Australia might not have the most known rock and metal tradition out there. But there is no denying that they are a charming country. Most of the biggest acts usually stop by Australia during their tours, often allowing them to hold some of the genre’s most unique and fun-to-go events.
Rock and metal music festivals in Australia
In that regard, Australia is a country with a lot of different rock and metal festivals that deserve your attention. So here are, in no particular order, the ten best rock and metal festivals in Australia in 2023!
1. Splendour in the Grass
Location: Yelgun, NSW.
Splendour in the Grass has been around since 2001, becoming one of the most prominent festivals in the whole country ever since. Part of the festival’s appeal has been the excellent location, a solid infrastructure, and the fact that there is a lot of musical variety, making it very different from the usual Rock and Metal festivals that metalheads usually go to.
In terms of the most noticeable acts and concerts that have appeared, notorious shows such as The Strokes, Mumford and Sons, and Queens of the Stone Age are among the most famous examples. Meanwhile, it has already been confirmed that the 2023 edition will feature a lot of variety as well, featuring the likes of Mumford and Sons, Lizzo, Sam Fender, and many more.
2. Good Things Festival
Location: Brisbane, Sydney, and Melbourne.
Date: Early December.
This festival takes place in several venues across Australia in early December every year, and it has been going strong since 2018. It is one of the newest festivals in the country in recent times and has made a name for itself due to hosting many different Rock and Metal acts worldwide.
The most recent edition in 2022 has had a lot of variety compared to other Rock and Metal festivals as it had the likes of Sabaton, Deftones, Bring Me the Horizon, Gojira, and Lacuna Coil. One of the most underrated festivals in recent years.
3. Spilt Milk Festival
Date: Usually November or December
Spilt Milk isn’t the traditional Rock and Metal festival most metalheads are associated with but has a lot of musical variety. That has been the point of the festival since it began in 2016, which has proven to be the source of its success.
The festival will take place in late 2023 and feature various artists, including Post Malone, Royel Otis, Dermot Kennedy, and many more. As seen from this list alone, the Spilt Milk festival has a lot of variety, which has made it a unique experience in this market, and a celebration that serves a lot more recognition.
One of the most underrated music festivals in the current market.
4. Groovin’ The Moo Festival
Location: Bunbury, Townsville, Wayville, Bendigo.
Date: Late April or early May.
Like numerous other Rock and Metal festivals in Australia, this has a lot of musical variety. In fact, most heavy acts in this venue are often more of the alternative inclination, so that must be considered.
Groovin’ the Moo has been around since 2005 every year and has been featured in many different places across the country, which has only added to the experience. Musicians such as Billie Eilish, Royal Otis, and Fatboy Slim have been some of the most notorious acts at the festival.
When it comes to the 2023 edition, while it isn’t the most Rock and Metal bill in the world, it features many exciting artists such as The Chats, Eliza Rose, Confidence Man, Amy Shark, and many others.
5. The Grass is Greener Festival
Location: Canberra and Bendigo.
The Grass is Greener Festival can be viewed as an underrated one in Australia. While it doesn’t have the notoriety of others on this list, it has to be said that it has become a consistent venue every year while offering many variety and exciting acts.
The festival has been around since 2016, featuring many artists in various musical genres, including The Veronicas, Will Anderson, Safia, and many more. In terms of organization, locations, logistics, and quality of the musicians invited, this one is often regarded as one of the best music festivals out there in Australia.
Location: Darwin, Northern Territory.
This is the most notorious festival in the Northern Territory of Australia, so it is no surprise that it has so many options for different audiences. It has been going strong since 2003 and has become one of the most prominent music festivals in the entirety of the country.
On that front, it has to be said that this festival offers a lot of different genres, although Rock is a lot more common here than Metal, so that has to be taken into account. Some of the most prominent acts in the 2023 edition included the likes of Ocean Alley, Guy Sebastian, Amy Shark, and Babe Rainbow.
7. Falls Festival
Date: Late December
The Falls Festival is one of Australia’s most important music festivals and features dancing, comedy, and many other things that make it a compelling experience. This is one of the best choices for those who want to enjoy many different things at a festival.
Australia offers a lot of musical variety in many different festivals, and the 2022 edition was a testament to that philosophy, featuring the likes of the Arctic Monkeys, Lil Nas X, and many more. It is this kind of musical variety that has made it one of the most compelling musical offerings in the entirety of Australia, which is something that has to be taken into account.
The Falls Festival is one of the finest options for someone looking for something beyond the typical Rock and Metal festivals. In terms of musical variety, very few festivals in this country can rival the Falls Festival, so it is one of the best choices on this list.
8. UNIFY Gathering
Location: Tarwin Lower, Victoria.
While the future of the UNIFY Gathering is up in the air, as of this writing, it has to be said that it has become one of the most prominent Rock and Metal festivals in Australia in recent years. It has become a consistent venue in terms of quality since its first edition back in 2015, and every bill is often quite good.
On that front, one only has to look at the 2022 edition, featuring the likes of The Amity Affliction, Trophy Eyes, Ocean Grove, and Violent Soho as some of the most known artists on that venue. It is a festival that focuses heavily (pun intended) on many modern Metal bands, so it can be argued that this festival is much more suited for the younger generations.
Be that as it may, it also has to be said that the UNIFY Gathering might be one of the most underrated Rock and Metal festivals out there in Australia, so it deserves a lot more attention on that front.
9. Knotfest 2023
Location: Melbourne, Sydney, and Brisbane
Slipknot is one of the most popular Metal bands of the last thirty years, so it is no surprise that their Knotfest Festival has become one of the most prominent Rock and Metal festivals in recent years. The band led by Corey Taylor has created this event in the last couple of years, and it takes place in many different countries, with Australia being the one where the 2023 edition took place.
There is no denying that Slipknot alone has enough pull to get many people’s attention. Still, this edition also featured the likes of Megadeth, Trivium, Amon Amarth, and In Flames, so it is safe to say that this experience was remarkable. As seen from the recent lineup of the Knotfest Festival, it combines many different styles and inclinations of the Rock and Metal genres.
Whenever a band decides to do a festival of their own, it can often have a lot of varying results. However, it has to be said that the Knotfest has proven to be a massive success for Slipknot, and these guys deserve all the recognition they have gotten for such an exciting proposal.
10. SXSW Sydney
The SXSW festival is a unique case when it comes to celebrations. It is not only centered around music but also has many different types of entertainment, including films, comedy, art, and much more. Some editions have even had premieres of specific cinema over the years.
The 2024 edition is taking place in Sydney in March. It already has a wide variety of acts worth considering, making it one of the most exciting venues in Australia. This experience is made for people who want a little extra from the typical festival, which is worth considering. This is not your everyday offering, so pay attention to that.
This will be an exciting festival in Sydney next year that will give this country more attention in this special industry.