The five most pleasant surprises on the Splendour in the Grass lineup

Splendour in the Grass dominated music news this week with the unveil of their 2019 line-up, which is headlined by millennial hip hop heroes Chance the Rapper and Childish Gambino, as well as world-conquering Aussies Tame Impala and Top Dawg Entertainment crooner SZA. Not just on-trend, it’s exciting as hell.

But as always, Splendour is buoyed by the non-headliners which will make these three days entirely worth the trip up. And there are quite a few surprises on the line-up, pushing back against the lazy “recycled acts” criticism pretty much every festival has to deal with. Here are some of the ones we’re most excited about.

1. The Streets

As 2017 came to a close, Mike Skinner sneakily debuted the first The Streets material heard since he announced the project’s retirement back in 2011. It was raw, hilarious, jab-heavy UK rap perfectly in-line with what made The Streets one of the biggest things in UK hip hop history throughout the 2000’s. Well, now it seems that Skinner has picked things up from there and turned The Streets back into a thing, staging a comeback tour last year – one which no one expected would make its way down to Australia.

2. Santigold

As Santigold’s apparent only Australian performance, the Brooklyn artist’s Splendour set is surely one of the weekend’s most essential. She last played the festival in 2016, and went down as a clear highlight given her live show is witty, raucous, and incredibly fun.

3. James Blake

As with Santigold, Blake was last seen in Splendour territory three years ago. His soulful post-dubstep has been reshaped more times than we care to count, which makes it all the more essential to go see given his latest material (particularly “Mile High” with Travis Scott and newbie “Barefoot in the Park”) has been on point.

4. Friendly Fires

Who knew? Friendly Fires were a bigger deal a decade ago than they are now, but we’re always up for a comeback. They’ve only released a handful of singles since their triumphant return last year, but they’ve all been perfectly in-line with the densely layered viral indie-electro that made tracks like “Skeleton Boy” and “Paris” such monstrous hits in the late 00’s.

5. Dope Lemon

No one was expecting Angus Stone’s Dope Lemon to creep up onto this year’s Splendour program. No one’s complaining. His last EP, Hounds Tooth, only gave us four sweet tracks in 2017, so here’s to hoping he brings out some new material for what should be a comeback set to remember.


Full lineup is below….

Tickets go on sale 9am 11th April, 2019- get them HERE

Feature image courtesy of the official Splendour Website

Chris Singh

Chris Singh is an Editor-At-Large at the AU review, loves writing about travel and hospitality, and is partial to a perfectly textured octopus. You can reach him on Instagram: @chrisdsingh.