Here are ten of our favourites happening in September.
Blijburg Aan Zee, Amsterdam, Netherlands
September 2 - September 3
ZeeZout, which translates to "sea salt," is a beach festival at heart. That makes this year's move from the Diemerbos parklands to Blijburg Aan Zee, a city beach in Amsterdam, something like a homecoming. For the third edition of the festival, which grew from a roaming Amsterdam party series, the organisers have tapped a mixture of guests from home and abroad, culminating in what is easily their most stylistically diverse lineup yet. There's the sunshine-friendly (Bicep, Laurine, Tornado Wallace) and the darker-edged (Voiski, Helena Hauff & Silent Servant), all of it coming together to soundtrack a killer late-summer party.
RA Pick: Hard to argue with Bicep's house slammers.
The Hague, Netherlands
September 22 - September 23
TodaysArt is small festival with big ideas. Architects, web designers, scientists, artists and musicians share equal footing on a programme that boldly attempts to show their common ground. Crucially, it's eager to engage the general public and reach beyond the commercial norms dictating your average festival—indeed, at the helm of the operation is an ex-squatter. Its egalitarian attitude suits The Hague scene's DIY origins, while the lineup, which this year includes Legowelt, Ata Kak, Inga Mauer, Aleksi Perälä, eschews heavyweight headliners to aim directly at quality, whether it's a techno DJ or an avant-garde improvisor.
RA Pick: Laurel Halo, fresh from her excellent new album.
Nyege Nyege Festival
Nile Discovery Beach, Jinja, Uganda
September 1 - September 3
Nyege Nyege is doing wonderful things for electronic music in Uganda. The community-based organisation is nurturing a burgeoning scene in the East African nation, with a mix of parties, a free-to-use music studio in Kampala and a record label, Nyege Nyege Tapes, that's released some thrilling music these past 12 months. In 2015 Nyege Nyege started its own festival in Jinja, located by Lake Victoria at the source of the Nile. This year, loads of African artists—including the Cameroonian singer Reniss, Ghanaian DJ/producer Gafacci and South African gqom artists Cruel Boyz—will join international DJs and live acts who are encouraged to collaborate with local musicians in Nyege Nyege's studio while they're in Uganda.
RA Pick: Reniss, who scored a hit with 2016's "Le Sauce," performing with the rapper Jovi.
Kasteel Van Horst, Holsbeek, Belgium
September 8 - September 10
Belgium's HORST boasts one of Europe's most eye-catching festival locations: a centuries-old Flemish castle surrounded by woods, ponds, meadows and fields. A small army of record nerds will storm the castle for the festival's 2017 edition, with Gilles Peterson, Motor City Drum Ensemble, Young Marco, Tako, Nosedrip, Jayda G and Red Greg guaranteed to play all sorts of weird and wonderful music. Throw in some harder sounds from Helena Hauff and Special Request, a back-to-back set from FunkinEven and Jay Daniel, plus feel-good selections from Shanti Celeste and Kornél Kovács, and Horst 2017 feels very well-rounded indeed.
RA Pick: One of the great things about Young Marco is he's never afraid to drop an "obvious" tune at the right time. (And he's equally happy to lay waste to sniffy online commenters.)
Mylos Complex, Greece
September 13 - September 17
Over the past few years, Reworks has been a steady presence in an unsteady country. A few thousand young people flock to Thessaloniki, the country's second-largest city, for a five-night rave that, for more than a decade, has been its best-loved electronic music event. As usual, big names (Solomun, Dixon, Ben Klock) mix with locals (Ison, Cayetano, Tendts) at Reworks' headquarters, the sprawling Mylos multicultural complex, and a few other charming Thessaloniki venues. With warm weather, a friendly crowd and a relaxed atmosphere, it's easy to see why Reworks remains a beacon of stability.
RA Pick: The first Greek set from rising Serbian techno star Tijana T.
The Source Music Resort, Morocco
September 15 - September 17
"Literally crying right now—never in the history of Morocco has there been such a thing," reads the top comment on RA's review of Oasis Festival 2015. That's not your average post-event sentiment, but then how many festivals can claim to have introduced a nation to dozens of world-class artists? That'll continue in 2017 thanks to a lineup as strong as any you'll find in Europe. Titans like Richie Hawtin, Marcel Dettmann and Nicolas Jaar rub shoulders with deeper acts (Dr. Rubinstein, Willow and Shed) and Ibiza favourites (Jackmaster, Maceo Plex). These artists, plus another 50 or so, will descend on The Source, a music-focussed resort on the outskirts of Marrakech that offers breathtaking views of the surrounding Atlas Mountains.
RA Pick: The RA showcase with Call Super, DJ Stingray and Pantha Du Prince in a cactus-lined amphitheatre should be pretty special, if we may say so ourselves.
September 1 - September 3
These days, festivals have come to encompass a vast range of locations and situations, from boats in Croatia to igloos in the Alps. Still, it's hard to beat the classic setup: a bunch of soundsystems in a field in the English countryside. Field Maneuvers delivers this tried and tested formula with special flair, bringing a cozy crowd of 700 people to an undisclosed location outside London for three nights of no-frills raving. "The whole weekend you're overcome by just how much love the team puts into what for them is their dream party," Hugh Taylor said in his review of last year's event. With artists like DJ Nature, Midland, Shanti Celeste and Soichi Terada on this year's bill, it's easy to picture the scene.
RA Pick: Jane Fitz and Jade Seatle are sure to play some of the weekend's most special records.
Fort Punta Christo, Pula, Croatia
September 6 - September 10
Before there was Dimensions, there was Outlook. The bass music festival was one of the first to crack Croatia, working out a way to marry stunning backdrops and pearly blue waters with a first-rate party experience. Ten years later, it's still at the top of its game, which has everything to do with its staunch dedication to the genres that made it. Is there a better place to enjoy dubstep and drum & bass than Fort Punta Christo's Mungo's Hi-Fi Arena? Or a more awe-inspiring venue for hip-hop and grime than Pula's 2,000-year-old amphitheatre? This year's milestone edition will feature arguably the meatiest lineup yet, with Dizzee Rascal, DJ Shadow, Wiley, Giggs, Digital Mystikz, The Bug, Goldie and General Levy being just a few of the names.
RA Pick: No Outlook experience is complete without a boat party ticket, and this year's pick is an afternoon cruise soundtracked by underground hip-hop luminaries Jehst and Pharoahe Monch.
Naeba Greenland, Chubu, Japan
September 16 - September 18
How many festivals deliberately downsize to protect what makes them great? Having reached the zenith of its popularity, Labyrinth has taken steps to preserve its much-vaunted atmosphere and intimate feel, giving this year's journey to Naeba Greenland a particularly elusive air. Their novel mix of hypnotic music, a secluded natural landscape, a super-focused crowd and an ultra-pristine soundsystem is spawning ever more disciples in the West and East alike. But it remains untouched on its pedestal, largely thanks to the sense of community that it's currently doing its best to protect.
RA Pick: There's no lineup announced yet but, with Labyrinth, you know what to expect: deep, heady, hypnotic techno.
Monticello, New York, US
September 15 - September 17
When Sustain-Release first appeared in 2014, it seemed like they already knew exactly what they were doing. They had a unique location (Camp Kennybrook in Upstate New York), DIY lights (Nitemind) and a lineup rooted in New York's new school of local DJs and producers, beginning with two of the organizers, Aurora Halal and Ital. A few years later, the "adventurous weekend" (not a festival) has gotten better each time, its reputation spreading well beyond New York. By now it's hard to look at this annual event and see anything other than a rave ideal: a humble and intimate DIY party with music from a few dozen cutting-edge musicians, balancing local acts making waves (Turtle Bugg, Octo Octa, Umfang & Volvox) with international artists less commonly seen on the festival circuit (Powder, Wata Igarashi, Josey Rebelle). As if that weren't enough, they've also got hot tubs.
RA Pick: Deejay Xanax (AKA DJ Wey, AKA DJ Python) is fast emerging as a leading light in this scene.
See our full festival listings for September right here.