If you're scouting around Europe for your next techno fix, you'd be forgiven for automatically settling on Germany, and more specifically, Berlin. But what if you're looking for something a little less obvious, but just as dedicated? Easy.
As good a reputation as the Germans have, there's a wealth of techno festivals and nights all across the continent, showcasing names that wouldn't be out of place in Berghain. Here are ten of our favourites.
DGTL Amsterdam & Barcelona
Festival lineup (2020): Amsterdam: Nina Kraviz, Sven Väth, Blawan, Bonobo [DJ set], Marcel Dettmann, Honey Dijon, Mall Grab, Paul Kalkbrenner
Commanding deep respect across Europe and beyond, DGTL's underground blend of house and techno are at home in the NDSM Docklands on Amsterdam's waterfront, as well as Barcelona's infamous beachside Parc del Fòrum, making the brand an integral part of both city's electronic music calendars.
When & where: 3rd - 4th April 2021; Amsterdam, Netherlands / 3rd - 4th September 2021; Barcelona, Spain
Festival lineup (2020): Richie Hawtin, Seth Troxler, Charlotte de Witte, Amelie Lens, Ben Klock, Maceo Plex, Loco Dice, Sven Väth
Sweep down south and to the beaches of Croatia, and you'll find yourself a techno Eden at Sonus.
Legends and underground pioneers lead the way on sand and sea, while Zrće Beach's two heavyweight clubs, Papaya and Kalypsa, anchor the whole festival in classic European style.
When & where: 15th - 19th August 2021; Novalja, Croatia
Festival lineup (2021): Helena Hauf, DJ Harvey, DJ Stingray, Floating Points [live], DJ Harvey, Karenn [live], Objekt, Robert Hood [live]
A hive of forward-thinking electronic music, Dekmantel has cemented itself as the festival of choice for those looking to experience new trends.
It's a brand that steers clear of headline grabbing names and gimmicks, instead encouraging and rewarding risk-taking. As a result, Dekmantel has become many DJs' favourite festival to play.
When & where: 4th - 8th August 2021; Amsterdam, Netherlands
Time Warp DE
Festival lineup (2020): Richie Hawtin, Nina Kraviz, Adam Beyer, Amelie Lens, Sven Väth, Charlotte de Witte, Laurent Garnier, Chris Liebing
I know what I said, but we couldn't neglect Germany completely. The 20+ year old techno institution that is Time Warp rises up from deep house and minimal through dance and techno, with six floors of distinct visuals, lighting and lasers.
When & where: 30th October 2021; Mannheim, Germany
Festival lineup (2020): Amelie Lens, Carl Cox, Jeff Mills, Helena Hauff, Charlotte de Witte, Adam Beyer, Ben Klock, Maceo Plex
Mention Awakenings to any techno fan, and just watch their eyes light up. The Dutch powerhouse has been putting on one-night parties and wicked weekenders since 2000, with their flagship festival now the jewel in this iconic brand's crown.
When & where: 26th - 27th June 2021; Spaarnwoude, Netherlands
Festival lineup (2020): Amelie Lens, Nina Kraviz, Dax J, Daniel Avery, Laurent Garnier, Ben Sims, I Hate Models, FJAAK [live]
Bringing with them a lineup of mainstay and underground house maestros and techno titans, Glitch Festival showcases its on-point lineup across rooftop pool parties, secret rave caves, chaotic boat parties and inspiring headline sets at its self-proclaimed "house and techno fortress."
When & where: 14 - 16th August 2021; Rabat, Malta
Festival lineup (2021): Jon Hopkins [live], Adam Beyer, Amelie Lens, Nina Kraviz, Blawan, Robert Hood [live], Maceo Plex, Dax J
Junction 2 is a London-based techno festival, curated by brands including Adam Beyer's Drumcode label.
Held inside the capital's Boston Manor Park, quite literally underneath a motorway junction, the festival welcomes the genre's finest names to come and play inside its urban-cum-natural setting.
When & where: 4th - 5th June 2021; London, UK
Festival lineup (2021): The Chemical Brothers + more artists to be announced
Manifesting all over Barcelona, Sónar keeps its finger on the pulse of the electronic music scene, showcasing leading names as well as those soon to break.
For those looking to increase their techno knowledge, there's also the festival's twin event Sónar+D, where lectures, workshops, performances and installations open up the genre from a unique angle.
When & where: 17th - 19th June 2021; Barcelona, Spain
Festival lineup (2020): Carl Cox, Amelie Lens, Laurent Garnier, Paco Osuna, Joseph Capriati, Ricardo Villalobos, Tale of Us, Solomun
Summer raving from noon to midnight with unmissable afterparties in between, Kappa FuturFestival has become not only a chance to hear some quality sounds, but to also sample the Italian music scene at its best.
When & where: 3rd - 4th July 2021; Turin, Italy
NEOPOP Electronic Music Festival
Festival lineup (2021): Nina Kraviz, Dax J, DJ Nobu, Dr. Rubinstein, Loco Dice, Ricardo Villalobos, Richie Hawtin, 999999999 [live]
Annually curating a lineup of underground leaders, Neopop is anchored in the darker side of things and is a European haven for techno lovers.
For three days the festival takes over the town's scenic port and fills the historic setting with progressive dance beats.
When & where: 11th - 14th August 2021; Viana do Castelo, Portugal
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