There’s been a flurry activity surrounding next year’s edition of the Big Day Out in the last few days.

On Tuesday came the second Big Day Out 2014 lineup announcement, Wednesday came news that a band had been pulled from the bill, and then today, the list of Big Day Out 2014 sideshows.

Which all might be quite a bit to take in, let alone some new information from the festival’s recently minted co-promoter AJ Maddah regarding some possible additions to the bill, as well details on further sideshow announcements.

So what better time to run through all the essentials regarding next year’s edition of the long-running Aussie music festival as it enters its 22nd year.

The Lineup Is Getting Even More Bands

Let the detractors say what they will about AJ Maddah buying into the Big Day Out family (and former Big Day Out partner Viv Lees certainly had a bit to say), but for fans at least, the famously fertile twitter feed of the Soundwave boss has provided a direct conduit for fans to get some off-hand details straight from the mouth of the festival’s booker himself.

For instance, take this juicy little reply to a twitterer enquiry as to the progress of tickets sales following the second round announcement, with Maddah replying that there’s still “one or two” bands that could be added to the lineup.

That could be a metaphorical number too, especially when you take into account that this year’s Big Day Out added a whole swag of local bands to each of the five capital city legs just before announcing the timetables.

Either way, as much as Maddah’s social media feed can bring good news, it also brings the bad – especially for fans of Britpop…

There Will Be No Sideshows From Blur

The announcement of Big Day Out sideshows from major lineup players like Snoop Dogg, Major Lazer, and Arcade Fire had some holding their breath for headline dates from Blur – especially given that Big Day Out day promoters yet to confirm or deny whether the band were – like Pearl Jam – playing exclusively at Big Day Out.

Well, if you were holding out on Big Day Out tickets for a chance of an accompanying tour, Blur’s first since 1997, it’s time to snuff out that hope, as a tweet from Maddah has spelled it out loud and clear.

The Big Day Out will be the only chance for Aussie fans to catch up with Blur next January, playing an 80 minute headline set on the ‘Love’ Stage – custom-built to accommodate the band’s full live show.

Pearl Jam, Blur, and Arcade Fire Won’t Clash

The timetables are still to be unveiled, but Big Day Out have already promised that the event’s massive triple headliners won’t clash. Along with the addition of the third Love Stage, the event will retain its traditional rotating Blue and Orange mains stages – ensuring you can catch Pearl Jam, Blur, and Arcade Fire without interruption. A post from back in August explains: “Orange & Blue Stages will have Major Lazer, Snoop Dogg aka Snoop Lion, Arcade Fire & Pearl Jam back to back. Then as Pearl Jam are finishing their two hour set, Blur will begin their one hour and twenty minute set on our new LOVE Stage.”

There’s More Big Day Out Sideshows On The Way

So for the record, no Blur or Pearl Jam sideshows, but the list of bands already announced is unlikely to be final. A statement from organisers states to “keep an eye out” for sideshows from American electronic music producer, Dillon Francis, while tweets from Maddah indicate that sideshows from Ghost, the enigmatic Swedish metal band fronted by skull-faced leader Papa Emeritus II are in the works.

Maddah says Ghost (who recorded a bunch of metal covers with Dave Grohl) “will do” sideshows in a tweet to a fan, with another saying that Melbourne is the likely city for the concert.

Also, given that a number of bands on the Big Day Out 2014 lineup are being paired up for sideshows – including Grouplove & CSS, Toro Y Moi & Portugal. The Man, and  a Brisbane triple-bill featuring Snoop Dogg, Major Lazer & Flosstradamus – don’t be surprised if more bands are announced for team-up dates. (Just imagine, Vista Chino & Cosmic Psychos, or Swedish House Mafia’s Steve Angello with Flume!)

But all that means naught for fans in Western Australia…

No Sideshows For Perth

Yep. According to Maddah there will be “no Perth sideshows“. Period. By way of explanation, the promoter says “there’s no entitlement to side shows. Or to the festival itself for that matter.” Before elaborating in another post.

It’s not the first time that festivals have found it difficult to get a foothold in the WA capital, let alone for Maddah, who had a sour experience fighting local council and government over the Perth leg of Soundwave in February this year, while blaming the Warped Tour’s snub of the city on stuffy state law regulations and the city’s suffocating attitudes to live music (take a bow, Claremont Council).

DIIV Have Cancelled On Big Day Out Tour

In case you missed the news, New York’s shoegaze-influenced outfit DIIV, have cancelled on their Big Day Out appearance. Though the band’s position on the bill has been in contention since September, when the band’s frontman, Zachary Cole Smith, was arrested in a drug bust with his indie singer girlfriend, a statement from DIIV’s management, Life Or Death, says rather than having anything to do with being arrested for possession of a “plastic bag containing 42 decks of heroin,” the band are instead focussing on recording a follow-up to 2012 album Oshin. 

“DIIV has canceled all upcoming tour dates outside the US to focus on recording a new LP,” reads the statementWe apologise to our fans in South America and Australia and will be back with new material shortly,” reads the statement.

Bliss N Eso Not Playing Adelaide Leg, Subbed In For 360

The second lineup additions brought a nice slice of Aussie hip hop to the Big Day out bill, including Sydney-based MC Kerser and the ARIA nominated Bliss N Eso, who will be playing the Gold Coast, Melbourne, Sydney, and Perth. Meaning the hip hop trio, who had one of the year’s fastest selling albums in Circus In The Sky, won’t be making the Adelaide leg.

To make up for it, they’re getting a superstar substitute in the form of Melbourne rapper 360, who will be playing Adelaide only. Set to be quite the show if the outspoken MC’s headline-making set at the Sprung Festival earlier this year, taking aim at “fucking racist Australia”, is anything to go by.

There’s More Than Just Music

This year’s Big Day Out prided itself on the extra-musical activities it offered its festival-goers as much as it did its selection of artists. Namely in the spectacle that was robotic band Compressorhead, the artsy Lilypad, a Mexican Wrestling Bar, and Chow Town – a fancy selection of gastronomic selections that reinvented the festival food experience.

Organisers have already confirmed that Chow Town will be returning for Big Day Out 2014, once again led by culinary geniuses Ben & Elvis (of Porteño/Bodega), so expect other fancy festival features to be announced in the next few weeks.

Big Day Out 2014 Lineup

Vista Chino
The Drones
Violent Soho
Jungle Giants
All The Colours
Bliss N Eso (Not playing Adelaide)
360 (Adelaide Only)

Joining the already announced lineup of:

Pearl Jam * Arcade Fire * Blur
Snoop Dogg aka Snoop Lion * Major Lazer * Steve Angello (Swedish House Mafia) * Flume * The Lumineers * Tame Impala * Dillon Francis * Mac Miller * Ghost * Grouplove * Flosstradamus * Portugal. The Man * Toro Y Moi * The Naked And Famous * Big Gigantic * PEZ * Mudhoney * Cosmic Psychos * Northlane * The 1975 * Loon Lake * Kingswood * Bo Ningen * The Algorithm * DZ Deathrays * Peking Duk * Ben Morris * Rüfüs

Big Day Out 2014 Dates & Venues

Friday 17th January ~ Western Springs, Auckland*
Sunday 19th January ~ Metricon Stadium & Carrara Parklands, Gold Coast
Friday 24th January ~ Flemington Racecourse, Melbourne
Sunday 26th January ~ Sydney Showgrounds, Sydney
Friday 31st January ~ Bonython Park, Adelaide**
Sunday 2nd February ~ Claremont Showgrounds, Perth**

*For New Zealand Big Day Out 2014 lineup and ticketing details, please refer and choose AUCKLAND

**Subject to council approval

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