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Inside Outside Lands: Friday’s best shows


It’s the eve of Outside Lands’ 10th year, and we have another packed weekend of music ahead of us. But with over 100 different bands performing over the three-day festival, it can be difficult to pick which shows to go see. Because really, who has the time to listen to all that music and pick the best shows of the weekend?

We do.

Our DJs took the time to comb through the Outside Lands schedule and pick out the best shows on all three days so you don’t have to. Check em out:

No Name’s pick:

  • Rag’n’Bone Man
  • Sutro, 3-3:50 pm

It doesn’t happen often, but when it does, you never forget it: hearing a song for the first time that makes you go “woah.” A song that some how connects to your individual DNA. It’s what I love about listening to new music, and it’s how I felt the first time I heard Rag’n’Bone Man. 

Rory Graham got his start in music as a hip hop MC at the age of 15 and over the next decade and a half developed and found his true voice. It’s exciting to see an artist break out to a more mainstream fan base. He used to record his songs sitting on the toilet in his bathroom and just a few years later is playing Outside Lands. 

This will be Rag’n’Bone Man’s first Bay Area appearance, and I am looking forward to seeing if he brings the truth to the stage. 

Arthur’s pick:

  • Little Dragon
  • Land’s End, 4:45-5:45 pm

Little Dragon is a synth-driven indie rock quartet out of Sweden that has grown to international acclaim after years of relentless touring. I first heard of them on the Gorillaz track “Empire of Ants” off of Plastic Beach.

I loved the song, but I honestly kind of forgot about them until they appeared on Kaytranada’s (also performing at Outside Lands) bouncy electro track “Bullets” that came out last year. After that I was hooked and had to consume all the music of theirs that I could get my hands on, spending countless hours watching YouTube videos of their live performances.

It goes without saying, I am SUPER excited to get a chance to actually see them live. I am particularly in love with the new single “High” off of their latest album High Season. I highly suggest finding time in your Outside Lands schedule to check them out on the Land’s End stage Friday at 4:45.

Rockwell’s pick:

  • Future Islands
  • Twin Peaks, 6:50-7:50 pm
Friday night, if you’re looking to cut loose and get into festival mode – Future Islands brings the party. Like a lot of people, I became aware of these guys when they played on Letterman. The band playing the cool retro groove and the singer, quite intense, dressed all in black, really getting into it, dancing like a goof: THAT was Future Islands.
Kinda in your face, kinda laid back, heartbreaking, honest lyrics, and always danceable. I put their music on to power me through workouts and housework. (That was meant to be a compliment.) Look for the guy in the crowd dancing like a goof, that’ll be me.
Rosalie’s pick:
  • Fleet Foxes
  • Sutro, 7:10-8:20 pm

On Friday, it’s a band I want to see again because they sound totally different than when I saw them before: Fleet Foxes. I caught them at a mesmerizing show at The Greek right when Helplessness Blues came out. It was a swirling misty haze of color and fog. Perfect sound for Acoustic Sunrise.

Then they went on a 6-YEAR hiatus and I grumbled the whole time, while the lead guy got his degree at Columbia, and the drummer went off and became Father John Misty. Can’t wait to see their comeback.

Alicia’s pick:

  • Gorillaz
  • Land’s End, 8:05-9:55 pm
Gorillaz could literally sit there and jam for 60 seconds and I would be floored.  I’ve always loved their sound and look; plus the dozens of people on stage with them.  I haven’t seen them in a good eight years at this point; and really can’t wait to see them again. Unlike most bands, they put on a real show and a visual experience that makes you love them!
They’ll be at the Lands End stage from 8:05 pm to 9:55 pm on Friday night. I definitely recommend going early and catching A Tribe Called Quest right before them at 6:15 pm. Plus, you’ll get much better views of the show!

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