The Great Escape 2018

Festival guide

Because festival season wouldn’t be anywhere near complete without a trip to the seaside to discover the next big thing, you’ll find thousands of music fans flocking to Brighton between 17th and 19th May for The Great Escape. As ever, this year’s festival boasts an embarrassment of musical riches, so we’ve scoured the line-up on your behalf to bring you a shortlist of the must-see acts. Discover our top picks and the best of the rest of the bill below.

Top picks

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    Let's Eat Grandma

    Teenage pals Rosa Walton and Jenny Hollingworth entranced listeners with the atmospheric, outsider pop on their 2016 debut, I, Gemini, and they’ve wasted no time in writing a sequel. Interestingly, forthcoming follow-up I’m All Ears finds the duo ditching that slightly witchy, ‘Heavenly Creatures’ vibe and bringing experimental, often borderline-industrial electronic production to the fore, with a little help from PC Music’s SOPHIE. Get an early preview of their triumphant transformation during Friday’s set at The Old Market.

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    Octavian

    Already boasting a co-sign from Canadian uber-star and self-professed Anglophile Drake, Octavian’s career has gotten off to a dream start. Since ‘Party Here’ graced Drizzy’s Instagram in 2017, the Lille-raised, South London-based rapper has continued to impress with spacious Sam Wise-collaboration ‘100 Degrees’ and March’s ‘Hands’. Indeed, the latter’s employment of sparse piano and soulful, AutoTuned vocals suggested we’ve only scratched the surface when it comes to exploring Octavian’s potential.

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    Rina Sawayama

    Drawing on influences as diverse as Blackout-era Britney, gaming and Japanese singer-songwriter Utada Hikaru, this Niigata-born Brit delights in playing with notions of “good taste” with irresistible pop as the by-product. Last year’s mini-album, Rina, gave a good demonstration of her scope, ranging from *NSYNC-worthy bangers to windswept powerballads. Live, she's a total revelation so do not, under any circumstances, miss her in Brighton: she plays Coalition on Thursday and Wagner Hall on Friday.

Big names

The Go! Team - SEMICIRCLE
Gaika - The Spectacular Empire II

Don't miss

More from the line-up

  • Goat Girl

    Interview

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    We never have a game plan; it’s just us doing what we think will be best.

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  • Alma

    Interview

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    Charli XCX just called loads of friends to come party. We trashed the house...

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  • Dream Wife

    Interview

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    We’ve all overcome a lot to be able to do what we do in Dream Wife, in terms of personal battles.

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