits perfectly with a city like Rotterdam.”

Rolling Loud founders Matt Zingler and Tariq Cherif add: “Our first experience with the Dutch festival audience was one to remember. We love the energy you bring when you finally get to see your favourite artists live. We are ready to show the Netherlands the next step of everything Rolling Loud has to offer at the new location at Rotterdam Ahoy.”

 


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Slipknot announce first-ever Knotfest Italy

Slipknot are further expanding their festival footprint by taking their Knotfest brand to Italy for the first time.

Headlined by the metal legends, Knotfest Italy will debut at Bologna’s 60,000-cap Arena Parco Nord on 25 June 2023. Other confirmed acts include Architects, Amon Amarth, I Prevail, Lorna Shore, with tickets starting at €99.99.

The festival is also set to hold its multi-venue inaugural Australian leg, presented by Destroy All Lines, TEG Live and Finely Tuned, at Melbourne’s Flemington Racecourse (24 March), Centennial Park, Sydney (25 March) and Brisbane Showgrounds (26 March). Topped by Slipknot, Knotfest Australia will also feature the likes of Parkway Drive, Megadeth, Trivium and Northlane. Tickets are priced from A$199.90 (€127).

The Knotfest brand has expanded into multiple countries since launching in 2012

Knotfest Japan, meanwhile, was postponed in 2022 in light of uncertainty over Covid restrictions, but has been rescheduled for 1-2 April 2023 at the 9,000-cap Makuhari Messe International Exhibition Hall in Chiba, outside Tokyo.

The Knotfest brand has expanded into multiple countries since launching in the US in 2012, and debuted in Germany this past July at Rudolf Weber-Arena in Oberhausen, promoted by Live Nation.

Events also took place this year under the Knotfest banner in North America, Finland, Argentina, Colombia, Chile and Brazil, but a UK edition, planned for Milton Keynes Bowl in 2020, was axed due to the pandemic.

 


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Live Nation teams with RAH to launch Highways fest

Live Nation and the Royal Albert Hall have teamed up to launch new Country and Americana festival, Highways.

The London venue has confirmed acts such as Kip Moore, Morgan Wade, Jackson Dean and Stephen Wilson Jr for the inaugural festival on Saturday 20 May 2023.

Performances will be held in the main auditorium in addition to curated showcases speckled across adorning rooms.

“I am thrilled to bring to life this incredible festival alongside our partners at the Royal Albert Hall,” says Live Nation’s VP touring, Anna Sophie-Mertens. “It is every artist’s dream to play this legendary venue; and delivering such an unforgettable occasion for the Country and Americana community has been a longstanding dream of mine.”

Tickets go on sale this Friday (9 December), with further musical performances and offerings at Highways to be announced soon.

“We’re particularly pleased to be able to build on the long-running history of country music at the Hall in this way – as these genres continue to grow from strength to strength in the UK”

“We’re delighted to be building a completely new Country and Americana event with our long-standing partners at Live Nation,” adds Matthew Todd, head of programming and engagement at the Royal Albert Hall. “Our 152-year old auditorium will provide a backdrop unlike anywhere else for some brilliant acts, and we’re particularly pleased to be able to build on the long-running history of country music at the Hall in this way – as these genres continue to grow from strength to strength in the UK.”

The Hall has a long history of promoting country music and Americana in the UK, including shows by Johnny Cash, Bruce Springsteen, Bob Dylan, Willie Nelson, John Denver, Kacey Musgraves and the UK debut of Creedence Clearwater Revival in 1970.

Other notable moments of American history at the venue have included addresses by five Presidents from Taft to Clinton, UK v US basketball tournaments during the war, The Beatles attending a Bob Dylan concert, Pink Floyd opening for Jimi Hendrix, and appearances by the likes of Ella Fitzgerald, Frank Sinatra, Jay Z, and Diana Ross.

Elsewhere, the Country to Country (C2C) festival has added Morgan Evans to its main stage lineup for 2023. The Australian singer/songwriter joins previously announced headliners Zac Brown Band, Thomas Rhett and Lady A on the bill.

C2C’s 10-year celebration will take place at The O2 in London, Dublin’s 3Arena and Glasgow’s OVO Hydro from 10-12 March.

 


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Elton John to play final UK concert at Glastonbury

Sir Elton John has been confirmed as the first headliner of Glastonbury 2023, for what will be the last UK date of his farewell tour.

The legendary musician will top the bill on the Pyramid Stage on Sunday 25 June 2023, it was announced this morning (2 December).

“There is no more fitting way to say goodbye to my British fans,” says John in a statement announcing the show. “I can’t wait to embrace the spirit of the greatest festival in the world. It’s going to be incredibly emotional.”

Festival organiser Emily Eavis comments: “It gives me enormous pleasure to let you know that the one and only Elton John will be making his first-ever Glastonbury appearance, headlining the Pyramid Stage on the Sunday night next year.

“This will be the final UK show of Elton’s last-ever tour, so we will be closing the festival and marking this huge moment in both of our histories with the mother of all send-offs.”

The star teased the announcement yesterday (1 December), posting an Instagram photo captioned: “One final date to announce… the Rocket Man is incoming.”

“I can’t wait to embrace the spirit of the greatest festival in the world. It’s going to be incredibly emotional”

Around the same time, the BBC’s Glastonbury webcam featured an image of a rocket ship in the sky above the Pyramid stage.

Sir Elton’s Glastonbury performance will come at the end of the UK leg of his 350-date Farewell Yellow Brick Road tour, which kicks off in Liverpool next March.

After Glastonbury, the 75-year-old only has seven dates left to play in Europe before he retires from touring.

The star recently wrapped up the US leg of the tour with a three-night stand at LA’s Dodger Stadium – where, in 1975, he cemented his icon status with two historic gigs, bedecked in a sequinned Dodgers Baseball uniform. There, he was joined by Brandi Carlile, Kiki Dee and Dua Lipa.

The Farewell Yellow Brick Road tour had been due to run from September 2018 to 2021, encompassing five continents and over 350 dates but it was disrupted by the pandemic and John’s hip problems. The tour already topped Pollstar’s Top 100 Worldwide Tours chart for 2019 by the time the world paused and is poised to again be a contender in 2022.

While box office reports are still coming in, Pollstar reported in late November that more than 3.6 million tickets were sold for 164 of his shows, grossing more than $511 million.

 


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New safety plan finalised for Astroworld venue

A taskforce has unveiled an updated agreement regarding safety arrangements for events at Houston’s NRG Park, site of the Astroworld festival disaster.

According to the group’s members, the revised protocols, which will clearly state responsibilities for the various parties involved in events at the venue, will improve communication, development of safety plans and permitting procedures for large gatherings.

The 50,000-cap Astroworld was promoted by Live Nation and Scoremore. Ten concertgoers were killed and more than 300 injured after a crowd surge during festival co-founder Travis Scott’s headline set on 5 November 2021. All of those who died suffered from compression asphyxia.

AP reports that the move follows concerns relating to the the emergency response during the 2021 tragedy, amid confusion about which agencies and officials ultimately had authority over the event.

Under the new safety protocols for the venue, all relevant safety stakeholders will be required to be together at one location during an event to be able to better monitor possible problems. The move will also see the creation of an internal calendar of events and safety planning checklist, while the event permitting process will be streamlined.

“When there’s confusion, there’s hesitancy and when there’s hesitancy, bad things can happen”

“It’s not to say those things were absent so to speak. They weren’t as aligned as they needed to be,” says Houston mayor Sylvester Turner. “And when there’s not alignment, there’s confusion. And when there’s confusion, there’s hesitancy and when there’s hesitancy, bad things can happen.”

Houston fire chief Samuel Peña adds that while the creation of an emergency action plan was already required under the previous arrangement, the updated agreement dictates that all public safety agencies and other officials should take part in that process from the start and not simply review it at the end. “That is the big difference,” says Peña.

The Texas Task Force On Concert Safety (TFCS), which was announced by Texas governor Greg Abbott in the days following the disaster and went on to release a series of recommendations. One of its key proposals was for the creation of a centralised Event Production Guide – outlining and encouraging best-practice for event design and crowd control – which could serve as a one-stop shop for promoters to access existing legal requirements.

Earlier this year, the go-ahead was given for hundreds of Astroworld lawsuits to be formally consolidated into a single case. The first wrongful death lawsuit settlements were reached in October by the families of victims Axel Acosta, 21, and Brianna Rodriguez, 16.

 


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Palm Tree Music Festival to be exported to Aspen

C3 Presents, Palm Tree Crew and Belly Up Aspen are exporting Palm Tree Music Festival to the snowy slopes of Colorado, US.

Following successful editions in The Hamptons (US), Cabo San Lucas (MX) and Pag Island (HR), the two-day experience will launch in Aspen with headliners Kygo and Jack White.

Gryffin, King Princess, Cannons and Forester will also perform live at the winter edition, scheduled for 24–25 February 2023 at Rio Grande Park.

Palm Tree Festival was founded by Norwegian producer Kygo and his manager Myles Shear under their ‘tropical lifestyle brand’ The Palm Tree Crew.

The brand will work with Live Nation promoter C3 Presents and Aspen live music venue Belly Up on the new edition.

“To be able to produce an event like this here in our community is something we have been diligently working on for a long time”

“I can’t wait to bring Palm Tree Festival to Aspen this winter,” says Kygo. “I’ve played at Belly Up and the X Games before but this one is going to be very special. The lineup has some amazing artists and it’s right in downtown Aspen so it’s going to be a fun one.”

Shear adds that he is proud to “build something that has never been done before during the peak winter season”. “Palm Tree Crew is making history here in Aspen, and we are stoked to finally see this event come to life,” he says.

David and Danny Goldberg of Belly Up Aspen comment: “To be able to produce an event like this here in our community is something we have been diligently working on for a long time.”

Fans who purchase general admission tickets will have access to the standing-room-only section near the stage, food vendors and exclusive Palm Tree Crew merchandise.

VIP ticket holders will have the same amenities as well as access to the upper-level viewing deck that will be heated and covered and include dedicated food, bar and private restrooms. Fans can also purchase tables for the festival that will feature signature food items.

 


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2023 lineups take shape: Superbloom, Sziget and more

Superbloom, Standon Calling, Sziget, Shaky Knees and Kite’s 2023 lineups are taking shape, with rafts of new additions announced.

After its successful debut this year, Goodlive’s Superbloom returns to Munich’s Olympiapark on 2 and 3 September, 2023.

Imagine Dragons, Martin Garrix, Ellie Goulding, Marteria, Badmómzjay, Zara Larsson, Ofenbach, Aurora, LostFrequencies, Giant Rooks, Years & Years and Cat Burns are among the first wave of confirmations for the second instalment.

The inaugural edition sold out, welcoming 50,000 fans each day. Goodlive director Fruzsina Szép reflected on the successful launch in an IQ inteview.

Standon Calling has announced Years & Years, Self Esteem, Bloc Party and The Human League

Elsewhere, the UK’s Standon Calling has announced that Years & Years, Self Esteem, Bloc Party and The Human League will headline the 2023 offering.

Anastacia, Confidence Man, Dylan, Squid, Katy B, KT Tunstall and Melanie C will also perform at the 17th edition of the boutique music and arts festival.

Festival founder and director Alex Trenchard says “We’re so proud of this year’s progress in booking a gender-balanced headline bill.”

The Broadwick Live-owned festival will return to the Hertfordshire countryside between 20 and 23 July 2023.

Across the Atlantic, Shaky Knees has confirmed headliners The Killers, Muse and The Lumineers for the 10th-anniversary edition.

Shaky Knees has confirmed headliners The Killers, Muse and The Lumineers for the 10th-anniversary edition

More than 60 bands will perform across four stages during the 2023 festival, slated for 5–7 May at Central Park, downtown Atlanta.

Greta Van Fleet, Tenacious D, Hozier, The Mars Volta, Yeah Yeah Yeahs, The Flaming Lips performing “Yoshimi Battles the Pink Robots,” Cypress Hill performing “Black Sunday” have also been announced.

The festival is promoted by Live Nation subsidiary C3 Presents, who today announced new festival Palm Tree in Aspen.

Elsewhere, Hungary’s Sziget festival has unveiled the first wave of artists for next year, including headliners Billie Eilish, Florence & The Machine, David Guetta and Imagine Dragons.

Other confirmations include Sam Fender, Foals, Niall Horan, Yungblud, Jamie xx and Nothing But Thieves.

Tinderbox has lined up Maroon 5, George Ezra, Jada, bbno$ and Oliver Malcolm

Europe’s biggest festival will return to Óbuda Island in Budapest between 10 and 15 August 2023.

In Denmark, Tinderbox has lined up Maroon 5, George Ezra, Jada, bbno$ and Oliver Malcolm for the 2023 event, between 22–24 June in Odense, Funen.

Last year, the festival broke records when a daily number of 48,000 people visited the festival again after two years of cancellations.

The UK’s Kite festival today announced it will return for a second year, with musical artists including Hot Chip, Suede, Candi Staton, Lynks and Sarathy Korwar.

Hailed as a “festival of ideas and music,” the Oxfordshire event will also feature authors, actors, comedians, journalists, motivational speakers and more. The festival is set for 9–11 June at Kirtlington Park.

See more festival lineup announcements from the likes of Roskilde, Primavera and Nova Rock here.

 


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Rallying call for Festicket creditors

Promoters owed money by collapsed festival package company Festicket are being urged to contact administrators ahead of Friday’s (2 December) deadline.

The London-headquartered event discovery and booking platform had debts of more than £22.5 million when it went bust in September. Six firms were each owed in excess of £1m, with a further 20-plus creditors owed six-figure sums, according to documents filed with Companies House.

Administrator ReSolve Advisory said previously that despite several promoters being under the impression the cash from their ticket sales would be ringfenced by Festicket, that does not appear to have happened.

“We have received communication from a number of promoter creditors who are asserting that the net realisations from their ticket sales were to be held in trust for them by the company,” it said. “Our understanding is that the company did not segregate or ringfence any assets for the benefit of specific parties.”

At the request of administrators, the Insolvency and Companies Court has ordered that any creditor asserting that its monies were held on trust by Festicket should notify administrators of its “trust claim” along with an estimate of its value by no later than 4pm on 2 December. Following an initial meeting on 17 November, a second directions hearing is expected to take place at the London court on 9 December.

“If you were led to believe the money from the sale of your events was to be held on trust by Festicket then you must notify the administrators by the aforementioned deadline”

A letter circulated around the industry, seen by IQ, puts the number of promoters owed money by Festicket as “at least” 105, “some of whom are asserting trust claims whilst others are suggesting they are simply creditors”.

“If you were led to believe the money from the sale of your events was to be held on trust by Festicket (or any of its other trading names) then you must notify the administrators by the aforementioned deadline,” it adds. “Any such respondent must also notify the administrators if you intend to attend the second directions hearing and whether you intend to oppose or support the main application.

“Please provide any such information to [email protected] as soon as possible and in any event by the deadline.”

Any promoter wishing to join current and potential future litigation is advised to email [email protected]

Founded in 2012 by Zack Sabban, Jerome Elfassy and Jonathan Youne, Festicket also ran offices in the US, the Netherlands, Germany, Portugal, France and Australia. The company, which acquired Event Genius and Ticket Arena in 2019, recorded losses of approximately £11.3 million and £8m in the 2019 and 2020 financial years, respectively.

US-based ticketing exchange Lyte acquired Festicket and Event Genius assets for £100,000 in September and pledged to protect Festicket employees and find “ways to reconcile and rebuild with affected promoter clients”.

 


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Roskilde, Primavera and more reveal 2023 lineups

Primavera Sound, Roskilde, Nova Rock, Rock Werchter, NorthSide and Nos Alive have added slates of artists to their 2023 lineups.

Rosalía, Calvin Harris, Kendrick Lamar, Pet Shop Boys, Depeche Mode, Blur and Halsey top the bill for Primavera Sound 2023, which will be held in two different Spanish cities across two weekends.

Next year’s festival will take place at its usual location of Parc Del Fòrum, Barcelona, on the first weekend (1–3 June).

On the second weekend (8–10 June), the festival will take place in the Ciudad de Rock (City of Rock) in Arganda del Rey, Madrid, for the first time ever.

The Spanish institution recently debuted in São Paulo, Brazil (5-6 November), Buenos Aires, Argentina and Santiago, Chile (both 12-13 November) to commemorate the event’s 20th birthday. Director Alfonso Lanza spoke to IQ about the “incredible response” to the festival’s South American debut.

Elsewhere, Denmark’s Roskilde has secured a raft of household names including Blur, Burna Boy, Christine & The Queens and Queens of the Stone Age for its 2023 edition, scheduled for 24 June to 1 July 2023.

Denmark’s Roskilde has secured Blur, Burna Boy, Christine & The Queens and Queens of the Stone Age

The 51st edition will also feature Alice Glass, Japanese Breakfast, Tove Lo, Denzel Curry and Rina Sawayama. Explore the 50-year history of Roskilde with IQ‘s recent feature.

Austria’s 2023 festival season is beginning to shape with marquee festival Nova Rock confirming headliners Slipknot, Bilderbuch, Die Ärtze, The Prodigy and Tenacious D.

Promoted by Nova Music Entertainment (part of CTS Eventim’s Barracuda Music), the four-day festival is slated for 7–10 June 2023 in Nickelsdorf.

Belgium’s Rock Werchter, meanwhile, has bagged some of the biggest names in rock for the 2023 edition in Festivalpark between 29 June to 2 July.

Muse, Queens of the Stone Age, Arctic Monkeys will top the bill, with support from Fred Again, Oscar and the Wolf, Stromae and more.

Last year’s edition, promoted by Live Nation Belgium and Herman Schueremans, shifted 67,000 combi-tickets and four lots of 21,000 one-day tickets.

“Denmark’s Northside is coming together, with The 1975, White Lies and Muse lined up for the 2023 instalment”

Sister festival Rock Werchter Boutique, meanwhile, will be headlined by P!nk and One Republic on 17 June 2023 in Festivalpark.

Elsewhere, Denmark’s Northside is coming together, with The 1975, White Lies and Muse lined up for the 2023 instalment.

The Down the Drain-promoted event will take place between 1–3 June 2023 in Eskelund park, Aarhus.

Following last week’s confirmation of The Black Keys, Nos Alive has followed up with acts including Angel Olsen, Idles, Tasha Sultana, Lizzo, Men I Trust and Sylvan Esso for next year’s event.

The 15th edition is due to take place between 6–8 July 2023 in the Algés riverside, close to Lisbon.

This year’s NOS Alive, promoted as usual by Everything Is New, welcomed 210,000 people over four days and 165 artists across seven stages.

 


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