April showers might lead to May flowers for most people, but for festival goers it is more like finally showering after Coachella leads to May swiftly creeping up and making you realize just how quickly Lightning in a Bottle is approaching. The DoLaB’s flagship event is returning once again to Bradley, CA from May 25-30 for an extended celebration of music, nature, art, and community, and we are already marking down the days till we depart from the real world and step into LIB territory.
With numerous stages and renowned musicians flocking in from around the world, it's nearly impossible to catch every artist you want to see. To make things a little easier, the Magnetic team heading to LIB has put together a list of 10 picks that you would be foolish to miss.
While dance music clearly reigns supreme at Lightning, there is no shortage of R&B, pop, hip-hop, and live performances going down this year that will make your musical adventure one to remember. Tickets sold out for the first time last year and are on pace to do the same this year, so act fast if you want to experience the magic of LIB.
The French Afro-Cuban twin sister duo Ibeyi has been flooring audiences with their soulful vocals and powerful compositions. They've been touring the world on the strength of their 2015 self-titled debut record, and are surely a can't-miss at this year's LiB.
The high esteem that Lee Burridge holds within the industry has been hard-wrought, and well-deserved. He started DJing in England during the mid-80s, helping launch Hong Kong's underground scene in the early 90s before forming DJ supergroup Tyrant with pals Sasha and Craig Richards. Lately, he's been don of the recent All Day I Dream parties that have been stoking up the globe.This year's Woogie stage may be stacked with talent, but we predict Burridge will be the man of the hour.
The rampageous duo of Marty Folb (MartyParty) and Josh Mayer (Ooah from The Glitch Mob) hasn't toured since 2013, and their return to the booth together has been long-awaited. PANTyRAiD recently put out a new cross-genre album, After Glow, and they're on a US tour supporting its release. Also at LiB, Ooah is performing a second set as Crying over Porcelain with Glitch Mob comrade and former Low End Theory resident edIT.
William Phelps must surely be raking in checks for his co-writing contributions to Sam Smith's "Stay With Me," but that hasn't steered him away from his solo output. The Grammy winner, who performs electronic music as Tourist and rolls alongside Disclosure's crew, is launching his debut album U on May 6, and it's a doozy. I'm expecting that it might be a sleeper hit of 2016.
As a DJ, Francesca Lombardo is a tasteful selector. As a producer and recording artist, she's responsible for some of Crosstown Rebels' most potent secret weapons. Expect her to heat up the dance floor at Lighting in a Bottle this year. If you miss her set, you will definitely regret it.
The young indie R&B singer from Atlanta fully commits himself with each performance. Raury is known for taking the audience track by track, telling stories of his life, some with inspirational and uplifting messages while others veer into a darker direction, touching on the harsh realities and impact of the trap lifestyle. Raury had a spot on the coveted 30 Days in LA lineup from Red Bull Sound Select last November and played his heart out to a small but packed club in LA. I cannot wait to see him take on a larger stage.
There’s nothing I want more in this world than to immerse myself in Chet Faker’s sultry voice at Lightning in a Bottle, simultaneously surrounded by a vibrant audience in the dim night of the desert. His voice floated over this same landscape as a backing track during Flume’s magical performance in 2015, but this year it will be Chet in the flesh. In addition to his performance at the Lighting Stage, he will also be doing a special “intimate music encounter” at the Temple of Consciousness. I would advise not missing either.
Mija continues to stay at the top of my must see list whenever she is on the bill, even though I’ve already had the chance to see her perform numerous times both at big festivals and to crowds of no more than 200 people at intimate events in LA. The Skrillex backed OWSLA star has been having a massive year with shows across the world, and in a few short weeks will be making her Lightning debut. Her set at The DoLab stage during Coachella 2015 was an unforgettable experience, so it’s no surprise that LIB decided to give Mija a shot at the big time.
Dirtybird's very own Justin Jay has become a crowd favorite at festivals across the world. While his strictly DJ sets are already filled with rapturous and dance-inducing soundscapes, it has become increasingly common for the recent USC graduate to bring out guitarists to spice up his already enthralling performances. We wouldn’t be surprised if he brought a serving of both at Lightning this year, but the one thing we can guarantee is this: Justin will have a massive smile on his face from start to finish and will be having a good ass time. Read our recent interview with Justin where we discuss his diverse musical output.
I am admittedly new to the Grimes boat, but I cannot imagine a place more perfect than LiB to jump fully on board. Her ethereal vocals are backed by blissful pop melodies and anime inspired instrumentations, creating a vivid spectacle on stage and most often igniting a solo performance that includes singing, keys, and setting her own loops. Beyond just music, Grimes often brings dancers on stage to create an audiovisual experience that's impossible to look away from once locked in. In a setting like LiB, where art and music combine, Grimes was an obvious choice for a headliner and is not one to miss.
Lightning in A Bottle takes place at the San Antonio Recreation Area in Bradley, CA from May 25-30. Tickets and more info here.
Featured photo by the insanely talented Juliana Bernstein, follow her travels @GetTiny