10 Acts Not to Miss at Coachella’s Do LaB Stage in 2022
For weeks Do LaB enthusiasts and Coachella connoisseurs waited patiently for this year’s roster to drop. Fans asked themselves “who will return to the desert for a shot on the aesthetic Do LaB stage and who will get their first chance to play on the sustainable stage?”
On March 28, Do LaB released their lineup for Coachella 2022. I’ve compiled a list of ten artists to check out this year. You’ll find a mix of seasoned talent and newer acts because the Do Lab stage has something for every kind of music lover and festival-goer.
Named after the Hebrew word for God, Elohim sets out to bend genres. She flits between electropop, synth pop and house music, and each song is strikingly different from the last, but revolves around similar themes. Elohim disclosed that she’s struggled with anxiety for most of her life. Not long ago she disguised herself with a mask and used a voice recorder for interviews, alluding that she only wanted fans to recognize her by her music and keep her identity a mystery. Since then, Elohim has unveiled herself, continuing to conquer the debilitating feelings of anxiety through riveting beats and repetitive dance grooves. Her songs have the ability to soothe, captivate and hypnotize listeners.
Originally from Cleveland, HoneyLuv made her way to Los Angeles and is an important facet of the EDM community today. She travels the world playing festivals and shows, and although her career is fairly new (her first festival set was Desert Hearts in 2020) her talent matches those who have been in the game for decades.
HoneyLuv’s immense knowledge of music translates well to her discography. She can go from “Your Tongue”, a sex-positive dance anthem with techno beats to “Perfect-Energy”, an entrancing and transportive tune. The lyrics repeat “I love your energy, this perfect energy.” To me, the song gives off a jungle feel. Loops of bird calls and insect trills dissolve into the background behind the looped percussive line. If you close your eyes while listening, it won’t be long until you are dancing in the jungle with HoneyLuv.
This duo from the UK made up of Jonathan Fogel and Gove Kidao focuses on balance. For the song “When I Go” the group stresses the lower octaves of bass music by creating a tune of trance and chill rhythms. For the song “Cake” the trance elements are still there, reverb beats echo through the song, but unlike “When I Go” the premise of “Cake” is not to lay back and relax, but to go out into the world-conquering it. I would argue that this theme is prevalent in most upbeat electronic music sets. Ivy Lab songs don’t have as many lyrics as other artists, but the ones they do use, stick out.
From Nebraska, Mary Droppinz fell in love with music as a girl. Her dad followed a steadfast drum routine, each day after work he’d retreat to the basement to play emo hits and she would listen to him, picking up on the heart and drive emblematic of most genres of music. Years later, she lives in Los Angeles and chases the emotive side of the house scene. Droppinz is a part of LP Giobbi’s Femme House initiative— a 2022 project utilizing talented women and non-binary people in the music scene to share their art, skills, and work with their audience. Her song “Gonna Be Alright” utilizes enchanting breakbeats and syncopated bass drum kicks to push the head-banging tune. The lyrics sing “and it’s gonna be alright”, a sure sign that hearing this live will transport you to your happy place, the exact way Mary Droppinz feels while performing. I can surely say this track (and all her others) will go off live.
17-year-old Moore Kismet is making a name for themself. The non-binary musician entered the music scene when they were 13. Their 2020 EP “Revenge of the Unicorns” offers a dive into self-expression and identity (as Moore identifies as non-binary and pansexual) with driving 808 beats and unique synth sounds. Moore’s newest release “Parallel Heartbreaks” came out on Jan. 7, 2022. It shows a softer side of Kismet’s music, with somber electro pop beats and yearning lyrics “I don’t wanna end up broken-hearted” Kismet lets the lyricist — Pauline Herr — shine during the first half of the song, but as soon as the bridge hits, Kismet’s shows off their full range of talent, distorting the signer’s voice, pulling back the vocals and focusing on the buildup and the beat drop. Kismet is definitely someone to check out, as their career is blossoming rapidly.
Nitti Gritti (Ricky Mears) and Party Favor (Dylan Ragland) collaborate for this upbeat, fun and dancey duo. Rhythmic breakbeats and tight-knit synthesizers back the repetitive drum lines to entertain listeners before the inevitable beat drops. This duo puts out dance music into the scene, but also keeps the comedy up. Their bio on Insomniac reads, “Just two below average guys who got together to make music we love, but don’t tell our significant others. Everybody needs a SIDEPIECE.” ‘Sextacy” implores listeners to move to the confident and enthralling “sex with me is ecstasy” number.
The 35-year-old artist made his name as a rising star in the emerging UK dubstep scene. Since his debut album in 2006, Skream has evolved his sound and kept the releases steady. He implements deeper sounding elements in his music as a calmer introduction to the EDM scene. In recent years, his sets include a mix of disco, techno, trance, and experimental electronic music. Skream’s use of trills, deep pounding bass lines, and lower toned melodies remind listeners that he was fundamental to some findings of dubstep, plus, he can adapt to the ever-changing music scene.
The Glitch Mob
The Los Angeles trio of edIT, Boreta, and Ooah captivates audiences worldwide with their singular sounds of hypnotizing synth sounds, drum-heavy beats, and incredible beat drops. From their asides about wanting to spread peace and love to throwing their heads as close to the mixing board as humanly possible, the energy felt at a Glitch Mob set can’t be beaten. Aside from their stellar musical sets, the pyrotechnics for The Glitch Mob shows are unlike any other live set I’ve seen. Strobe lights shine through the audience and fire blasts into the air at the highest anticipated moments, leaving the crowd with no choice but to go insane. The Glitch Mob is no stranger to the Do LaB stage. In fact, they played a surprise set in 2016.
If you haven’t heard of Lukas Ruiz, you’ve definitely seen him. The 28-year-old Brazilian musician made Forbes 30 under 30 and graced the cover of Rolling Stone Magazine. Ruiz implements Brazilian Bossa Nova with house music in his song “I Will Find.” The acoustic guitar riffs under the lyrics “my only peace of mind, please tell me it’s by your side.” The song strives to find an outlet to rest and recharge, a yearning for a peaceful place to relax, and perhaps that place is a person. The Bossa Nova rhythm lends to the calming lyrics, putting the listener at instant ease. His music is the kind to vibe to if you’re looking for a more relaxed and laid-back house set. But don’t take that to mean Ruiz’s music is any less dynamic than other higher energy house sets.
Born in Germany, Yulia Niko lives in Berlin and creates some of the most unique songs in the house today. In her song “Pura Vida” she uses a 4/4 drum beat with some background laughter as a slow build, leaving the listener antsy for what’s to come. The beat drills itself into your soul until the melody slows down, but the tension remains high. The beat picks back up, making the listener think they are about to embark on something awesome, but combined with the chatter and laughter in the background the listener borders on the verge of uneasy anxiety. The seven-minute song introduces some percussive instruments about halfway through—I believe the song uses congas and a den-den daiko— to build up the tension. This tune made me feel like I was in a horror movie and I loved every tense moment. I can only imagine what a live Yulia Niko set includes.