Is your skin starting to itch yet? Are you craving festival season as much as we are here at Rocktographers?

We get asked A LOT who we think will play the big music festivals around Vancouver Island. Unfortunately, Team Rocktogs wasn’t in the Illuminati or the Freemasons, so we don’t get to hear all those festival secrets early. Everything we hear is just a Riff Rumour these days. But we try to take educated guesses based on proboards, a rumours, other festival line ups, and tour schedules.

We aren’t hedging our bets on huge headliners like Arcade Fire, Nine Inch Nails, Tyler the Creator, or Drake, but here are some bands we’d like to see hit some of Victoria’s festival season this year.

10 – Thunderpussy

Okay, Seattle’s Thunderpussy might not be the most appropriate band for a day of all-ages fun; we’d be the first to admit that. That being said, these girls wail! They are probably one of the most memorable bands we’ve seen in the last few years. Their live performances are almost beyond explanation. A mix of hair metal ego, classic rock skill, and overtly sexual burlesque thematics, they are every music photographer’s dream. Thunderpussy would easily slip into the spot Reignwolf has held for years as most talked about band of the summer.

Where we would like to see them: Rifflandia / Phillips Backyard Weekender / Rock The Shores / Tall Tree Music Festival

9 – Diet Cig

We don’t know much about Diet Cig. They were the toast of SXSW last year and every single photo we’ve seen of this duo performing live is full of high kicks, jumps, and everything which makes a live show memorable. Their debut album is due out in April. Just in time for festival season.

Where we would like to see them: Rifflandia / Tall Tree Music Festival

8 – Foals

UK math rockers Foals might be a long shot, but we think they would melt some minds out here. The band has mentioned that they are working on a new record, but their live performance is out of this world. They played two crazy sold out shows at Vancouver’s Commodore Ballroom last year and it left us wanting more. It’s not often a band gives the photographers the last three songs to shoot instead of the first three. Read Tyson’s review here.

Where we would like to see them: Rifflandia / Phillips Backyard Weekender

7 – The Strumbellas

Right now, you can’t escape Ontario’s The Strumbellas megahits Spirits and We Don’t Know anywhere you listen to music. It’s pretty surprising we haven’t seen them in Victoria before now. The band seems to be popping up on festival lineups across the country right now, so fingers crossed they make it to our little island for festival season.

Where we would like to see them: Rock the Shores / Laketown Rock

6 – July Talk

Ask any photographer who their favourite act was to shoot last two years at Rock The Shores. Every single one is going to answer July Talk. It wasn’t a surprise that, this fall, they sold out their first club show in Victoria within minutes. July Talk is on the warpath this summer, playing almost every major American and Canadian festival you can think of. We’d love to see them and their shenanigans again this summer.

Where we would like to see them: Rifflandia / Phillips Backyard Weekender / Tall Tree Music Festival

5 – Father John Misty

Who didn’t swoon for this crooner Joshua Tillman, aka Father John Misty, when he performed at Rock The Shores a few years ago? Since then, his status has skyrocketed, and he could easily headline any festival around. With his new album Pure Comedy due out soon, we’re sure he will be making some PNW appearances. To think this former Fleet Foxes drummer would be a household name these days?

Where we would like to see them: Rifflandia / Phillips Backyard Weekender

4 – The Decemberists

The Decemberists are mainstays of the Sasquatch Music Festival and call Oregon home. It’s utterly mind boggling that they haven’t played Victoria or Rifflandia ever. Seeing Colin Meloy and his band is an almost religious experience. He once powerfully commanded the entire audience at Sasquatch to lay on the ground while they performed a song. Some people think that all their songs are about pirates, but true fans know that only half their songs are about pirates.

Where we would like to see them: Rifflandia / Phillips Backyard Weekender

3 – Phantogram

Let’s face the facts. Phantogram owes us one. Their last performance at Sugar Nightclub was phoned in, leaving out their stunning lighting and visuals that every other tour stop was treated to. They are another band that is playing lots of festival dates this summer, and we’d love to see them bring their all to a stop here.

Plus, their dog Leeroy wins instagram.

Where we would like to see them: Rifflandia / Rock The Shores / Phillips Backyard Weekender

2 – Tegan & Sara

Tegan & Sara have deep ties to this city and it’s a shame we don’t get to see them all that often anymore. We’d love to see them return for a big headlining spot this year. If Rifflandia is planning on doing any kind of retrospective for their 10 year anniversary, there is no way that these sisters should be left off the bill.

Where we would like to see them: Rifflandia / Rock The Shores

1 – The Shins

As far as we can remember, The Shins have only played Victoria once, five or so years ago. Almost a week after Rifflandia, they filled the Royal Theatre with diehards, hipsters, and fans of The Garden State (while Father John Misty played at Lucky Bar). Several Rocktographers were there but not one took pictures that night. Instead, we basked in the music that we loved. Now that James Mercer and Co. are touring in support of their new record Heartworms, it makes the most sense that they would return now.

Say what you will about later Shins songs, hearing Simple Song at Rifflandia during a headlining set as the sun set would be epic.

Where we would like to see them: Rifflandia / Phillips Backyard Weekender

Did we miss some bands that you think should be playing Victoria’s festival season this summer? Are we out to lunch with our picks? Let’s keep that rumour mill turning.