10. Treasure Island Festival
October 16 - October 17
San Francisco, USA
Day 1 | Day 2
It seems best to take the rough with the smooth while attending Treasure Island Festival. Set out on, yep, Treasure Island in the San Francisco Bay, the two-day party's location is likely to be one of the most unique you'll ever experience; but can be a pain in the ass to get to. And for every clued-up clubber wanting to discuss the latest Four Tet 12-inch with you, there's likely to be a middle-aged khaki slacks-wearing day tripper checking his Blackberry. Day one's bill is distinctly the more electronic-inclined of the two: You'll get to enjoy crossover bands such as LCD Soundsytem, !!!, Miike Snow, Little Dragon and Holy Fuck, while the likes of Deadmau5, Four Tet, Kruder & Dorfmeister and Die Antwoord bridge the gaps between them. The outlook for day two, meanwhile, is a high pressure indie rock front moving in from the south, with highs between Belle & Sebastian, The National and Broken Social Scene.
RA pick: Catch chilled Austrian duo Kruder & Dorfmeister on their first full US tour in almost ten years.
September 25 - October 4
Gold Coast | Perth | Melbourne | Sydney | Adelaide
The giant of down-unda dance music festivals, Fuzzy, will shortly awake from its winter slumber to, like, get back in touch with nature. Commencing at the Gold Coast's Parklands Showgrounds, Parklife will traverse the nation's green and grassy expanses through Perth, Melbourne and Sydney before doubling back to Adelaide for the final installment. Northern hemisphere artists like Jesse Rose, Missy Elliot, Dandy Warhols, Brodinski and New York Pony Club will be chasing the sun throughout, backed by local heroine Anna Lunoe, Midnight Juggernauts, Ajax and the Modular mafia's hot young things, The Swiss.
RA pick: The blog-approved Dayve Hawk, AKA one man band Memory Tapes.
October 1 - October 3
Day 1 | Day 2
October's blushing debutante comes to us direct from The City of Bridges... or The City of Steel, depending on who you ask. Pittsburgh's first-annual music and new media festival plans to blur the boundaries between electronic music, visual artists, game design and live music visualization. Via is aiming high, but with funk of the electro- and punk- varieties courtesy of Dâm-Funk and !!!, hip-hop deconstructionists Tokimonsta and Onra, and experimentalist Oneohtrix Point Never as some of the names providing the ear candy, we reckon they've got the music angle locked down. If this, visual performances and art installations aren't enough, the promise of a to-the-death shuffleboard match with Paul from !!! ought to spur Pittsburghians into action on festival's final day.
RA pick: Mr. Black City himself, Matthew Dear.
07. San Francisco Lovevolution
San Francisco, USA
With the events of Duisburg still fresh in mind, it won't surprise you to learn that there have been delays over details surrounding this year's LovEvolution in San Francisco. The party's previous hub, Civic Center, has been deemed too small to safely house the number of people expected at this year's event, leaving the LovEvolution team and the local authorities to hammer out details on a new location. Whatever the outcome, a series of parties in and around the city should be expected as part of what the organizers have branded "Love Week."
RA pick: Lee Burridge seems to be the only certainty right now, which is no bad thing.
06. Iceland Airwaves
October 13 - October 17
Iceland has spent much of the last year in the spotlight for reasons not related to Björk or Sigur Rós. But while the tiny isle has imploded financially and exploded volcanically, downtown "101" Reykjavík is ready to get back to the business of music. This year's Airwaves will draft in Mount Kimbie's otherworldly dubstep mutations, stylised synth pop from Hurts, Robyn's pop confections and Moderat's multimedia experience, alongside a program that heavily features Icelandic acts and bands, doing what they do best throughout the district's bars, museums and airplane hangars.
RA pick: Don't let genre names like chill-wave and glo-fi, put you off the deliriously uplifting Toro Y Moi.
October 7 - October 17
Ever met a hipster from Belgrade? You'll find them in abundance at the city's Dis-patch festival. But you'll also find much more. The event, entering its ninth year, puts a premium on offering cutting-edge music and related art over the course of its two weeks in October. That means that, once again, the team behind the event will be teaching local kids how make music, presenting "live digital murals" and giving their artists-in-residence the chance to flex their creative muscles in just about any iteration of production they can imagine. All this plus plenty of experiments from the likes of Atom TM, Ben Frost, Tim Hecker and Carl Michael von Hausswolff.
RA pick: Zombie Zombie performing the music of John Carpenter.
04. Elevate Festival
October 21 - October 26
Dom im Berg
"It is the festival organizers utmost concern to encourage people to develop a more conscious and critical handling of their own perception of media and reality." Now that's a mission statement. Elevate is the baby of Austria's second city, Graz, and takes place each year within the its historic Schlossberg—a rather stunning looking hill in the city centre. Those journeying to the event can expect five days of lectures, discussions, workshops and installations (all with the political overtones the event actively cultivates), and a music program boasting some of techno, experimental and bass music's key names. Robert Hood, Claro Intelecto and Sandwell Distirct are the big four/four players, while Mount Kimbie, Walls, Joy Orbison, Oneohtrix Point Never, Actress and Altered Natives blur the boundaries.
RA pick: Chicago's DJ Spinn will be on hand to introduce the sound of the city's footwork scene.
03. Movement Torino
October 30 - October 31
Pala Olimpico Isozaki
Although outwardly the events bear little resemblance to one another, Movement Torino is of course the Italian counterpart to the annual three-day Detroit spectacular. What you get for investing in the European leg of the party is a charming Northern Italian city to explore and the humungous Pala Olimpico Isozaki—the festival's two day base—to play in. The venue's main space could comfortably house a herd of elephants and still have room for a couple hundred clubbers, which should give you an indication of the required soundtrack. A couple of key headliners are yet to be confirmed (we're banking on big techno names) but the likes of Derrick May, Anthony Shakir, MCDE, Dixon, Kyle Hall, Keith Worthy, Patrice Scott and Ellen Allien have already been listed. The party rolls with one of the youngest and most up-for-it festival crowds you're likely to encounter—allow yourself to be swept up in the melee for the best experience.
RA pick: Anthony 'Shake' Shakir will be among a bevy of Motor City artists looking to educate and stimulate.
02. Unsound Festival
October 17 - October 24
Set up in 2003 by not-for-profit organisation Fundacja Tone, Unsound has become the jewel in the crown of Poland's electronic music calendar. Each year they bring a wide variety of international artists over to Krakow for their debut performance in the country, and this year's programming—which is based around the theme "horror"—is no different, with Mike Huckaby, Demdike Stare, Kyle Hall, Joy Orbison, Oneohtrix Point Never, Badawi, Petre Inspirescu, Mordant Music and the Moritz von Oswald Trio all playing on Polish turf for the first time at a catalogue of the city's most impressive venues. The festival's more club-orientated shows are based over the weekend for short-term Unsound attendees, but those present for the entire week will also be treated to more downbeat acts such as Bedroom Community's Ben Frost and Daniel Bjarnason, who have been commissioned to work with Krakow's 28-piece Sinfonietta Cracovia for a special one-off set.
RA pick: With keyboardist Claudio Simonetti back at the helm, you'd be a fool to pass up the opportunity to catch horror soundtrack legends Goblin do their thing at the city's Engineering Museum.
01. Amsterdam Dance Event
October 20 - October 23
From a biz perspective, while some music conferences have evolved into little more than opportunities for lengthy 'meetings' at sunny rooftop pools and in beachside bars, ADE has remained of equal currency to both the industry bod and the dance music appreciator. Wheeling and dealing will abound during ADE's four days, with 150 speakers, 2000 delegates and plenty of hand-shaking and dotted-line-signing. But if you couldn't give a hoot about any of that, there's always the option of spending your days tootling around the 'dam's quaint city centre before 40 venues throw open their doors for the festival's evening affairs. Aside from (shameless plug alert) our own party at Trouw with Hercules & Love Affair, Steve Bug and Tensnake, dance music fans of all stripes will find something to throw some shapes and cut a rug to—from Marcel Dettmann to Kelis, Sander Kleinenberg to Flying Lotus, and parties hosted by Bpitch Control, Hemlock, Circoloco, Secretsundaze, Boys Noize, and Border Community.
RA pick: The Detroit 25 opening party spectacle shouldn't be missed.