Earlier this week, the much-anticipated artist lineup for the ninth edition of Lightning in a Bottle was released. After migrating southeast to Temecula last July, the famed boutique festival is on the move again — and this time, it’s taking over Lake San Antonio Recreation Area in Monterey County from May 22nd-26th.
With LIB heading north to central California this Memorial Day weekend, the festival is primed to hit the LA and SF markets better than ever before.
So, what can you expect at this year’s event?
You can be sure to see your share of hippie/Burning Man types, bass heads and the occasional ordinary-looking festivalgoer. And if you’re into art and yoga, there’s certainly plenty of that, too. After all, you won’t find another music festival in the country that honors both disciplines more than what The Do LaB does every year.
But LIB has also stepped up its game when it comes to its musical offerings, making significant strides over the past few years by booking bigger and better artists.
With this year’s lineup featuring a slew of high-profile acts, we look at 10 you won’t want to miss.
10. Gold Panda
Since signing with Ghostly International in 2010, Derwin Schlecker has covered almost every EDM sub-genre under the sun, whether it’s glitch, folktronica, microhouse, minimal techno, post-dubstep, wonky, ambient or chillwave. Over the last year, the UK producer has been hard at work, releasing his second LP Half of Where You Live as well as a six-track EP entitled Reprise.
Listen to “If U Knew (Reprise Long Live Take)”:
9. Chet Faker
Nicholas James Murphy, or better known as Chet Faker, first entered the mainstream with his cover of Blackstreet’s “No Diggity” in 2011, but the Aussie has been on a roll, winning “Breakthrough Artist of the Year” and “Best Independent Release” for his Thinking in Textures EP just a year later. Since then, he’s worked with a host of talented musicians, including fellow countryman Flume, Say Lou Lou and Kilo Kish.
Watch “No Diggity” music video:
Sure, “Harlem Shake” was so 2013, but that doesn’t mean the track won’t elicit an instant dance party when Baauer does drop it — and with this being the Brooklyn producer’s first appearance at LIB, you can bet that will happen. Matter of fact, the party banger did earn him honors for “Dance Song of the Year” and “EDM Song of the Year” at the 2013 Billboard Music Awards.
Listen to “Harlem Shake”:
7. Claude VonStroke
As owner of Dirtybird Records and Mothership Records, Barclay Crenshaw (aka Claude VonStroke) has climbed the EDM charts over the last decade and doesn’t appear to be slowing down. Wrapping up his Urban Animal tour this month, the San Francisco-based producer likes to dabble in more than just house beats, with samples ranging from drum and bass to funk and soul all part of Crenshaw’s repertoire.
Watch “Turbosteppa” music video:
6. The Polish Ambassador
It wasn’t long ago that The Polish Ambassador was packing the dance floor at LIB with his infectious funk and electropop grooves. After one of last year’s most-talked-about performances, David Sugalski will be bringing back “The Family” — the name his fans often go by — so you might want to go pick up a neon-colored jumpsuit at your local thrift shop soon.
Listen to “New Funk Millennium”:
Originally hailing from Slovenia, Denis Jasarevic returns to LIB after making his debut two years ago. While his music ranges from funk and jazz to soul and blues, the Pretty Lights Music artist has sold over 100,000 tracks on Beatport.com and has plenty of bangers in his hip pocket to keep a party going late into the night.
Watch Gramatik at 2012 Lightning in a Bottle:
With the release of its new full-length album Voices (read our review here) last month, the upstate New York duo is hotter than ever before, selling out venues all across the country on its recent U.S. tour. Between lead singer Sarah Barthel’s haunting vocals and guitarist Josh Carter’s polished production work, Phantogram remains one of LIB’s most coveted acts this year.
Listen to “Black Out Days”:
3. Beats Antique
There may be no artist better suited for LIB than Beats Antique. There’s no doubt the Oakland-based trio, which fuses neo-gypsy electronica, tribal fusion dance and psychedelic performance art into one mesmerizing show, feels at home every time it plays the festival — and this year should be no different for multi-instrumentalist David Satori, drummer Tommy “Sidecar” Cappel and belly dancer Zoe Jakes.
Beats Antique at 2011 Bonnaroo video:
2. Little Dragon
After climbing the Billboard charts with 2011’s Ritual Union, the Swedish trip-hop outfit is set to release its fourth full-length record Nabuma Rubberband this May. The album is said to be inspired by “Janet Jackson slow jams,” but if there’s one thing for sure, lead singer Yukimi Nagano certainly knows how to keep an audience on its toes.
Listen to “Klapp Klapp”:
1. Moby (DJ set)
Having spent more than 30 years in the music business, the LA-via-NYC transplant gradually has become somewhat of a cultural icon. With that in mind, it would be hard to argue that a bigger artist has ever graced the main stage at LIB. If his set is anything like it was at Coachella last year, you can expect to him to play plenty of house and maybe even snap some photos of the crowd before it’s all over.
Moby at 2013 Coachella video:
The next five acts to catch: Amon Tobin (DJ set), Simian Mobile Disco (DJ set), Lee Burridge, Break Science, Kraddy.