Here are some of our favorite moments from Hopscotch Music Festival 2022

By Jonas Chisolm

September 16, 2022

Photo: Sorena Dadgar 

Hopscotch Music Festival has never been just about the big-name headliners, but more about discovering new artists, people, and experiences. Each year the festival’s lineup adapts to bring in fresh acts and new experiences for music lovers. Similar to last year, Moore Square and City Plaza served as the stages while club shows were added at Slim’s and The Pour House Music Hall. Even with the rain delaying a couple sets on Saturday, there were plenty of experiences to go around. This year boasted main stage performances from the likes of Kim Gordon, Seun Kuti, Perfume Genius, Charlie Crockett, and Makaya McCraven, while packed club shows featured acts like Cactus Lee, MJ Lenderman, and North Carolina standouts Black Haus and Loamlands. Much like its host city of Raleigh, Hopscotch has evolved over the last 12 years. While some aspects may seem different today, a lot of what makes it special remains the same. 

Here are some of our favorite performances from Hopscotch Music Festival 2022:

Seun Kuti, the youngest son of Fela Kuti performing at Hopscotch Music Festival in Raleigh at Moore Square Park on Friday night. Photo: Sorena Dadgar


A band like Wand is not one you’d expect to hear playing in a park while relaxing on a blanket, but that is partly what made this one of our favorite sets. Their Moore Square Park performance took place around sunset as many were beginning to trickle in for the night. Placed against a psychedelic backdrop of visuals reminiscent of falling deep into a void, Corey Hanson’s vocal performance was as quietly confident as his lead guitar performance was electrifying. All sixty minutes were packed to the brim with tight transitions and face-melting solos that seemed to reel people in. The Los Angeles band’s distilled psychedelic synergy was on full display throughout their entire set. 

Cory Hanson of Wand performing Friday night at Hopscotch in Moore Square Park. Photo: Sorena Dadgar

Courtney Barnett

Known for songs such as “Avant Gardener” and “Pedestrian at Best,” the headliner of Hopscotch 2022 was none other than Aussie rocker, Courtney Barnett. Playing to what may have been the biggest crowd of the weekend, Barnett took the stage with drummer Dave Mudie and bass player Bones Sloane and began a performance that, even with some technical difficulties, never wavered. Her stage banter, while maybe dry to the untrained ear, carried with it small moments of levity. Introducing her song “Depreston” by saying, “This song is about trying to buy a house,” you could feel the audience becoming more and more invested. Closing tune “Write a List of Things to Look Forward To” was the cherry on top of one of the best sets of the weekend.

Courtney Barnett performing in City Plaza on Thursday night at Hopscotch Music Festival. Photo: Sorena Dadgar


Durham’s Jooselord took the stage on Friday night as Slim’s filled with a sea of bodies. Dressed in their signature all-black aesthetic, he and his partner in crime Jovi Mo$coni, pulled folks through a cacophony of trap-infused mayhem all while in a room that could barely fit about 100 people. Seemingly possessed crowd members threw their bodies around with reckless abandon as soon as Joose said “go.” Old favorites like “Pirates” and “Vent” brought along with them bedlam while Joose’s newest anthem “Quarantine” shook the dive bar with chants of “Let me out this b**tch!” That single specifically harkened back to the dog days of 2020 when we all wanted to be anywhere except home. Attendees could be seen headbanging, crowd surfing, and moshing for the rapper’s entire set. In a venue like Slim’s, a bar with rich punk and metal roots, Jooselord looked like he was right at home.  

Jooselord performing to a packed house at Slim’s on Friday night for Hopscotch. Photo: Sorena Dadgar


Toeing the line somewhere between punk and good ole fashioned rock ‘n’ roll, Raleigh’s Headkicker shredded to a packed Slim’s crowd on Saturday night. A relatively new band (their first show was in the summer of 2021), Headkicker brought forth a fixed sense of urgency all night. Every word that left vocalist Steve Synch’s mouth felt like it mattered more than anything. Every note that sprung from guitarist Andrew Manson’s amplifier rang out with staggering intensity. Performing pounding tunes like “The Law,” there was never a wasted second. Headkicker worked through their setlist like a boxer hunting for a knockout, all while the crowd seemed desperate to take blow after blow. 

Raleigh rock band Headkicker at Slim’s in downtown Raleigh on Saturday night for Hopscotch. Photo: Sorena Dadgar

Dawn Richard

The power of moving your body can be healing and that’s just what Dawn Richard’s set did. The New Orleans-based singer-songwriter and former Danity Kane and Dirty Money member has reinvented herself time and time again. Richard’s band (equipped with two backup dancers dressed in vibrant neon green bodysuits and LED face masks) had a seemingly endless supply of stamina to match Richard’s stage presence. Simultaneously blending elements of R&B, house, and pop in a post-Renaissance world, Richard served a gumbo of sounds fresh to those in attendance.

Dawn Richard performing in City Plaza for Hopscotch. Photo: Sorena Dadgar

Flock of Dimes

Even with a set containing technical difficulties, sweltering heat, and harsh direct sunlight, Flock of Dimes– the solo project of singer and guitarist Jenn Wasner (one-half of Wye Oak)– seemed determined to go with the flow. The Carrboro-based artist made all of these issues look like a breeze as she weaved through each song with an all-encompassing sonic levity. Thanks to stunning musicianship, and even a few instrument changes, the band electrified a sparse but attentive Friday afternoon crowd. Playing lots of songs from her newest record Head of Roses, the hour-long set saw Wasner dazzle attendees with a plethora of captivating guitar solos and the lush vocals fans have come to know from the Baltimore native. 

Jenn Wasner of Flock of Dimes and Wye Oak performing at Moore Square on Friday afternoon. Photo: Sorena Dadgar

Kassie Krut

Seeing Kassie Krut reminded us of how truly unique the music of Hopscotch can be. The new project from art rock band Palm’s Eve Alpert and Kasra Krut sounds heavily influenced by the noisy and aggressive electronic music of the past (Nine Inch Nails) and current darkwave artists like Boy Harsher. The Philadelphia group was joined by Matt Anderegg playing a drum pad live and boasted two synths and dissonant looped guitar rounding out the sonic experience. The tightly packed crew of onlookers didn’t seem to always understand what they were hearing, but throughout the 45-minute set, what may have been a curious gaze turned into a gothic dive bar dance floor. 

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