The Korea Herald


Music festivals to set Korea on fire

By Yoon Min-sik

Published : May 28, 2017 - 17:34

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From EDM to rock, the music festivals across the country are set to further fuel the blazing heat this summer.

With Ultra Korea 2017 just around the corner, music lovers of all genres are gearing up for events that will dial the excitement all the way up to 11. Fans will be treated to an opportunity to release the burden of everyday mundanity and lose themselves in a frenzy of beats and melody.

Organizers for Ultra Korea, set to take place in Jamsil Olympic Stadium in southern Seoul, says this year’s lineup will be the “best ever.” Last week, Ultra Korea released the final lineup for the event, in which some 80 acts will perform in four stages on June 10-11.

The crowd cheers during a performance at Ultra Korea 2016 (Ultra Korea) The crowd cheers during a performance at Ultra Korea 2016 (Ultra Korea)

The event boasts a total of 13 headliners, which include the Aussie electronic wonder of Pendulum who reunited last year to perform at Ultra Music Festival in Miami, Florida.

Alongside the duo, Tiesto -- voted by fans as the greatest DJ of all time by MixMag magazine in 2011 -- will pump up the atmosphere at the event. Another top-class act DJ Hardwell -- who has made a reputation for his sets at major music festivals -- will also hit the stage.

The remaining list of headliners -- Alesso, Dash Berlin, Dubfire, KSHMR, Martin Solveig, Nic Fanciulli, Nicky Romero, Sasha & John Digweed, Steve Angello and Tshami -- is enough to impress music enthusiasts everywhere. In addition to the main stage, this year’s festival will also feature a live stage called “Resistance,” which will give the audience a chance to get a closer look at rising artists from in and out of the country, and a “Magic Beach” stage which hopes to bring a bit of a summer beach vibe to the venue.

While known for being one of the most exciting EDM festivals in Asia, Ultra Korea does not stop just there. It will also bring together prominent artists from hip-hop, K-pop and other genres. This includes rappers Dynamic duo, Dumbfoundead and K-pop vocalist Hyolyn. 

Organizers said they hope that this year’s event will repeat or even top the success of last year’s event, which had amassed 150,000, the largest number of visitors since the first event in 2012.

The crowd cheers during a performance at Ultra Korea 2016 (Ultra Korea) The crowd cheers during a performance at Ultra Korea 2016 (Ultra Korea)
Tickets are available at hanaticket at 1566-6668 and One day tickets cost 130,000 won while 2-day combo are priced at 180,000 won.

Following Ultra Korea, other EDM summer festivals include Heineken-organized 5tardium, Unite with Tomorrowland and World Club Dome.

5tardium, a one-night DJing festival by the Dutch brewery, will be held on July 8. The festival is in its fourth year and will be held under the theme “The Grand Voyage.” The event boasts spectacular special effects in addition to music.

Organizers have yet to reveal the lineup for the event.

This year will mark the first time Korea will host Unite With Tomorrowland, which connects the internationally-famed music festival of Tomorrowland with other places in the world via a satellite-connected live stream stage.

Tomorrowland, held in Boom, Belgium, is one of the largest and most notable music festivals in the world. United With Tomorrowland Korea will be held at Munhak Stadium in Incheon on July 29. The lineup will include live performances by Far East Movement, and Armin Van Buuren, KSHMR and Dimitri Vegas & Like Mike from Tomorrowland mainstage via a live connection.

In September, the World Club Dome will land in Korea for its first event in the country. The three-day event, which boasts to be “the biggest EDM club in the world,” has designated Korea as the first Asian destination due to EDM’s surging popularity in the country.

The event will be held from Sept. 22 to 24 and will also be held at Munhak Stadium. The list of artists is expected to include Martin Garrix, Afrojackm and Steve Aoki.

The crowd cheers during a performance at Ultra Korea 2016 (Ultra Korea) The crowd cheers during a performance at Ultra Korea 2016 (Ultra Korea)

But electronic music will not be the only treat for Korean fans.

On Thursday, Jisan Valley Rock Music & Arts Festival released some of the lineup for the upcoming event which is held from July 28 to 30. This includes Diplo, The fin., along with local musicians like Hyuckoh, rapper Zico of Block B, and band Life and Time.

The previously released list of musicians include world-renowned artists Gorillaz, Sigur Ros and Major Lazer.

Gorillaz, an English virtual band, consists of four animated fictional members. Since being created by Damon Albarn and Jamie Hewlett, it has expanded across various genres including alternative rock, hip-hop, reggae and pop.

It has garnered both critical and commercial success, having notched various awards, including a Grammy and a few MTV music awards, while selling millions of records. It has been recorded as the most successful virtual band by the Guinness World Records.

Major Lazer, American music trio formed in 2009, has gained popularity through its three full-length albums and EP “Apocalypse Soon,” also having produced rap legend Snoop Dog’s debut reggae album “Reincarnated.”

The three-day event, held in Jisan Forest Resort in Icheon, Gyeonggi Province, will be held under the theme of “hide and seek,” which organizers explained will offer visitors a chance to find various art pieces “hiding” inside the festival.

The crowd cheers during a performance at Ultra Korea 2016 (Ultra Korea) The crowd cheers during a performance at Ultra Korea 2016 (Ultra Korea)

Rock fans across Korea will be greeted with the 12th annual Incheon Pentaport Rock Festival as autumn approaches. From Aug.11 to 13, international and domestic artists will rock on with the fans at Songdo International Business District in Incheon.

This year’s lineup will include British indie pop band Bastille and Australia’s 5 Seconds of Summer. Other artists include South Korean acts Pia, The Solutions along with Japanese band Her Name In Blood.

A peculiar event awaits those who visit Jara Island in Gapyeong-gun, Gyeonggi Province.

Rainbow Island Music & Camping Festival, will offer attendees an opportunity to camp overnight while enjoying music performances during the day.

Campers are provided with tents -- while they can also choose to bring their own -- to enjoy the experience from Saturday afternoon to Sunday morning.

The lineup includes musicians such as Kim Ban-jang and the Windy City, Bolbbalgan4, Samuel Seo, and Eddie Kim.

By Yoon Min-sik (