Outside Lands 2017 Preview / Top 20 Acts: ATCQ, Dr Octagon, Metallica, Gorillaz, Lorde, Thundercat, The Who, Action Bronson + more

Posted by Billyjam, August 11, 2017 11:53am | Post a Comment
Props to the folks behind Outside Lands, the cool diverse long running independent music festival that takes place in San Francisco’s Golden Gate Park every summer (which means weather might be sunny or foggy) and that this year marks its tenth successful year.

Outside Lands has become the largest independent music festival in the country. And for this year's 10th anniversary that begins today and ends Sunday (August 11 - 13), festival bookers have curated a refreshingly diverse bill that as well as all the big name acts includes up-and-coming bands, an Epic Rap Battle, breaks B-boy/DJ event,  DJs (inc. Josh Wink and Jazzy Jeff), stand-up and spoken word (inc. Nick Kroll and Henry Rollins) all the while covering many different popular musical genres.

Too many amazing acts to focus on them all in one  Amoeblog but take a look at the flyer left to see most of them listed. Note that, due to injury, that Queens of the Stone Age have cancelled their listed appearance this weekend. [EDIT UPDATE  Saturday announced that A Tribe Called Quest, who had already been postponed by one day, have been cancelled]  Also check out the Outside Lands website for more details and help in planning who to see and when. Generally speaking today is predominantly more beat driven acts while tomorrow/Saturday is more hard rock acts overall. Then Sunday offers more of a mish mash of genres.  Below I have put together a list of 20 of the acts (with videos and days/times of each act) that are worth catching. A subjective list from the perspective of a hip-hop fan foremost, it admittedly only scratches the surface and omits many great acts. But it gives an idea of the wealth of talent to expect this weekend at Outside Lands, as well as a rough guide to planning who to see on what stage over the 3 day festival weekend.

1: A Tribe Called Quest “We The People….” (2016) from the best damn album of last year, We Got It From Here... Thank You 4 Your Serviice (also on vinyl/LP), the last one from ATCQ and featuring on many tracks the late great Phife Dawg. Q-Tip and company have so much talent and such a flawless back-catalog to draw from, that this should be a most memorable set. Tribe perform on the Lands End stage from 6:15pm to 7:25pm this evening, Friday. EDIT -update due to flights delayed, A Tribe Called Quest postponed their set by one day, until Saturday eve at 7pm on the Twin Peaks stage. **Second UPDATE edit on Saturday: ATCQ cancelled!

2: Dr. Octagon “Blue Flowers” from the original and new 3LP, 20th Anniversary Edition version of Dr Octagon's Dr Octagonecologyst 3LP 20th Anniversary Set is this super-group featuring veteran NYC emcee Kool Keith's Dr. Octagon alter ego, project producer/mastermind Dan the Automator plus San Francisco turntablist legend DJ Qbert who recently regrouped to do select shows including today's.
Dr. Octagon perform on the Lands End stage from 2:05 to 2:55pm today, Friday. Note that Qbert will be back at the festival on Sunday afternoon from 1pm to 1:30pm as part of the "Breakdown Breakdance" event in the GastroMagic festival venue.

3: Gorillaz "Strobelite" (2017) from the album Humanz (also avail on LP/vinyl) from the novel, shapeshifting Damon Albarn created virtual band whose current project features Danny Brown, De La Soul, Vince Staples and more. The Gorillaz perform on the Lands End stage for a set just under two hours from 8:05 - 9:55pm tonight Friday.

4: The Who “Baba O’Reilly” Live in Hyde Park London (2015). Yes the same band who did a “farewell” tour stop in the Bay decades ago and famously sang “hope I die before I get old” ("My Generation") are still doing it on the concert front. And from the above recent UK concert clip of them doing one of their numerous rock classics they still deliver a commanding performance. And besides it is so important to go see these living legend artists while you still have the opportunity. The Who perform on the Lands End stage from 7:35 to 9:35pm on Sunday evening.

5: Metallica “Whiplash live at Lollapalooza March 2017 São Paulo Brazil” - Yes, they may not be the same band that they were back thirty plus years ago when they were virtually unknown and part of the Bay Area’s pioneering thriving thrash scene but their concert sets (two hours this weekend) still include music from that era as proven by this kick ass revisit of “Whiplash” (off 1983’s Kill Em All) from earlier this year.  Metallica perform on the Lands End stage from 7:55pm - 9:55pm tomorrow Saturday.

6: Lorde "Perfect Places" off the album Melodrama (2017) by the endlessly talented young New Zealand pop/rock artist. Lorde performs on the Lands End stage from 5:40 to 6:50pm on Sunday.

7: Thundercat “Tokyo” (2017) from the album Drunk. (also on LP/vinyl Box Set). Above is the latest video for track off Drunk by unique talent Thundercat who draws from music's rich past without sounding derivative. Another great video is his “Friend Zone” music video that’s got a lot of old VHS clips from TV shows mixed in. Hence no wonder he loves shopping at Amoeba as seen in the WIMB? episode he did four years ago (embedded immediately below). Thundercat performs on the Twin Peaks stage from 3:45pm to 4:35pm tomorrow Saturday.

7a: Thundercat What's In My Bag? #WIMB (2013) at his hometown Amoeba is pretty telling about his all embracing sound (and visuals) Thundercat performs on the Twin Peaks stage from 3:45pm to 4:35pm tomorrow Saturday.

8: Action Bronson “The Chairman's Intent” (2017) from forthcoming (and long overdue) next album Blue Chips 7000.scheduled to arrive into Amoeba on August 25th. From Queens New York is this connoisseur of hip-hop and food, both of which he excels in with unbridled passion. I've seen Action in concert before and he puts on an incredible show.  Action Bronson performs on the Sutro stage from 5:10pm to 6pm on Sunday.

9: Solange “Feelin' You, Pt. II (feat. N.O.R.E.)” (2016). Sister of you know who, which sometimes overshadows her identity and distinctive talents, Solange is busy this summer doing lots of festival dates including two this weekend: Afropunk Festival in Brooklyn (sold-out) and SF’s Outside Lands where she'll perform on the Sutro stage from 8:45pm to 9:35pm on Sunday.

10: Swet Shop Boys “Aaja (feat. Ali Sethi)” 2017 video from the 2016 album Cashmere. Further proof of hip-hop's global positive influence these guys manage to effortlessly meld many styles. Swet Shop Boys will perform on the Twin Peaks stage on Sunday from 12:40pm to 1:20pm.

11: Jacob Banks “Unholy War” (2017) The Boy Who Cried Freedom. Jacob Banks is one of those voices that stops you in your tracks when you first hear him making you think to yourself "how the hell did I not hear of this guy before now?" Well Sunday on the Sutro stage from 1:15 to 2pm is your chance to catch him live and up close.

12: Lee Fields & The Expressions “Special Night” (2017) from the Big Crown Records album Special Night (also on vinyl/LP).  If you don’t know Lee Fields already,  you should take time to do so as he delivers that sweet old school soul with real feeling. Retro but authentic. Lee Fields & The Expressions perform on the Lands End stage from 12:10 to 1pm on Sunday afternoon.

13: Kamaiyah “How Does It Feel” (2015) Hometown hero, well from across the Bay Bridge in the East Bay, is hardworking and hella talented Oakland rapper Kamaiyah, now signed to Interscope Records with her major label debut slated for later this year, and a rep for hail rain or shine always going on stage and killing it. Kamaiyah will perform on the Twin Peaks stage on Sunday from 2:00pm to 2:45pm.

14: Bomba Estéreo “Soy Yo” (2016) from album Amanecer. Straight outta Bogota Columbia Bomba Estéreo, whose sound is rooted in cumbia but incorporates various dance/party styles, can thank YouTube and the rest of the digital age for being able to reach audiences such as this weekend’s that traditionally would have been out of their reach.  Bomba Estére perform from 8:05 to 8:50pm on the Panhandle stage tomorrow, Saturday night.

15: Little Dragon “Strobe Light” (2017) from Season High.(also on LP/vinyl).  Directed by IB Kamara and Kristin-Lee Moolman and shot in South Africa “Strobe Light” is the latest video from the popular Swedish electronic/dance/pop band’s fifth/latest April 2017 released album that featured “High” as the first single.
Little Dragon perform on the Lands End stage from 4:45 - 5:45pm today Friday.

16: KAYTRANADA "Glowed Up (feat. Anderson .Paak)" (2016) from the album 99% (also on LP/vinyl) that was a year end favorite of such Amoeba staffers as Mona Lisa in the Hollywood store. The artist born Louis Kevin Celestin plays Saturday on the Twin Peaks stage from 5:20pm to 6:20pm

17: Prince vs. Michael Jackson dance off video to represent the exclusive Prince and Michael Jackson set been played by longtime SF DJ Dave Paul, who pioneered the original Prince Vs. MJ dance parties with his popular The Prince and Michael Experience events that he’s been traveling with to clubs all over the US for many years. Sure both Prince and MJ are gone from this world but this is a way to revive their legacies and dance to their amazing music. Dave Paul spins in The House by Heineken from 2:30-3:30pm today, Friday. 

18: ScHoolboy Q “Dope Dealer (feat. E-40)” (2016) from Blank Face LP (also on vinyl/LP) - the popular SoCal artist's album from last year. Explicit content warning! Although considered a new artist by many, ScHoolboy Q has been around for a decade grinding away at his craft.  ScHoolboy Q will perform on Sunday evening from 6:40pm to 7:40pm on the Twin Peaks stage.

19: Mondo Cozmo “Shine” (2017) from the album Plastic Soul that was released one week ago. LA based singer/songwriter/producer Mondo Cozmo's voice has been understandably compared to Dylan’s but what most distinguishes the artist is his raw passion and soul that he displays. Mondo Cozmo performs on the Panhandle stage from 1:25 to 2:05pm on Saturday.

20: Noname “Live Tiny Desk Concert” (2017) Chicago’s Noname is among the top female emcees of today. I saw her in concert in Denver earlier this year and was as impressed with her as much as I was with her killer funky band. Noname performs today/Friday afternoon from 4:30pm to 5:10pm on the Panhandle stage.

Outside Land 2017 promo video

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Gorillaz (7), Outside Lands 2017 Preview (1), Outside Lands (8), Atcq (7), Metallica (27), Qbert (22), The Who (13)