Stage clashes can potentially make or break your festival experience; we've all had that headache. When any major festival reveals a stellar roster of talent, it's to be expected. This year's Best Kept Secret, with the lineup in all its crowning glory, most definitely has a handful.
It's disputably our favourite festival lineup of the year, however, and we Festicket Writers are making the journey over to Hilvarenbeek, Holland regardless.
We're sharing our pre-meditated itinerary to ease your woes and indecision, offering our rationale for seeing the said artist at said time. Controversial choices may be made, but if you don't agree with us, well, we're sure you're capable of making up your own minds.
Evidently, we'll consume more music than simply three artists a day, but for the sake of clarity, we've listed the three unmissable artists on each daily lineup as well as pinpointed their potential clashes:
Cate Le Bon
Joining the ranks of label Mexican Summer (Ariel Pink, Connan Mockasin) for her recent album Reward, Cate Le Bon has channelled her guitar-pop quirks into a more polished, melancholic collection of songs that exhibit her influences and ever-flourishing dynamism. As the top pick for last week's New Music Friday, we'll be there front-and-centre.
Set time: 18:45, Stage Five
Clashes: Primal Scream, Stage One & Stereolab, Stage Two
Shifting towards disco-infused lullabies with 2017's Rest and last year's Take 2 EP, Gainsbourg's hushed vocals lure you into a cacophony of swelling arpeggios, harpsichord, and all-encompassing beats. After her set, we'll be gyrating all weekend.
Set time: 21:15, Stage Two
Clashes: Priests, Stage Five
Thankfully, live performances continue through till the early hours, so if you're vibing a late-night pick-me-up, you're in luck. After our long day of travels, that's exactly what we'll need when South London boys Shame hit the stage, providing raucous, sweaty, and bass-driven post-punk for a necessary jolt of energy.
Set time: 01:00, Stage Five
Clashes: DJ Koze, Stage Two & BbyMutha, Stage Seven
There's plenty of wholesome talent to be basked in throughout the afternoon, however, Death Grips, the elusive math-rock-come-hip-hop duo will provide an altogether more frantic and frightful performance to contend with; muscular drums beats, glitchy electronica, and furious delivery from frontman MC Ride cements them as one of the weekend's most must-see acts.
Set time: 19:00, Stage Two
Clashes: Feng Suave, Stage Five & Efrim Manuel Menuck, Stage Seven
Production visionaries and forefathers of electronic music as we've come to know, Kraftwerk have shaped contemporary music beyond what you'd instantly recognise; bringing their eye-watering 3D spectacle to Best Kept Secret, you'll realise the genius of the German pioneers.
Set time: 22:30, Stage One
Clashes: Wooden Shjips, Stage Five & Borokov Borokov, Stage Seven
A cult phenomenon before they'd even had the chance to seize success, Viagra Boy's foremost single 'Sports' became an office staple over many a ping-pong tournament. For that reason alone, there's absolutely no chance we'd miss them.
Set time: 00:30, Stage Five
Clashes: Sophie, Stage Two & Asa Moto, Stage Four
Feeling the blues due to the excessive booze, what better way to spend a sun-kissed Sunday afternoon than in the midst of Big Thief's lush, sweet vocals and hazy guitar harmonies. A tear may be shed, but we'll be rejuvenated all the same.
Set time: 14:15, Stage Two
Clashes: Romperayo, Stage Five & Haron, Stage Seven
Part of the NYC indie/post-punk insurgence at the turn of the century, the ever-moody and ever-majestic Interpol have kept charging on since. Despite losing influential bassist Carlos Dengler several years ago, the now-three-piece have continued as an ardent creative force releasing their most celebrated album in almost a decade with 2018's Marauder.
One of my personal favourites, not even the impending dread of the festival's 'day-after' ordeal can keep me from the front row.
Set time: 21:45, Stage Two
Clashes: Lizzo, Stage Five & Ajabu, Stage Four
Christine and the Queens
Proving her mettle with a triumphant headline performance at London's All Points East last weekend, Héloïse Adelaide Letissier (aka Chris) merges her 80's funk and soul sensibilities with 90's influenced choreography; engaging, heartbreaking, and hip-shaking, it's a stellar way to end a stacked weekend of music.
Set time: 23:15, Stage One
Clashes: None, so no excuse not to see her!