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Top 5 Winter Festivals 2012/2013

Our roundup of the 5 festivals you should be taking yourself to while Ibiza takes some time off to recover.

Snowbombing -

Easily the best proper winter festival, on account of it being the only festival surrounded by snow we're mentioning (weather permitting). Based out of Mayrhofen in Austria the festival lasts for 6 days between the 1st and 6th April. Good news though! You can extend this by partaking in the road trip whereby revellers and DJ's alike all drive in convoy from London to Mayrhofen, stopping only to enjoy some of the set activities along the way.

Musically, the 2013 edition of Snowbombing is the best to date. Mixing live acts with DJs (we all know how cool an idea that is - Ibiza 123!) the team have put together a truly outstanding lineup. With the likes of Kasabian, Disclosure and Katy B rubbing shoulders with Carl Cox, Seth Troxler, Maceo Plex, James Zabiela and the Innervisions guys to name but a few, you can guarantee most musical bases are covered across the various venues and stages. Unbeatable.

The Warehouse Project -

This mammoth undertaking has been going for several years now, across a variety of venues, the last of which being a very very cool underground car park beneath Manchester's Piccadilly train station. Times have changed though, and a new venue had been tested out this year with the big launch coming late September as being a large warehouse just down the road from Manchester United's stadium - Old Trafford.

The tagline for the festival is "for 12 weeks, this city is ours" and that is certainly the case. More or less every electronic act or DJ worth his salt will play over that period, with Spotlight taking in the Cocoon party not so long ago. The place had been talked up as the best 'festival' and venue to date, and seeing the place in person we have to agree. No expense has been spared production wise, and the lineups are gobsmackingly good. With too much good music to mention, you're best checking out their website and buying a ticket before everything has sold out, things are already on their way to being just so.

Stereosonic -

Not content with hosting one festival in one city, this Australian creation will take on the cities of Sydney, Perth, Melbourne, Adelaide and Brisbane. Melbourne and Adelaide both happen on the same day with the other a few before or after. Clearly this festival is of a giant scale, with the venues typically being stadiums such as the Olympic Park in Sydney (the one they used in the Sydney Olympics in 2000 kids), and so naturally you can expect massive stages with massive acts, with massive production and a massive crowd. Generally speaking things are big.

The more commercial acts are heavily represented with Calvin Harris, Chuckie and recent 'trance divorcee' Tiesto all in force, whilst the festival folk have kept the underground kids happy with Nina Kraviz, Joris Voorn and one of the lower level Space residents. You might have heard of him? Carl Cox is his name apparently. It is thanks to festivals like this that we have seen such a rise in the number of Australians travelling to Ibiza for the 2012 season, they're a lovely bunch of people so lets hope we see more next year.

BPM Festival -

The clock is ticking down from just shy of 50 days until this beast kicks off in the not-so-obvious location of Playa del Carmen in Mexico. This will be the sixth installment of the festival, proving the popularity and desire for music in the area is large and growing, and all have been rewarded by a lineup that, as the band Berlin once said, can only 'Take My Breath Away'. Wehey! That all leads nicely (and loosely) on to the strong Berlin contingent that is represented, with all manner of artists based in the area judging the festival to be cool enough to warrant their appearance.

Skimming over the lineup, which shockingly is only the first phase of announced acts, you've got all that Ibiza clubbers love. How's Art Department, the Apollonia crew, Stacey Pullen, Luciano, Richie Hawtin and Sasha for a taster for you? Otherwise just think of a great DJ you saw over the 2012 season and just assume they will be playing at BPM, because they probably are. Insane.

Taking place over a number of days, but essentially bringing in the New Year, there are worse ways to launch in to 2013 with a smile on your face.

Timewarp Mannheim -

Boasting three festivals across three countries each year, Timewarp has racked up enough 'cool points' to justify its position as one of the most respected electronic music festivals there is. We've already taken in the delights of Italy in September, but fear not as Holland is yet to come in December and then the big one in Mannheim, Germany, acts as a warm up for the Ibiza season in April. These festivals are very much a coming together of like-minded techno purists, showcasing the very best (of the best, sir!) the scene has to offer alongside world class sound, video, lighting and laser production.

The Dutch lineup has been announced with all the people you would expect - Sven Vath, Chris Liebing, Marcel Dettman etc. But the big lineup for Mannheim is yet to be announced. Again, assume all the great techno acts will be there, Hawtin and the ENTER. massive included. So, if techno is your thing then Mannheim in April is where you should be. All with a few weeks break before you all jet off to see us in Ibiza, of course.

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