The lineup for FYF Fest 2016 was just announced and let us be the first ones to say…it’s better than Coachella. Yes, having Kendrick Lamar headlining Saturday night (his only West Coast festival date) definitely gives us enough reason to make this statement. But it’s also much more than that. The festival on August 27-28 returns once again to Exposition Park and will also be headlined by Aussie psych rockers Tame Impala on Saturday followed by an Indio warmup set from LCD Sound System and art pop high priestess Grace Jones(!). This year’s roster also includes performances from Anohni (formerly known as Antony Hegarty or Antony of Antony and the Johnsons), Beach House, Grimes, and more.
So why does FYF’s excitement factor appear to edge out the biggest festival on the West Coast? If we’re judging on lineups alone, Sean Carlson’s 12th annual FYF succeeds at feeling a lot less safe than Coachella. Nevermind the fact that it’s in Downtown L.A. instead of a grassy polo field. FYF is bringing us a show that gives us the best of what it’s big brother has to offer (plus or minus Guns N’ Roses, depending on who you talk to) and an extra dose of specialness added by acts that aren’t going to be all over the U.S. festival circuit this year, including Shellac, Steve Albini’s legendary post-hardcore band, who are coming out of hibernation (although most of their tour dates are in Europe, except for FYF). You’ve also got French pop duo Air’s first U.S. show in five years. Jones’ headlining set on Sunday is one of those performances that will definitely show the millennial audience how avant garde super stardom was done before the days of Lady Gaga, as educational as it will be artistically stunning. Nothing on the Coachella bill really competes for that prize.
It’s worth noting that despite its growing pains, FYF has steadily molded and solidified its identity as a taste making, SoCal festival of choice for locals, with an array of performers both up-and-coming and critically lauded and some (from Jones to Laguna’s own Ty Segall) that showcase artistry over everything in their performances. This is something that many feel has become Coachella’s weakness in recent years where nostalgia is a stand-in for creativity. Of course any festival is going to have acts that appeal to fans’ awkward teen years. We’re willing to bet every emo kid in the greater LA area is losing their shit over Saves the Day’s full album performance of Stay What You Are. But finding the appropriate balance of throwback, cutting edge, local culture and provocative performance is what makes a strong festival these days. Which festival are you most excited about this year? Take a look at the poster and full lineup for FYF below.
General Admission weekend passes will be available for $199 with single day tickets available for $125 and weekend VIP passes available for $339. For all ticketing info, FAQ, and news, please visit FYFFest.com.
FYF Fest 2016 Lineup (Alphabetical):
The Black Lips
The Black Madonna
Explosions in the Sky
Father John Misty
Head Wound City
Moby (DJ set)
Museum of Love
Oneohtrix Point Never
Peter Bjorn and John
Saves The Day (performing ‘Stay What You Are’)
Todd Terje & The Olsens
Ty Segall & The Muggers
Uncle Acid and the Deadbeats