It’s that time of year again when everyone’s on the lookout for hints at who’ll be gracing Australia’s biggest winter festival Splendour In The Grass this July. While the festival won’t unveil its lineup for a little while, we’ve had a gaze into our crystal ball to pick out the big names that could very well be lighting up Splendour in a few months’ time.
Romy, Jamie and Oliver have surely got to be one of the most likely headliners for this year’s Splendour In The Grass. Not only have they been announced on the lineup for Fuji Rock Festival in Japan (which typically shares several of its headliners with Splendour), but in December last year they confirmed during a fleeting visit down under that there was 100% definitely an Australian tour in the works.
With every year that Frank fails to make up for his cancelled 2013 appearance at Splendour our hope for a return to Australia wains just a little bit more, but with two new albums up his sleeve and a lack of commitments on his calendar this July it just might be possible that 2017 is the year he makes it happen. Please let it be so. UPDATE: Frank has been ruled out thanks to FYF. :(
Another act headlining Fuji Rock Festival, LCD Soundsystem absolutely shredded Coachella last year. The last time they came to Australia was Big Day Out 2011 (feel old yet?) and it’d only be fair that they bring their bloody incredible live show to their loving and loyal Aussie fans pretty damn soon, especially after it emerged that LCD cancelled their unannounced Australian tour originally slated for the back in of 2016.
It’s been a while since Splendour had a big name hip hop headliner, and whilst there were rumours of Kanye West pulling out on the eve of the big lineup announcement last year, we were once again left empty handed. Yes, it could be argued that a return from Anderson .Paak just a year after his appearance at Listen Out is unlikely, but there’s just as much logic in arguing that he had so much fun last year that he’ll be back again.UPDATE: .Paak has been ruled out thanks to FYF. :(
Triumphantly returning to the charts and our hearts over the past few weeks with some truly incredible new music, NZ pop qween Lorde could easily pop over to us this July to showcase her new album which is due out in April. Lorde performed at Splendour in 2013, filling in for Frank Ocean, but her star has propelled forwards since then such that she’d be a clear headliner in her own right. Not to mention she’s also performing at Fuji Rock Festival in Japan on the same weekend. Just picture the whole amphitheatre singing Green Light in unison, it would be magnificent.
British producer and good mate of our very own Nick Murphy, Bonobo is pretty much a lock for Splendour 2017. He’s just recently announced that he’s heading to New Zealand for a show on Thursday, 27th July in Auckland. He’s also playing Fuji Rock, so it’d be suuuuper weird for Bonobo to only play Japan and NZ, so you can be pretty safe in assuming that he’ll be heading across the ditch to Australia first for a Splendour set.
While Diplo was just in the country for his own solo shows, he’s generally been one to separate his solo work and his work with Major Lazer, so with a conspicuous opening in their schedule in July we could see the electro-dancehall group return for Australia for the first time since 2015. Add to that the fact that Major Lazer have just released new music and were recently locked in on the lineup for Japan’s Fuji Rock Festival, and it could definitely happen.
The LA pop-rock outfit are realistically another act on this list that falls into the hopeful rather than probable in terms of chances of hitting up Splendour. But every year acts are announced that you don’t altogether expect and Haim have a massive Aussie fan base and haven’t been here for some time (since Laneway 2014), so the cycle of touring dictates that it can’t be too long before they return.
Queens Of The Stone Age
Another act that makes this list mostly owing to the fact that they’re headlining Fuji Rock Festival, but we know they’re recording a new album so it wouldn’t be too much of a stretch to suggest that they’d want to bring their new music to Australia. Splendour also has something of a recent history of showcasing rock bands that formed in the later 20th century, with Blur and The Cure performing in the past two years.
Francis and the Lights.
With an outstanding debut album finally under his belt, Francis And The Lights is surely about ready to take on the rest of the world, having wowed audiences across the USA over the past year or so. He’s another that has a distinct gap in his schedule, and is playing a bunch of festivals including Eaux Claires, Electric Forest and Pitchfork Festival in June and July, so maybe, just maybe he’ll think about continuing his run down to Australia for Splendour.
Predictions by our resident clairvoyant, Zanda Wilson.