The Best of Governors Ball Music Festival 2015
Governors Ball Music Festival has not only become New York's premier festival, but also one of the biggest and best in the country. Recruiting names of the biggest artists in each genre of music, their 2015 lineup was complemented by big name bookings that included Drake, The Black Keys, Lana Del Rey, Bjork... and don't forget "Weird Al" Yankovic. On the electronic music side, its presence ranged from early acts to headlining slots, featuring performances from Deadmau5, Ratatat, Flume, SBTRKT, Flying Lotus and Big Gigantic just to name a few. The festival has plenty to offer dance music fans, and is truly the festival for the most eclectic music fans.
The festival was kicked off in proper fashion on Friday (June 5), beginning with U.K. duo Gorgon City, who delivered a live set at the festival's Gotham Tent (which housed many of the weekend's dance acts). Not long after, Chromeo took the main stage, performing their unmistakable brand of electronic-funk sounds, like their common set opener "Night By Night" and crowd pleaser "Jealous." The duo took the entire festival for a loop, however, when they brought out Vampire Weekend frontman Ezra Koenig to perform "Caped Cod Kwassa Kwassa." They reverted back to Chromeo tracks immediately after, keeping Koenig out as a special guest for "Bonafide Lovin'."
Back at the Gotham Tent, ODESZA proved their popularity to be too much for the tent's confined space, packing out an enormous crowd that the Gotham Tent's low sound level at the time could not satisfy. This problem was soon corrected, however, as Ratatat delivered an appropriately loud and lazer filled set at the Gotham Tent. As expected, the duo treated their hometown crowd to both classic and unreleased tracks from their forthcoming LP Magnifique, set for release on July 17.
Saturday (June 6) of the festival brought with it some of electronic music's heavy hitters. Fans were forced to choose between Flume on the Big Apple Stage and SBTRKT at the Gotham Tent. If you chose the latter, you were able to catch Ezra Koenig yet again, marking his second special guest appearance at the festival to perform "NEW DORP. NEW YORK." Fans who chose the former, however, were treated to a set that fans are hailing as one of the best of the festival, complete with all of his best tracks, a guest appearance by Miike Snow vocalist Andrew Wyatt to perform their new collaboration "Some Minds," as well as brand new tracks from the Australian superstar producer, which you can watch below.
Closing out the main stage on Saturday was headliner Deadmau5. This set marked a monumental one for Joel Zimmerman (aka Deadmau5), as he was premiering a state-of-the-art, never-before-seen design encompassing future technology to compliment his future music compositions — the "Thunderdome" stage. However, not everything went according to plan. The sound from the set cut out numerous times, and resulted in a 15-minute lapse in the music as Deadmau5's crew fixed the issue (while Joel did push-ups to entertain the crowd). The problems were eventually fixed, but not before much of the crowd had left. Those who did stay, however, were treated to the kind of sets that have made him a commodity of the world's biggest festivals. You can see his impressive new stage setup in action below.
Sunday (June 7) brought another successful year of Governors Ball to a close. The day saw no shortage of electronic acts, beginning with Fool’s Gold Records head A-Trak.
A-Trak would also later put on an intimate set at the festival's Samsung VIP area, which all Samsung users were given access to. The lounge showcases some off the company's newest products, and provided a clear, elevated view of the festival's main stage.
The electronic-funk duo of Big Gigantic also brought the kind of set that have made them a staple of festivals throughout all of North America each summer. The duo showed off their live instrumentation with their signature drum and saxophone to accompany their feel-good funk sounds, which had a packed crowd at the Honda tent going wild.
What a weekend!! Thank you New York City for helping us close it out proper!! ❤️
Having celebrated its fifth year, the festival has taken the event to new heights each year since its inception in 2011. It is evident why it attracts fans from all over the country, and demands the attention of New York's biggest music fans and outlets alike. Watch for Governors Ball Music Festival to take things to the level in 2016. We know we'll be counting the days until then.