Outside Lands today released the single-day schedule for this year's festival, so those of you who want to go but don't want to spend three full days in Golden Gate Park can make plans. Single-day tickets go onsale tomorrow, June 26, at 10 a.m., for $105 (GA) or $229.50 (VIP). The release of the day's lineups always gives a preview of how the festival will flow, and which days will be best. Here are our quick takeaways on what to expect based on the schedule.
Friday's Paul McCartney vs. Pretty Lights standoff is an easy call.
We're a bit disappointed that Sir Paul will headline the first night, since we'd been hoping he'd close out the festival with a long Sunday evening set. But hey, the fact that he's stacked up against Pretty Lights makes for an easy choice, even if it does reprise the old vs. new conflict from last year. If you're dying for bass and glowsticks, head for Pretty Lights. Everyone else, stick around for Macca -- you won't regret it.
Saturday night's headliners are all too good.
Do you want to see Phoenix do what it does best -- close out a huge festival stage with effervescent dance-pop? Or do you want to see the return of industrial rock titans Nine Inch Nails, which is even more exciting in light of the band's surprisingly good new single, "Came Back Haunted"? We're not completely sure that will be the choice yet -- just wait until the set times come out -- but even still, the top of Saturday's lineup is all very strong: There are the aforementioned groups, plus Yeah Yeah Yeahs, the return of Jurassic 5, and Grizzly Bear. How can we see all of that, is the question.
Sunday is the lightest day of the festival.
With Red Hot Chili Peppers and Kaskade at the top of the lineup, we'd expect only EDM fans and rock-jocks left when the festival ends at 10 p.m. Sunday. The best attractions on Day 3 are farther down the bill: Kurt Vile, A-Trak, Hall & Oates, Fishbone, and (yes) Willie Nelson. King Tuff, MS MR, and Camper Van Beethoven should keep the afternoon interesting as well. So after the Chili Peppers play "Under the Bridge," expect to see a mass of people moving toward the exits.
Go early for the locals -- in fact, go early every day.
Don't think you can just skip out of work at the normal time on Friday and get your money's worth: The middle of the lineup is very solid, with indie bands like the Men, Smith Westerns, and and Wavves, and more dancey acts like the unmissable Jessie Ware, Rhye, and Chromatics. Getting there earlyish will be worth it every day, if only to support the locals: On Saturday, you'll want to catch Thao and the Get Down Stay Down, The Mother Hips, and the Soft White Sixties. Sunday's early names aren't quite as essential, but Bhi Bhiman, King Tuff, and Kopecky Family Band are worth checking out.
If you have to pick one day...
Easy: Call in sick to work and go on Friday. You'll be able to see one of the greatest living pop musicians, and on top of that, you'll have a chance to check out a ton of great younger (and older!) artists, whether you like rock, R&B, or dance music. Did we mention D'Angelo is playing that night?