Five Hidden Gems on the Boston Calling Festival Lineup

This year’s Boston Calling Music Festival takes place between May 25 and May 27, at Harvard Athletic Complex in Massachusetts in the USA.

A festival with this many headliners – Eminem, The Killers, Jack White, Queens of the Stone Age, Paramore, and Tyler, The Creator – doesn’t really need to do much else to get you there. I will follow, and have followed, Queens of the Stone Age and Jack White anywhere, and this time is no different. I will travel to Boston from New York just to attend this festival to see them. But look further down the lineup announcement list to those acts that aren’t quite at a stadium-filling level just yet, and you’ll find many more who are worth seeing and supporting.

Here are five hidden gems playing the Boston Calling festival in May:

St. Vincent

St. Vincent is playing a range of festival dates over the Northern Hemisphere summer, including “All Points East” in London with Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds and Patti Smith. Her fifth album MASSEDUCTION, which was released in October 2017, has received high praise. Her live shows have attracted similar positive attention, with Consequence of Sound calling her “live act of the year” in a review of one of her shows from the “Fear the Future” tour in December 2017. Her set at Boston Calling should not be missed.

Maggie Rogers

Maggie Rogers has released two albums: The Echo, and Blood Ballet in 2012 and 2014 respectively, but her name may sound familiar because of her 2016 single ‘Alaska’. The song made it to number 64 in the triple j Hottest 100 in 2016. Rogers released an EP – Now That The Light Is Fading – in 2017, and her set at Boston Calling will be a delightful display of her blissful, emotional tunes.

Zola Jesus

Listening to Zola Jesus’ music does not give me a clear idea of what to expect at her Boston Calling set, but that makes me even more excited for it. Her latest album, 2017’s Okovi, is a mix of fast and slow electronica, with some industrial sounds thrown in for good measure. One thing remains constant – and this is across all four albums – Zola Jesus’ voice is strong and unwavering in every track. Seeing her perform live will add to its unique intensity.

Lillie Mae

Lillie Mae is a solo singer and violinist and released her latest album, Forever and Then Some, in 2017. Mae has worked with Jack White in the past, lending vocals and violin to the track ‘Temporary Ground’ from his album Lazaretto, and recorded her album at Third Man Records in Nashville. Fingers crossed we get to see Mae play twice – both in her own set and as a guest on stage with Jack White.

This Is The Kit

This is the Kit is a three-piece band from England, and have released four albums. Their most recent features the hauntingly lovely single ‘Bullet Proof’ and the denser, more upbeat title track ‘Moonshine Freeze’. Their music ranges between understated, with vocals, guitar, and banjo, to downright funky. It will be a pleasure to watch them in action.