MUSIC: Meet all of Helsinki's tribes in one go
All of the great music festivals in Helsinki have turned into great celebrations of culture; huge gatherings, where prime music is enjoyed with food, drink, art, and first of all people and summer days that go on forever.
9.–10.6. Alt. Everything
The Helsinki festival summer starts with the latest and most alternative party. Sideways is the alt. urban culture and music festival where the strong winds of progress blow. It is small-scale, fun and devoutly experimental in every way.
Whether it comes down to music, food or art, it is essential to experience the new or perhaps the newest in the scene. The
programme has been curated with care. Sideways is always sold out. One big name tops the bill and this year it is Röyksopp
30.6.–2.7. No Pain No Gain
Finns are metal mad. Heavy metal has never been in fashion, nor out of fashion in the country. A lifestyle could never be. Hence it is no surprise that the largest metal festival in the Nordic Countries, Tuska (Pain), is held in Helsinki.
Tuska Open Air Metal Festival brings together fans of heavy music at the old power plant grounds in Suvilahti. Tuska is all
black and does not recognise any shades of grey. The 20th anniversary programme is as intense and heavy as ever before.
This year, the main acts include Mastodon, HIM, Suicidal Tendencies, Mayhem, Brujeria, Apocalyptica, Electric Wizard and
The side events and after-party clubs around the city allow you to join in on an even more oppressive feeling around the town. Tuska is also very visible in the city. Fear ye not! All the black-clad goons are actually extremely friendly Finns, trying hard to cover up their lovely side.
29.7. Salt and Pepper
Kaisafest is always a pleasant oneday minifestival in Kaisaniemi Park, right in the heart of Helsinki. This year, head-lining is the pukka, chilli-peppery act known for their live performances, Red Hot Chili Peppers, with top Finnish names warming up. Easy-going, comfy and very chilled. Head to the park!
4.–6.8. Fancy Some EDM?
Weekend is actually more of a tremendous party or the world’s largest outdoor club rather than a festival. As the other music festivals in Helsinki attempt to caress the soul, Weekend concentrates on your feet and how to make them move in the most effective way.
To make that happen the programme essentially depends on the top names in EDM. This year, the gigantic Helsinki home party is headlined by the likes of Armin van Buuren, Chainsmokers, Clean Bandit and Deadmau5. Party on and let’s dance!
11.–13.8. Just Go with the Flow
Right after Helsinkians have finished their holidays and returned to their hometown, as summer slowly turns into autumn, Flow Festival bursts into action. The pride and joy of the town is one of the most remarkable urban culture and music festivals in the world and is marked in golden letters in the calendars of every fashionable Helsinkian. People go there to see and to be seen, everyone is at Flow. That is: everyone.
Music, the arts, food and talks – all of them as trendy and stylish as possible. Every year the programme is fiercely debated, especially the top acts flirting with the mainstream; and every year people are charmed by them at the old grounds of the power plant.
This summer, the top acts include Frank Ocean, Lana del Rey, The xx, Aphex Twin and Young Thug, with up-and-coming indie, electro and techno on the sidelines for the more demanding festival-going avant-garde. Be charmed, surrender to the flow.
4.5.–19.6. The revenue logic of the music industry has changed and what a stroke of luck it has been for Helsinki. The biggest
stars are now happy to entertain Helsinkians too. We like to be entertained so bring it on!
Patricia Kaas. 12 & 13.5.
Enrique Iglesias. 7.5.
Hans Zimmer. 16.5.
Bruno Mars 22.5.
The 1975. 14.6.
Foo Fighters. 19.6.