Governors Ball 2013: Lots of mud, tons of great music
If there’s one thing everyone who attended Governors Ball 2013 keeps talking about is the mud. Yes, it was unpleasant. Yes, it was disgusting and I probably ruined my motorcycle boots, but at the end of the day it was a music festival and we were there for the bands. (For those of you that wore white Keds – and there were far too many of you – our question is, why?)
On the last day of the festival, the sun was shining bright and the pretty young things were out on Randall’s Island. Seriously though, everyone there seemed to be 20 years old, with tiny, cropped jean shorts and a flower wreath in their hair. Everyone looked like they belonged in a Free People ad. Anyway, the mud situation had significantly improved from the day before and the lineup is what music lovers’ dreams are made of.
Unlike previous years Gov Ball 2013 had four stages with overlapping sets. This forced us to choose between bands. Some of the overlapping shows on Sunday were unfair. How can one possibly choose between HAIM and The Vaccines or between Beirut and Yeasayer? Getting from one stage to the next was also a struggle. Due to the deep mud, walking across Randall’s Island took a lot longer than normally would.
Carefully analyzing the schedule it soon became clear that most of the shows this reporter wanted to see were at the main Gov Ball Stage and the SKYY Vodka Tent.
Sunday was full of ups and downs (and we’re not talking about the times we almost fell in the mud). Bands I expected to blow my mind, were average – this probably has a lot to do with the problematic sound at the You’re Doing Great and Honda stages. It was difficult to stick through the Beirut concert, even though they are normally fantastic live.
Highlights of the day include British rockers Foals who played on the main Gov Ball stage. Despite younglings starting a mosh pit during the show, Bloc Party also put on one of the better shows of the day.
By 9 p.m. the crowd rushed the Gov Ball Stage in anticipation of the one and only Kanye West. Yeezus took the stage fashionably late and performed classics such as “Power,” which was quite, well, powerful, and the crowd-favorite “Heartless.” ‘Ye also teased more of his new album, which is set to drop on June 18. He played several new tracks including “Black Skinhead.”
True to his routine, Kanye also took a moment to address the crowd in one of his “rants.”
Kanye told the crowd he doesn’t care for fancy promotion of his new album and that “we just made some real music.
“When I listen to radio, that ain’t where I wanna be no more. Ad honestly, at this point I can give a f*** about selling a million records, as long as I put out an album y’all can rock to all summer.”
Given last night’s performance, it seems like we’ll be doing just that.
Follow Mary Ann Georgantopoulos on Twitter @marygeorgant