Governors Ball 2015

Recap: Governors Ball 2015

By Will Oliver, August 17th 2015 — with 1 comment


(Taken by Anthony Bauer)

There was plenty to love at Governors Ball 2015 this past June, featuring triumphant performances from headliners such as My Morning Jacket and Ryan Adams, to unforgettable performances from big groups like Hot Chip, St. Vincent and Weird Al, to up and comers like Royal Blood and The Districts, as well as the always unforgettable Future Islands. There was certainly something for everyone.

Since I strung together individual posts of photo sets and recaps, here’s a handy recap giving you everything all in one place. I’ve included a running list of all the recaps/photo sets in order of each day and set times, as well as my top 10 favorite sets of the festival. This year we also got a featured post from our very own Anthony Bauer, who offered a recap of the happenings from his perspective. Find all that good stuff posted below, along with some of our favorite photos taken from the weekend.
Read the rest of this entry »

Governors Ball 2015 – A Different Perspective

By Anthony Bauer, August 11th 2015 — with 1 comment


The Governors Ball Music Festival has taken place in New York City every year since 2011, and every year since I’ve thought about going but never committed to actually going. It’s never been due to the lineup, but mostly because I’ve ended up being busy whenever the festival is in town. All of that changed this year though as I found out that I had the opportunity to go and without any hesitation, I immediately said absolutely.

I was thrilled as the lineup this year was amazing, but at the same time very stressful (I’ll explain in a minute). The lineup featured almost everything I’d want to see, all in one easy to navigate location. The stressful part about the lineup is the stressful part with most any festival lineups – you have to compromise at one point. The real struggle is when you’re watching one band but you want to check out another band that is playing across the field. Or, you want to get a good spot for another band at a different stage so you keep asking yourself, “do I leave, or do I stay?” It’s an absolute horrible feeling having to leave one band to get a good spot for another band, but all in all, thats what festivals are all about – making compromises. They’re necessary compromises in order to see everybody you wouldn’t normally get to see all in one place. Read the rest of this entry »

The Black Keys at Governors Ball 2015

By Will Oliver, August 11th 2015 — with 1 comment

1_Black Keys_Governors Ball 2015

By now I’ve nearly lost count of how many times I’ve seen The Black Keys, although it’s certainly getting close to double digits. Throughout the years I’ve seen the Akron, Ohio duo of Dan Auerbach and Patrick Carney play shows during various points of their career: before they blew up, during their rise to fame, and now their comfortable state as one of the bigger “arena” bands in rock and roll. Although the stages have got bigger, the group’s live performances have usually been a good time.

But I was a tad underwhelmed with their performance at Governors Ball, the final headlining spot of the weekend (they played against Lana Del Rey). The band sounded fine musically, but it was pretty much the same set I’ve seen time and time again, only you could sense that they too were fatigued by the Turn Blue run. It seemed like a good portion of their set was spent asking the crowd to help get amped up, instead of them just doing it by rocking out harder. They were on autopilot.

It wasn’t a bad show by any means, but it seemed like a bit of a let down considering how big of a band they are, and that they were closing out the festival. Hopefully the next time I see them they’ll be refreshed and recharged to put on the show that we all know they’re perfectly capable of.

Find some more shots from their performance posted below.
Read the rest of this entry »

Hot Chip at Governors Ball 2015

By Will Oliver, August 10th 2015 — with 2 comments

1_Hot Chip_Governors Ball 2015

Going into Governors Ball one of the sets I was most excited for was Hot Chip. Every single time that I’ve seen them perform live is as joyous as the last, and you just know you’re going to get a set full of all of the songs you want to hear, only brought to life in ways you forgot were possible.

They kicked off their performance with Why Make Sense? (out via Domino Records) lead single “Huarache Lights,” a scorcher that was taken to new levels live, getting the dance party started at once. They followed it with an almost unfair group of their best singles: “One Life Stand,” “Night & Day,” “Flutes,” and “Over and Over.” Hot Chip have mastered the art of blending rock elements with electronic dance grooves, finding an equilibrium between the two that is truly the best of both worlds.


1. Huarache Lights
2. One Life Stand
3. Night & Day
4. Flutes
5. Over and Over
6. Look at Where We Are
7. Cry for You
8. Need You Now
9. Ready for the Floor
10. I Feel Better
11. Let Me Be Him
12. Dancing in the Dark (Bruce Springsteen Cover)
Read the rest of this entry »

“Weird Al” Yankovic at Governors Ball 2015

By Will Oliver, August 10th 2015

1_Weird Al Yankovic_Governors Ball 2015

When the Governors Ball lineup was announced one of the standout booking in the lineup was “Weird Al” Yankovic, something different from the other major festivals around the country. I never considered actually getting to see Weird Al play live, so having the convenience of him playing a festival I cover every year was truly a cherry on top.

While in the photo pit waiting for him to go on, we were told minutes before his set that we were allowed to shoot the entire show from the pit, an unusual change of the first 3 song rule, especially surprising at a festival, where usually things get stricter (as they did with Noel Gallagher + The Black Keys).

I would soon find out that this was because for nearly every song, Weird Al and his bandmates would change into costume in order to go along with the theme of the song. He brought out his famed fat suit for “Fat,’ brought out the cooking show table and tin foil for “Foil,” and brought out the necessary attire for “Amish Paradise,” “Party In The CIA,” “Handy,” and of course “White & Nerdy,” with a segway and all.

It was every bit as fun as you’d expect, and surely one of the most memorable sets of the entire weekend, if not year.
Read the rest of this entry »

Tame Impala at Governors Ball 2015

By Will Oliver, August 10th 2015 — with 1 comment

1_Tame Impala_Governors Ball 2015

Kevin Parker is taking over the world one album of a time as Tame Impala. They’ve been a top, large font headliner in nearly every major music festival across the country (including Boston Calling), and have been getting some of the best reviews of the year with their most recent album, Currents (out via Interscope Records).

Seeing him lead the rest of the Australian band through highly charged festival sets is even more astonishing when you remember that he’s a one man band in the studio. That’s not the case on stage, where the 5-piece band come together to create a powerful tour de force, one that takes psychedelic stoner dreams and turns them into reality. Their set at Governors Ball was loud and a thing of wonder, a true testament to their ever increidlbe journey, that just keeps on going. It seems like their success simply knows no limit.

Find some more photos from their Governors Ball performance below.
Read the rest of this entry »

Royal Blood at Governors Ball 2015

By Will Oliver, August 10th 2015 — with 1 comment

1_Royal Blood_Governors Ball 2015

Royal Blood have had one hell of a year. It was just a few months ago where I caught them at the rather intimate Marlin Room at Webster Hall, where they put on one of the best shows I saw in 2014. Then overnight they caught fire, booked for much larger shows opening up for Foo Fighters at stadiums like Citi Field (coverage coming soon). All this with just their debut album under their belt (released via Warner Bros Records).

Their set at Governors Ball came during arguably the hottest point of the entire three-day weekend, but the duo of Mike Kerr and Ben Thatcher were plenty up to task. They delivered a triumphant chest pounding set that raised the energy in the crowd about 10 bars, impressing me all over again.

Unsurprisingly it ended up being one of my favorite sets of the entire weekend, but I’ve come to expect this sort of thing from the duo by now.

Find some more shots from their Governors Ball performance posted below.
Read the rest of this entry »

Strand Of Oaks at Governors Ball 2015

By Will Oliver, August 10th 2015

1_Strand Of Oaks_Governors Ball 2015

Timothy Showalter, better known as Strand Of Oaks, recently released his new album HEAL via Dead Oceans. The record is his 4th released to date, and back in June he stopped in to play tracks from it, along with the rest from his still expanding discography.

Their classic rock sound was a good fit for their mid-day slot at Governors Ball, with Showalter in complete awe and sometimes disbelief at the large crowd that huddled around the stage for their performance. He best get used to, there’s going to be plenty more of them in their bright and exciting future.

Find some more shots from their Gov Ball set posted below.
Read the rest of this entry »

DMA’s at Governors Ball 2015

By Will Oliver, August 10th 2015

1_DMAs_Governors Ball 2015

Australian rockers DMA’s have had a very active summer, playing nearly every major festival in the United States. I caught them back in May at Boston Calling, and then once again at Governors Ball.

The group played tracks off their recently released EP (Via Mom + Pop Music), with the same swagger as many of the Brit rock bands of the 90s, with a bit of their sound as well. These lads lack no confidence, if anything, they’re made to play stages of this size. I’m interested to see what they have up their sleeve for their eventual debut album, which is sure to feature many of the anthems that they have been showing off live.

Find some photos from their performance at Governors Ball posted below.
Read the rest of this entry »

Ryan Adams at Governors Ball 2015

By Will Oliver, August 10th 2015

1_Ryan Adams_Governors Ball 2015

Day two of Governors Ball came down to headlining sets from Ryan Adams or Deadmau5, probably the easiest headlining “conflict” of the weekend. Adams himself even found time to poke fun at the conflict (and the bits of the producer’s performance that bleed over to Adams’). After a heartfelt performance of “Kim” (from his most recent album), Adams called out to Deadmau5 with a obvious dig toward the producer: “Try to make this song on your fucking iPhone.” He followed it with one of the most memorable (and relevant) quotes of the entire festival: “It’s like we’re living in a fucking Terminator nightmare.”

Adams had plenty of more hilarious moments, but it didn’t deter from his magical headlining set in any way. This was my first time seeing Adams live, and I have to say, even with all my expectations, he managed to blow me away with every single song. He’s a true songwriter and a real sincere performer, and he found a way to connect with every single person in the audience, something that’s not easy to do.

His performance at Governors Ball made me a fan for life, and I will be sure to catch him live the next time he stops in New York for a show of his own.

Find more photos of Adams’ performance posted below.
Read the rest of this entry »

Monday Morning Matinee

midwest sunglasses