In what seems to be another blow to the festival economy, The xx just announced the cancellation of their festival, Day + Night, that was scheduled to take place on July 14th in Reykjavik, Iceland. The xx’s announcement marks the third cancellation of a major music festival in recent months, the other two being Fyre and Pemberton. However, unlike the other two festivals, where financial and organizational difficulties led to their abrupt cancellations, The xx cited environmental concerns as a reason for calling theirs off.
The Reykjavik Grapevine, a local Icelandic newspaper, released a statement from the festival’s organizers, explaining that the “location for the festival at Skógafoss has recently been added to the Environment Agency of Iceland’s list of endangered areas.” The organizers conceded that there would not be “enough time for the promoters to ensure that the event will have no impact at all on the site.”
The statement goes on to ensure festival goers that full ticket refunds will be provided, including reimbursements for flights and accommodations where necessary.
The xx announced the festival in May of this year. Headliners included an electrifying lineup of Kamasi Washington, Earl Sweatshirt, Warpaint, Sampha, and of course, The xx and Jamie xx, among others. The band told fans in their initial announcement, “We fell in love with Iceland while recording some of I See You there a few years ago and we are so looking forward to returning and bringing some of our friends, from near and far.” It seems that The xx were inspired to put on the Day + Night festival in large part by the location, which they came across while recording their album “I See You.” The stage was set to be located beside a large waterfall, and the hope was to create an intimate musical experience between the bands and their fans.
Unfortunately, none of these musicians will be able to play. Organizers of the festival scrambled to put together a new location, but were unable to find somewhere suitable with the limited time they had. The effort put into finding a new venue does hopefully suggest that the organizers and The xx are keen to put on the festival in some shape or form at a later date, although the location that inspired the festival idea is now off the table.
Photography credit: Kalyn Oyer