A preview to Sjock Festival - Your rock 'n' roll highlight of the year
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Saturday, June 8, 2024 - 09:29
A preview to Sjock Festival - Your rock ‘n roll highlight of the year

Is there a cosier region in Belgium than “De Kempen”? 

This is an example of what linguists refer to as a rhetorical question. Everybody knows the answer is ‘no’. It’s mostly small towns, one funny accent, two highways and the friendliest of people, while also being home to one of our all-time favorite festivals: Sjock Festival.

Sjock Festival has been catering to fans of rockabilly, psychobilly, rock ‘n roll, garage rock, punk and hardcore since 1976, making it Belgium’s longest-running alternative festival. This year marks the 48th (!!!) edition of the festival in Gierle and it once again promises to be something special. Here’s 10 reasons why.


Send off Cock Sparrer with a heartfelt goodbye

Yes, Cock Sparrer played last year as well. But it was friggin’ awesome and they only just released their excellent new album ‘Hand On Heart,’ which also happens to be these OG’s final album. So if you want one last chance to sing along with classics like ’Because You’re Young’, ‘We’re Coming Back’ and ‘England Belongs To Me’ , know that this is it.





Even more legends

Just let us say that one more time… Cock Sparrer is back! But why stop there? Sjock will treat us to even more punk rock and hardcore legends with the likes of the almighty Bad Religion and NYHC powerhouse Agnostic Front. And you know it would be no fun at all without Sick Of It All.

Spreading even more punk rock goodness are Arizona mainstays Authority Zero and the punk rock/post-hardcore blast of energy that is Death Lens. Meanwhile, Grade 2 will be stomping all over Sjock with their Doc Martens and a modern take on old-school punk rock.  





Perfect place to disconnect

Looking for a place to disconnect and recharge? Sjock Festival is the place to be. Every year, my cell phone reception is reduced to zero at the festival site. So if you are still thinking of going on that mindfulness retreat to reconnect with your inner self, know that there is another option that involves loud music, fun people and cold beer. Doesn’t that sound better than breathing exercises?


The invasion from Down Under continues

Compared to other festivals, there always seems to be an inordinate amount of Australian bands playing at Sjock. I have no idea how come, but you won’t hear me complaining. 

Guaranteeing Aussie awesomeness this year are The Chats, the sonic equivalent of a bulldozer that is Cosmic Psychos, pub rockers Bad//Dreems and Dune Rats. And yes yes, we know that New Zealand isn’t Australia, but we’d still like to mention Dick Move here. If all of these bands can fly halfway across the world to play at Sjock, you can make the move from the bar to the stage to check them out.





Titty Twister

From Dick Move to Titty Twister. The place to be if you want to check out slicked back hairdos, retro dresses and the finest of rockabilly bands. Also your best chance to spot a leopard in the wild. Leopard prints that is. But still.


Keep it local

Captain Kaiser. F.O.D.. Toxic Shock. Fifty Foot Combo. Barrel Smoke. Black Leather Jacket. All of them Belgian, all of them good. And would it really be Sjock without the Priceduifkes? Yup. You got it. That’s another rhetorical question.





Just three words

New. Bomb. Turks.

Also: Reverend. Horton. Heat.


The Sadies

After being forced to cancel their show in 2022 due to medical reasons, The Sadies are hellbent on playing Sjock this year! With their mix of country, roots, bluegrass, blues, garage, psychedelic rock and more, they will be raising the coolness factor exponentially.






3 Days at Sjock will only cost you 103 euros. We spent a couple of hours carefully calculating and figured out that this boils down to 2,19 euros per band. If you watch every single band, that is. Best of luck with that.  

Also, 18 food and drink tokens for 50 euros. Fast-forward a few more hours with a calculator in hand and we devised that a beer at Sjock will only set you back 2,78 euros. At another festival, e.g. Wercher, the same will cost you 3,33 euros. Plus an hour of your life.


Keep on Sjocking!

Maybe a bit cheesy, but it takes people like you to keep festivals like Sjock alive. So keep on supporting it. Sjock is still all about what really matters: the music and the fans. And beer.

Tom Dumarey
Tom Dumarey

Lacking the talent to actually play in a band, Tom decided he would write about bands instead. Turns out his writing skills are mediocre at best as well.