After going to bed at the responsible hour of 5:30 AM, thanks to the mega mixin' and power jammin' of DJ Mini Mogul, I didn't manage to pull my ass out of bed until 11:30 AM on Sunday. Didn't really matter, though. What time do you need to get up if you're only going to lounge around by the pool until heading over to the ultimate day at the Coachella Music And Arts Festival? That's what I thought. I stared at the NFL Draft for a while, watched some hoops, lounged around outside, tried to throw Rob Goldklang in the pool, discussed the new Metallica album with Warren Christensen and, um, drank. However, with the sun dipping to tolerable festival levels, it was time to hit the Polo Fields.
While I would have liked to arrive early enough to check out sets by Eisley, Polyphonic Spree, and Soundtrack Of Our Lives, I had seen all of them in the past month or so, so I didn't feel super sad about that. However, I would have liked to hear the public airing of the new Mars Volta material. But there's no use crying over spilled milk and I headed over to catch Bobby Gillespie and his Primal Scream crew on the second stage. God damn, can Mani lay down a bass groove. The 'Scream rocked the desert air with a number of jams from their catalogue, including "Kill All Hippies," "Rocks," "Swastika Eyes," and "Jailbird." The crowd was fully to it, with a number of pods of dancing loonies soaking up the Scottish vibes. Good times and one of the best sets of the weekend.
After some more between-set imbibing, the red and white twins were due to hit the stage, and, like the night after, The White Stripes killed. The crowd was huge in front of the main stage and "Seven Nation Army," "Fell In Love With A Girl," "Hardest Button To Button," and the Meg-fronted "Cold Cold Night" elicited great cheers of joy. Jack's guitar mastery echoed throughout the Indio locale and even the VIP area was full of admirers of the set, more people actually watching the gig than doing blow off hookers' asses for the first time all weekend. Now, THAT takes some doing. More drinking ensued before the well-known trek to the Mojave Tent occurred, to check out a bit of Johnny Marr + The Healers. As always, their indie-guitar poppiness caused many a head to bob and quite a few toes to tap, too. But not as much as in the tent next door, where we witnessed an amazing set from Underworld. The huge Sahara Tent was packed to the gills with pleasure seekers in the mood to dance. The set lasted two hours, with regular club floor-fillers "Born Slippy," "Pearl's Girl" and "Everything, Everything" exploding even further in the crisp desert air (or stuffy-ass tent system, you choose). In between bursts of the wondrous Underworld I jumped out to witness Iggy & The Stooges wondrous reformation. Iggy may be 98 years old, but he is still as frenetic and mental as ever. The Stooges lineup, further enhanced by the addition of Mike Watt, performed a flawless set, with many hits given the once over, including "I Wanna Be Your Dog" and "1969." Listening to the set, it was amazing how relevant and fresh it sounded today, distinct proof of The Stooges influence on many of the current wave of artists.
Back for a bit more Underworld before heading off for more drinks and some hassling of Dayna Talley, I mean, a stirring set from Interpol. Of course, they couldn't go on until it was dark, but their rousing set sounded amazing on this cool, windy night. Frontman Paul Banks even had a short-sleeved shirt on, dismissing his trademark suit for the first time in recent memory. Whether it was "PDA," "NYC," or the rest of the set, each and every song sounded vital and important and showed just how far Interpol had come in such a short time.
The night was to end with one of the most amazing sets of the weekend and it didn't even involve live music. After an amazing gymnastic display by Carlyn Kessler (where I ever came up with the idea to dare her to do to cartwheels followed by a back round-off is beyond me. Vodka and KMX, perhaps?), we weaseled into the Mojave Tent for an awe-inspiring performance from Fischerspooner. I was well aware that it would be a event, but I had no idea it would be so mesmerizing. Casey and Warren would talk to each other between songs, discussing what songs they should do next and complaining about sound issues, etc., in a very choreographed way (although the role of Warren was being played by the light tech, even though Warren was standing behind the mixing board. I was duly confused.) The band finished the night with a double rendition of "Emerge" and although they played the song twice in succession, it took nothing away from the amazing sound, delivery and spectacular nature of the whole performance. It was a wondrous end to a wonderful weekend and big shout outs to all the peeps who made it so special.