Gov Ball 2016 was one of the more unique music festivals in Gov Ball’s short history. The Sunday show was controversially cancelled due to weather, although many attendees would say that the weather on Saturday was even worse. However, the quality of the artists was absolutely amazing, with plenty of artists playing fantastic sets. Here’s a recap of some of the best artists that may have gone under the radar.
Father John Misty
Father John Misty put on one of the most energizing sets at Gov Ball this year. His performance could best be described of one of a man possessed, almost demonic. He wasn’t doing any death growls or anything, but the artist spent a fair portion of his performance collapsed on stage, putting as much effort as humanly possible into every last word he sang. His backing band was excellent, and his cold, self deprecating personality definitely came through in between songs. All in all, a nearly perfect set, playing most of his biggest songs off of his most recent album, I Love You, Honeybear.
Like his stellar first full length album, Jamie XX had a set rooted in memory and the way that music impacts your emotions and fondest memories. Jamie XX’s DJing talents were unbelievable, to say the least. He only played six songs, but the way he was effortlessly able to keep the crowd dancing and his set airtight was excellent. His set was as no-nonsense as an electronic set can get; he never stood up on his decks, and there was no microphone for him to yell into to get people to clap their hands. It was an hour and fifteen minutes of captivating, melodic, beautiful house music. But what he did best was incorporate his soul into what he was playing. The classic 1981 hit, “Don’t You Want Me,” by The Human League, was effortlessly thread into his set. “One Dance,” by Drake, was sampled. And he closed with his hit track “I Know There’s Gonna Be (Good Times).” You could sense that as a musician he was simply expressing his emotion; the joy he has was felt out in the crowd, through song.
Like his album, which was released in 2010 but only got attention in 2012, Miguel’s performance was slept on by many at first. I unfortunately was not at Gov Ball on Saturday, so I asked MHS Students to give their favorite non-headlining set. Every single person that saw Miguel on Saturday stated that he was their favorite. He played in the pouring rain, yet also stayed professional and played an energetic and soulful set. When the rain went from bad to downpour, Miguel jumped off the shelter of the stage to be in the rain with his fans. All in all, Miguel had an under the radar performance that he completely rocked.
Governor’s Ball has quickly become a staple of the NYC music scene and has recently been acknowledged as one of the best festivals in the U.S. Although it was cut short, the quality of the artists at Gov Ball ’16 undoubtedly preserved the festival’s reputation.
By Sebastian De Lasa