Coachella is pretty much the same as last year. It’s really hot and really awesome and we are already sunburned but totally don’t care. Click the jump to check out our coverage from day one, and keep checking back for days two and three over the weekend.
Coachella is really huge and there is a Tesla coil. Once it gets dark, the Tesla coil goes on and and it hums, constantly throbbing in the background, always within earshot when the bands hit their quiet moments. Also, there were a large number of ’90s revival acts with (somehow) many 14-year old fans who were probably jamming to Fatboy Slim in after school daycare. Not hating, just saying! Anyway, after spending the day by the pool for our FADER/Boosted party we rolled to the festival, lost our cars the minute we shut the doors, and checked out Cut Copy from a million miles away. Despite our distance from the stage we were still into it, this would quickly become a theme for the festival. Midway through Cut Copy’s set we ran over to catch a couple songs by NY dudes Vampire Weekend, who—go figure—sound great when it is hot out.
Can we come back to this young teenagers enjoying dance music thing again? Diplo was playing in the dance tent and we actually saw little dudes and dudettes passing the invisible orb. We rocked the good old skeptical eyebrow raise for a second and then were like Oh shit these kids never get to see Diplo because he is always DJing in bars, and then it got kind of poignant and we reminisced about being 14 and going to festivals and getting deep into whoever was playing for little other reason than they were playing and we were there (word to The Presidents of the United States of America). After that we jumped over to the Santogold performance, where she ran through much of her upcoming album and generally seemed pretty happy to be on stage on front of an extra enthusiastic audience. Have we mentioned how crazy awesome her S1W-style dancers are? They keep getting better.
From there we grabbed a couple beers and watched the Verve run through the loudest set ever, like, we couldn’t stay for the whole thing but by the time we were getting ready to watch Spank Rock we could hear dudes BLASTING out “Bittersweet Symphony.” The Verve have a lot more jams than we initially remembered, and finally the FADER office conversations about them being a totally underrated influential band that created THE BEST SONGS TO EXIST EVER (and following this with simulated-shoegaze air guitar) actually made sense for a minute.
The Spank Rock show began with an excellent disco set from Spank Rock DJs Devlin & Darko as well as XXXchange acting as hypeman (and heavily repping The FADER’s hat collab with Panda Bear and New Era) After awhile dudes were getting restless and turning to ask if Spank Rock was ever coming out. It turned out that Naeem was sick and couldn’t make it, and half the crowd bounced while yelling like the world was basically ending. Calm down dudes! At this point we had night time heatstroke, but we somehow stumbled our way over to catch Black Lips play the drunkest set ever.
They were seriously mostly unable to speak coherently. Either way, that’s part of the charm of the band and the moments when they came together and played their rickety but catchy songs made the whole thing totally compelling.
At the end they lit some guitars on fire
and then smashed them.
Neither of those things worked out as well as they probably should have, but it was still great which is pretty much explains Black Lips in general. We tried to find a way out after that but got caught in full on Fatboy Slim mania and literally tripped over people writhing on the ground while on Ecstasy. We eventually made it out and looked for our lost car until it got light out, but whatever, it wouldn’t be a festival without a lost car just chilling in a really dusty lot. Check back tomorrow for more coverage (including Prince!)