For the fourth year, Governors Ball brought together the hottest music artists on the scene to New York City. Unlike last year's hurricane induced rain disaster, the sun shined brightest for weekend festivities on Randall's Island from June 6-June 8. At times, the blazing heat was too hot for comfort, but there were plenty of drinks on sight to keep attendees hydrated.

Street art was scattered throughout the grounds along with lines of colorful balloons and other decorative attractions. Festival fashion was at its most prime with girls decked out in every floral print known to man-- imagine sunflowers and floral crowns as far as the eye could see-- and guys sporting trendy bucket hats that matched their basic sneakers and tank tops. (Shoutouts to the girl wearing the butterfly crown, she was rockin' it.) All weekend long, the island smelled like teen spirit, weed and sunscreen. There was a topless woman roaming around and a shirtless man in jhorts twirling tie-dye flags. It was an experience for all as some individuals embarked on this journey alone while others ventured with their entire families.

The main problem with Gov Ball (and any other music festival) falls under the set scheduling. So instead of reviewing every artist individually, I'd like to recap by taking you, the reader, into my mindset. I will reveal the good, the bad, and every conflict in-between. If you weren't there, here's what you missed, and if you were there, re-live all those imperative Snapchats that you sent out.


Day 1: June 6

I arrived to the island late in the evening so the only acts I managed to catch were La Roux, Phoenix, Grimes and OutKast. The most disappointing aspect of my entire weekend was missing The 1975, Ratking and Run The Jewels, but sacrifices had to be made.

Phoenix always puts on a fantastic live show, I don't need to tell you that. Like anyone else, I thoroughly enjoyed skipping around the grass during 'Listomania' and '1901'. While waiting in the bathroom line-- something I'm not proud of participating in more than once-- I overheard a girl make a horrible comparison of Phoenix to Sugar Ray, and that's when I knew that I was surrounded by lost souls.

Hands down, Grimes owned the night. As always, her hype girls were present on stage, but for this gig she also included four male mimes that broke it down. Grimes performed all of her hottest hits like 'Oblivion', 'Be A Body', 'Circumambient', and 'Phone Sex', but the most mind blowing moment came when she debuted the highly anticipated 'Go', a song that she originally wrote for Rihanna. (According to her, it was turned down. I don't know what RiRi was thinking, she would have killed that track.) One has to make the most of every second shared in the presence of Grimes so when she returned for an encore because she realized that she forgot to perform 'Genesis', everyone sprinted back to the Gotham Tent, unphased and unbothered by her mistake. "Thank you all for being here, dancing is for real," she enthused in her adorable squeaky voice. Overall, Grimes' set was flawless and there was literally nothing to complain about.

OutKast's comeback was epic for everyone involved. Old fans and new fans collectively rejoiced in this moment, and it was probably the highlight of some people's entire weekends. Oddly enough, OutKast got 'Ms. Jackson' and 'So Fresh, So Clean' out of the way in the beginning. I was having flashbacks to my middle school dances as I swayed to the rhythm alongside all of my new festival friends. Janelle Monáe was invited to sing with the group for 'Hey Ya!' and everyone freaked the f*** out. As I left the island, I could hear 'Roses' blasting in the distance. It was a beautiful night.


Day 2: June 7

Sad Girl Saturday was so real at Gov Ball. I don't know why, but everyone looked miserable as they walked from one stage to the other three. Maybe they were beat from the heat? Diarrhea Planet had the right idea to pump up the volume though, especially when they ended their punk-tastic set with a hardcore cover of OutKast's 'Hey Ya!' that had everyone sweating from moshing way too hard. With four guitarists on stage, they had to go out with a bang. Afterwards, RJD2 simmered things down with his interactive DJ set where he randomly sampled vinyl soundtracks. He was a ray of sunshine on an already hot day, but his engagement made the set worth standing around for.

From the outskirts of the Gotham Tent, a confident Chance The Rapper stood above his pre-teen cult fans. As he delivered tracks off his mixtapes 10 Day and Acid Rap, fans held their hands up high, saluting him with balloons, posters and joints in the air. As always, his band did the most, enhancing his live performance even more so he could jump around and shout excitedly in everyone's faces.

Disclosure put on one of the best sets of the day, but the timing of their performance seemed slightly out of place. (If I had it my way, I would have scheduled them later on to get the club effect going and prep people for Skrillex.) Aluna Francis made a predictable appearance for 'White Noise', but the crowd didn't seem to understand that she was there because she's actually the feature vocalist on the track. During 'Latch', couples got steamy as they engaged in full on make-out sessions. Somewhere out there, somebody got pregnant this weekend.

The Strokes and Childish Gambino overlapped, making seeing both acts do-able. Everyone will say that The Strokes slayed, and I can confirm that this is true. The Strokes never disappoint, need I say more? Childish Gambino attracted an amusing audience that I'd like to describe as "too young and too turnt". During and after his set, he threw all the shade, taking digs at to The Strokes, the audience and his record label. Gambino brought out Chance The Rapper for his verse on 'The Worst Guys' and the crowd went completely bonkers. (Not gonna lie, they gave me a hot flash.)

The big decision came between Sleigh Bells and Spoon, two completely different vibes. Sleigh Bells is more upbeat and energetic, but Spoon hasn't toured in a while so this opportunity might not happen again, right? I decided to stay for Sleigh Bells until I heard 'Comeback Kid', and then made my way over to Spoon, who immediately broke into 'The Way We Get By'. (Shoutouts to The O.C. for introducing me to all of this quality stuff when I was in high school.) The demographics divided for this match-up as an older crowd huddled together and sang in unison for 'Underdog' and 'Turn My Camera On', while the younger generation raged on with Sleigh Bells and their noise pop antics. Spoon also premiered a brand new song called 'Rent I Pay'.

As far as Skrillex and Jack White were concerned, I was completely indifferent. I'm not really a fan of either of them and by the end of the day, I was exhausted so I dipped out early. Onward.


Day 3: June 8

My Sunday kicked off with a bit of Bleachers and then the beautiful Banks had everyone captivated the second her darkly dressed figure emerged in the Gotham Tent. After her, Earl Sweatshirtperformed on the Honda stage, followed by Tyler, the Creator. Unfortunately, Tyler and AlunaGeorge were playing at the same time. Again, two different genres, two different demographics, two different dilemmas. For me, the choice was clear: AlunaGeorge. I wanted to dance, and I sure as hell wasn't going to give up my prime spot in the middle of the crowd to deal with a bunch of rowdy teenagers pushing me around for an hour. The duo performed a few songs that were blatantly new because they were more rock steady with heavy guitar riffs and explosive beats. I'd like to mention that George Reid recently shaved his head so he was almost unrecognizable behind the keyboard.

I wasn't too familiar with The Head and The Heart, but they impressed me enough to keep me situated on the hill as I watched their set with a delicious red velvet ice cream cookie sandwich in hand. (I went back for seconds, it was that good.) The beauty of festivals is that you can aimlessly roam the grounds, lay down and listen to the music without a care in the world. That is, until the moment comes when you have to choose between James Blake and Foster The People.

For most, this was the hardest choice by far. Here are two amazing performers that both deserve the same amount of attention. (Though many critics will strongly disagree.) I had seen both perform twice prior to the event, so I wasn't worried about missing anything. Since 2011, I have been there for both of them and watched them evolve into the highly praised artists that they are today. Both had questionable sophomore albums, though I will insist that Overgrown takes some time to grow on you. Fifteen minutes before their sets began, my heart was beyond torn so I did what any parent would do that doesn't want to pick their favourite child: I went to both. I started at James Blake, melting as he broke out 'I Never Learnt To Share'. But to my dismay, I was surrounded by total bros and unlike Blake's usual chillaxed audience, this one was completely motionless. Sure, there was some swaying here and there like palm trees on the beach, but for the most part, everyone around me was almost too chill to function. When he started playing the chords for 'Life Round Here', the guys behind me started yapping about "how sick it would when Chance came out". I knew he wasn't going to, but kept that tidbit to myself, rolling my eyes as I recalled why more people were into him now.

The entire time, I felt like I was in the middle of a cross-faded zombie invasion and everyone was killing my vibe so I made the painful decision to depart for Foster The People. I stand by this choice, and am pleased that I arrived just in time to hear all of my favorite tracks off Torches, including 'Houdini', 'Call It What You Want', 'Helena Beat' and an acoustic version of 'Pumped Up Kicks'. According to my friends, 'Retrogade' was well received by the crowd. From the bottom of my broken heart, please accept my sincerest apologies, James Blake.

Vampire Weekend closed the weekend on a high note, sprinkling in an old unreleased track 'Boston (Ladies of Cambridge)' between songs from all of their full-length albums. Frontman Ezra Koenig was enough to keep all the ladies attentive as he serendaded them with a mouthful of tongue twisting words while the rest of the band held their own with perfect precision.

And there you have it, a firsthand recap of what really went down at Gov Ball this weekend from the perspective of a common festival go-er. For some, it was the ideal weekend getaway. For others, it was another day on the job. For me, it was a short escape from reality where I was immersed in good music, good food, and good vibes.

If I had to do it all over again, I would have spent more time spending my money on the ice cream sandwiches and less time worrying about my handwritten daily schedule. I was stressed, but blessed in the best way possible. All in all, Governors Ball 2014 was a huge success and I look forward to returning to the island again next year.