| | |

Wild Times at Summer Sonic 2015

Every year between July and August is Japan’s music festival season. One of the crown jewels of this time is the two day Osaka and Tokyo music event Summer Sonic. This year, your author attempted this perilous quest in her first ever Japanese music festival experience and what a way to enter the scene it was.

Tickets are easily purchased through the conbini, but if this option is unavailable then purchasing online or at the entrance is also an option. Costing around 15000 yen for a single or 23000 for a two day pass, this festival is moderately priced (at least to my Australian perspective) and this year fell just after pay day, so it was convenient all round.

Accommodation over this weekend was a little difficult to find as so many places were already booked out well in advance. A few others and I were able to secure a neat little apartment in Kujo for the night after some serious hunting on AirBnB. With this in mind, I recommend that anyone planning to go to any major event in Osaka should look into accommodation around a month or so in advance in order to get the best value for money and selection.

Getting to and from the event, while not necessarily inconvenient, is time consuming. Shuttle buses to the arena left from Cosmo Square and Sakurajima with virtually no waiting time. Unfortunately, getting to these two stations from Umeda involved a bit of train line hopping and backtracking. This was especially true in the case of your author who managed to get quite lost more than once.

Entering the arena is easy: just hand over your ticket, get your armband and head in. There were four stages to choose from in Osaka. Ocean stage was the largest and held most of the headlining acts including ZEDD, Macklemore, Ariana Grande, Pharrell Williams, Imagine Dragons and The Script. Mountain stage was the second largest and held what would be best described as the alternative headliners such as Marilyn Manson, The Prodigy, Modestep and Carly Rae Jepsen. Sonic Stage boasted air conditioning and hosted some of the lesser known artists in the industry like Kodaline, The Manic Street Preachers, MEW, Char, and Sheppard. Finally, Flower stage hosted primarily Japanese artists and some of the more eclectic music to be found at the festival such as Epik High, Monkey Majik, Totalfat, chay, and Silent Siren. In addition, the Flower Stage had the nicest hang out spots for the more relaxed parts of the day.

Having been to a variety of festivals in Australia, your author was pleasantly surprised by Japan’s take on music festivals. Most acts were on either at their scheduled time or only shortly after, queues for food and drinks were efficient, crowds were pumped but not at all aggressive or uncomfortable, the grounds were kept clean and the bathrooms were only just a tiniest bit scary as opposed to the full on horror experienced at many Australian festivals.

ImagineDragonsThe crowds were a riot with enthusiasm. The lead singer of Imagine Dragons fell on your author and she will never wash her hands again because that man was a god. ZEDD had light and sound that left the crowds screaming for more. The Script, despite mostly singing songs about heartbreak, had people laughing. Macklemore whipped crowds into a frenzy and Ariana Grande really is tiny but my gosh, does she have a set of lungs on her. It was a magnificent weekend; nearly every act seen went above and beyond expectations. If ever you have the chance, try out a Japanese music festival, especially one like Summer Sonic, I guarantee it’s an experience you will always treasure.

Rackle Beaman


Similar Posts