For those destined for the grassy fields of Randall's Island, waiting for the Gov Ball schedule release felt akin to pulling teeth. Days dripped by without any mention of set times from the festival promoters, yet finally, with a hushed update of the official app, we can all feast our eyes. As with any fest with a stacked lineup, though, conflicts appear throughout. We cover the most grueling and offer tips to make it out alive.
Governor's Ball 2014 Schedule
Great lineups spur conflicts. It's unavoidable. So, as festival vets (and apparent sad sacks), we've resisted the urge to rejoice at the secret release of the Governor's Ball schedule, and chosen to offer a guide to the best way to navigate the pitfalls.
Be sure to check the full schedule below.
Bastille vs. Washed Out (Friday - 3:45 PM)
Respectively, this one's a bit of a minor conflict in the context of the fest, but it'll create a tough decision for the indie-leaning crowd. Bastille is making waves with sudden radio-friendly popularity, while Washed Out has slowly built an engrossing body of work complemented by a dedicated fanbase.
Rukkus Recommends: Washed Out. Avoid the three-beer-drunk teen crowd (unless you are one, in which case, this is awkward) and head over to the Gotham Tent for the euphoric and chill vibes of Washed Out's live show.
TV on the Radio vs. Grimes (Friday - 8:00 PM / 8:15 PM)
This is one of those sneaky conflicts; the promoters gave us that 15 minute window to make things a little less painful, but it will probably just trip you up into not making a decision. Here, you have two artists that aren't playing many shows at the moment.
On one hand, you have TV on the Radio playing a rare and nostalgic live show in the city that gave them life, and on the other, you have Grimes—the electronic star who's going to achieve world domination (again) when her new album comes out.
Rukkus Recommends: TV on the Radio in a painfully tough call. You could try to catch parts of each set (which we just might), but that comes at the risk of missing TVOTR's "Wolf Like Me," an absolute experience live... in NYC. Damn.
Outkast vs. Damon Albarn (Friday - 9:15 PM)
Outkast, the recently reunited legends, square up against another legendary artist that's conversely gone solo, Damon Albarn. The latter typically peppers Gorillaz and Blur songs in his sets, but can you really miss the juggernaut that is Outkast's reunion?
Rukkus Recommends: Outkast. Yes, they're playing everywhere (Bar Mitzvah's, sweet 16s, weddings), but this is going to be a sight that's just too difficult to pass up. Imagine 50,000 people singing "Hey Ya." If you do wander off to Damon Albarn's set, though, we just might join you.
Broken Bells vs. Disclosure (Saturday - 4:45 PM)
Do you see the biggest electronic crossover act of the past 5 years, or Broken Bells, the pensive project of Danger Mouse and James Mercer of The Shins. Perhaps it depends on how "turnt up" you'd like to get on a Saturday afternoon (which is likely "very") or whether you'd like to relax to the sound of Mercer's delicate vocals.
Rukkus Recommends: Disclosure—even if you've seen them before. There are sure to be guest appearances, considering collaborators AlunaGeorge are also playing the fest, and they usually keep Sam Smith in an equipment case and let him out to sing "Latch." The act will be just the thing to start Saturday night off right... and Broken Bells are kind of boring (sorry).
The Strokes vs. Childish Gambino (Saturday - 6:45 PM / 7:00 PM)
The Strokes haven't played a show together in about three years, while Childish Gambino (a.k.a Donald Glover) developed a loyal cult following in the same span. Though pairing rock vs. rap is standard protocol, this will prove a tough decision for those with varied taste.
Rukkus Recommends: The Strokes. No disrespect to the great Gambino, but arguably the biggest band to come out of NYC in the last 15 years can't be skipped. For those inclined to do so, you've got a 15 minute window to run from stage to stage.
Spoon vs. Sleigh Bells (Saturday - 8:15 PM)
Another "turn up" vs. relaxed decision. Sleigh Bells are known for a wild live show behind crazed front-woman Alexis Krauss (who is, coincidentally, beautiful), while Spoon doesn't play live often, yet possesses a catalog nothing short of classic.
Rukkus Recommends: Spoon. Sleigh Bells' studio catalog is lacking, despite the promise of a great live show. And come on, it's Spoon.
Jack White vs. Skrillex (Saturday - 9:30 PM)
Two headline worthy names go head-to-head. One, the rock champion of our generation, the other, the reformed brostep purveyor known for insane live performances. It's the classic analog vs. digital debate that began when the electric guitar gave way to the synthesizer. So... which one do you go with?
Rukkus Recommends: Jack White. The guy should use this massive stage to absolutely shred, and it's going to be an incredible experience to watch. However, Skrillex piqued our curiosity, and it wouldn't be surprising if many sneaked away to catch the tail-end of his set.
Tyler, the Creator vs. AlunaGeorge (Sunday - 3:45 PM)
The rapper and skater punk fusion of Tyler, the Creator proves an acquired taste (just ask Buzzfeed). His live show is always full of surprises, however, and he's probably (definitely) going to bring out Earl Sweatshirt or vice versa. At the same time, AlunaGeorge creates some of the most catchy R&B induced electronica available at the fest. Decisions, decisions.
Rukkus Recommends: AlunaGeorge. We like Tyler, but we'd be lying if we chose him solely for his music. AlunaGeorge's set is going to be downright fun.
Foster The People vs. James Blake (Sunday - 6:45 PM)
Foster moved away from the roaring success of "Pumped Up Kicks" on their latest LP, and for a band once destined for the one-hit-wonder stack, they actually perform an exciting live show with tons of instruments and people on stage. James Blake is the opposite—a minimal and chilling songwriter whose music begets intimacy.
Rukkus Recommends: James Blake. The source material is much stronger, here, and take our word for it, his live shows are remarkable. End of story.
Vampire Weekend vs. Axwell & Ingrosso (Sunday - 9:15 PM / 9:30 PM)
The final conflict and the most clear-cut. The camps that choose one over the other will be hilariously different—the "indies" vs. the "EDMs." Vampire Weekend is the archetypal festival band coming off their most dynamic record yet, and Axwell & Ingrosso are two-thirds of Swedish House Mafia, the arena sized spectacle that brought EDM to the masses.
Rukkus Recommends: Vampire Weekend. Not to say the other option woudln't be worth experiencing at least once, but Modern Vampires of the City is a masterpiece. Axwell & Ingrosso are candy.
Make your own choices with the set times below!
Friday, June 6th
12:15 PM - HAERTS / Little Comets / The Chain Gain of 1974
12:45 PM - Drowners / Little Daylight
1:30 PM - Jason Isbell / Run The Jewels
2:15 PM - Kurt Vile and the Violators / Ratking
3:00 PM - Janelle Monae / The 1975
3:45 PM - Bastille / Washed Out
4:45 PM - Julian Casablancas + The Voidz / Jenny Lewis
5:45 PM - Neko Case / La Roux
6:45 PM - Damian "Jr Gong" Marley
6:50 PM - Phoenix
8:00 PM - TV on the Radio
8:15 PM - Grimes
9:15 PM - Outkast / Damon Albarn
Saturday, June 7th
12:15 PM - Hunter Hunted / Catfish and the Bottlemen
12:45 PM - Diarrhea Planet / The Internet
1:30 PM - PAPA / RJD2
2:15 PM - Tanlines / Deafheaven
3:00 PM - Lucius / Classixx
3:45 PM - Fitz and the Tantrums / Chance The Rapper
4:45 PM - Broken Bells / Disclosure
5:45 PM - The Naked & Famous / The Glitch Mob
6:45 PM - The Strokes
7:00 PM - Childish Gambino
8:15 PM - Spoon / Sleigh Bells
9:30 - Jack White / Skrillex
Sunday, June 8th
12:15 PM - Meg Myers / Cris Cab / Ben Cameron
12:45 PM - Half Moon Run / Cayucas
1:30 PM - Bleachers / SKATERS
2:15 PM - Wild Belle / BANKS
3:00 PM - Frank Turner / Earl Sweatshirt
3:45 PM - Tyler, the Creator / AlunaGeorge
4:45 PM - The Head and the Heart / J. Cole
5:45 PM - The Kills / The Bloody Beetroots (live)
6:45 PM - Foster The People / James Blake
8:00 PM - Interpol
8:15 PM - Empire of the Sun
9:15 PM - Vampire Weekend
9:30 PM - Axwell & Ingrosso
Article by Nicolas White