In about five years, Governors Ball as emerged as the New York music festival. It’s become an annual event that enforces originality and evolving beyond your limitations, and despite being stuck behind the likes of Coachella and Primavera, it thrives as the unofficial intro into summer. Why? Because Gov Ball wouldn’t have it any other way. If they did, they wouldn’t have booked a 70-plus act lineup that features The Black Keys, Lana Del Rey, and My Morning Jacket, and they definitely wouldn’t have presented the opportunity to see Sharon Van Etten and A-Trak throw down on a larger stage. So without further ado, here are some highlights to look out for if you’re planning to vibe out at Randall’s Island Park.
For all things Gov Ball NYC, stay tuned for our interviews + photos and visit the festival’s website.
FUTURE’s 3:00PM SET AT GOVBALLNYC STAGE
#FutureHive is real. It’s realer than 56 Nights, it’s realer than Beast Mode, and it’s realer than the video for “Codeine Crazy” because Future is heavy into Future right now. Hell, Future is so into Future that the folks at Governors Ball game him an opening day set at 3:00pm in the afternoon. Don’t sleep on it.
EVERYTHING AT GOTHAM TENT
Just look at the schedule – Flying Lotus, SBTRKT, Ratatat, Future Islands, Rustie, Kiesza, MØ, Odesza, and Bishop Nehru are all set for the tent and given its proximity to the other three stages, it’s a clear winner. Gotham is known to get mobbed pretty early so plan accordingly. It’d be a shame if you missed FlyLo’s life-changing closer because you needed to re-up on vegan munchies and ZICO.
THE ARTISTS YOU’VE NEVER HEARD OF
Like any other summer festival, Gov Ball has it’s share of headliners and faves (see DIIV, White Lung), but there’s also a lot of promising unknowns. Tip: Charlotte OC, Chronixx, The Districts, DMA’s, and Holychild are all musts if you need a new fix while you wait for Currents and Summertime ’06.
THE AMOUNT OF FOOD THAT’S OUT THERE
The likes of Cafe Habana, Luke’s Lobster, Momofuku Milk Bar, and Brooklyn Soda Works will be there, but there’s also Morris Truck, Taqueria Diana, Ramen Burger, Mighty Quinn’s, Pizza Nova, Coco & Co, and Wandering Bear Coffee Co. In other words, bring some hand wipes and a bib you filthy animal.
THE RETURN OF SENNHEISER’s SILENT DISCO
Need a break in between sets? Visit Sennheiser’s Silent Disco. The audio experts are setting up a massive silent disco tent for the third year in a row (near the festival entrance) and they’re also hosting listening stations that will feature their must-own headphone models: the Momentum 2.0 and the Urbanite XL.
FLUME’s POST-FLUME, POST-BJÖRK SET
It’s been nearly three years since Harley Streten released his debut on Future Classic and while there’s not a lot at stake, there’s a lot to look forward to. He recently dropped a new single with Miike Snow’s Andrew Wyatt and his live setups rarely miss a beat – flirting with Lorde, Disclosure, RL Grime, Arcade Fire, and What So Not. Did we mention Flume performs directly after Björk on Saturday?
THE “ENDLESS SUMMER” COCKTAIL LOUNGES
Gov Ball NYC is hosting three drink-friendly activations this year, including the Tito’s Airstream Lounge, the Miller Time Lounge, and the Bacardi Untameable Bar. They’re not exactly “endless”, but the retreats do offer cocktails, premiums, and a comfortable space to reset when the mosh gets a little too hands-y.
EVERY OFFICIAL GOV BALL AFTER DARK SHOW
New York City is still the city that never sleeps and luckily, there’s Gov Ball After Dark. This year’s take is absolutely stacked as there’s Conor Oberst at MHOW, Flying Lotus at Le Poisson, SBTRKT at Verboten, Little Dragon at Brooklyn Bowl, Atmosphere at Irving Plaza, and White Lung at Knitting Factory.
DRAKE’s SPOT AS A HEADLINER
Drake’s Coachella moment in April wasn’t a total disaster, but there’s no telling if he will actually make a statement in New York City. Will his Friday headliner be Jungled-out? Probably. Will it be a Summer Jam showing that spots multiple cameos and puts If You’re Reading This on the electric, IDGAF level it deserves? Only time will tell at this point. All we know is “10 Bands” and “Star67” better be in there.
HOW EASY IT IS TO HAVE FUN
If all else fails you, make out with someone new and get “On A Wave”.