So you’re going to complain about Coachella?
Cause it totally sucks having a rad 3-day vacation with your best friends wherein everyone is having fun, eating your favorite food(trucks), dancing, smiling, bonding and sharing memories all to a carefully curated live-music soundtrack for your listening and viewing enjoyment.
Yeah, that’s terrible.
Let’s instead look at the top of each days’ bill and pass snap judgment without looking at the 10 bands a day you’d go see at the Echo or El Rey anyway.
Let’s talk about the bands that have already played there in the past, let’s complain about the band that we think in our infinite wisdom is reuniting solely for the money when really we’re just pissed it wasn’t The Smiths.
Let’s complain about ticket prices when we’re all getting comps anyway. Let’s complain about the hip-hop influence that’s pervading recent years while following A$AP on Twitter and watching the video for Thrift Store when no one is looking.
Let’s complain about the Red Hot Chili Peppers, never mind that they helped invent alternative music when you were 3 and your older sister who now likes Deap Valley was super into New Kids On The Block.
Let’s post ironic fake lineups to hide the fact that you’re bummed your shitty band isn’t on the bill.
But it’s such a long drive, and the traffic, and no one has reception, and the rooms are booked, and you have to wait in line for a drink, and there’s no enough water, and there’s too much dance music, and.....YOU’RE AN ASSHOLE.
It’s fucking awesome. Get over it, get over yourself and HAVE FUN.
I will be there with my better half, as we go every year and have an incredible time, like an annual honeymoon, kissing under the stars, knowing every inch of the terrain from going year after year (Yes I went to the 1st one, very proud of that), dancing to bands from all across the country, laughing, sweating, catching up with friends, making plans to meet up at designated times then getting distracted by something awesome and meeting up by accident later anyway, being at the outdoor theater at Sunset, having flashbacks to playing there (twice, let me enjoy that, OK?), getting years confused when discussing past performances, buying the app, getting a tan, beating the crowd, knowing the shortcuts, having the special wristband, standing side stage, saying, “remember that year when….”, living the dream and living our lives instead of typing about it.
And to those who say, "easy for you to say, you get the good passes, you can use the golf carts, you don't get get bullied by security and rounded up like cattle and told where not to go", I say -
"Exactly. I worked hard under-earning in middling bands and making good music for years to finally have a band be fortunate enough to achieve some kind of success and afford me the luxury of fading into obscurity with an artist wristband on my 39 year old wrist. And security doesn't discriminate, I have just as many problems in the Gen Pop area as I do in the shaded, beverage laden promised land. Having said that, I've gone with the worst passes and had the best time, so just suck it up and don't be a pussy. I'm old and need to be pampered, I don't like dust and hate being around other people, so I need a little more. Now can we continue?
You say the lineup sucks, I call bullshit on that and I'll take it one step further.....I think if you went you would have a blast, let your hair down, come home like Cameron after he wrecked his dad's car and just maybe your cold frozen heart would warm enough to realize that there's more to life than KindKreme and being against everything.
Here’s what I’ll be watching, no irony, no bullshit, just a list of bands I’m curious to ecstatic to see. Color commentary is dead honest, not trying to be funny, but if it is, feel free to hire me for your writer's room.
* The Stone Roses
* Lou Reed - (I know, but he’s Lou Reed, and I’ll be hanging out with him and you won’t, so suck it Sweet Jane)
* Grinderman - (People I trust love and apparently awesome, but I’ve yet to hear them, much like I’ve never seen the Deer Hunter or all of 2001 A Space Odyssey)
* Tegan And Sara - (I gave in)
* Band Of Horses - (I think)
* Beach House - (Do I like them?)
* Foals - (I remember a really good song).
* Tommy Trash - (I say I want to see this and dance with my wife but we’ll end up watching someone else who’s on at the same time so we can hang with that friend who we never get to see cause their friend is the tour manager/tech/singer)
* EARL SWEATSHIRT!!!
* SPARKS!!!! - (Age appropriate rock which will erase the memory of Squeeze last year)
* Dam Funk - (He’s meant to be awesome, right?)
* Palma Violets
* IO MOTHERFUCKING ECHO!!!!!!!
* The Neighbourhood!!
* Phoenix - (30 minutes ago I would have said, "ehh", but in keeping with the spirit of the above words I realized it will be a radical dance party and time to stop being a dick and enjoy the Rich French Strokes).
* New Order - (I’ve seen them be good ONCE, and I was about as far from sober as I’ve ever been and it was in a palace in England with the Chemical Brothers and Underworld, so that’s not an accurate gauge of how good they actually were, having said that Hooky isn’t in the band (as of now), but it’s New Order, so you pray Bernard sings in key while you dance and sing along. Meanwhile I’ll be dancing with one of my favorite people who happens to be a lovely woman as well as their agent. - And while we’re at it, it is not lost on me that my perspective is of one who is in the music industry and has been for 24 years, so sorry if I say agent a lot, or reference managers and friends in bands. It's my JOB. If I worked at Starbucks I'd tell you all about how people pretend to order coffee only dip out when no one is watching to nuke the bathroom, OK?)
* Benny Bennassi - (Like 10 other I’ll list and say I want to see but in the end I will end up missing for Kogi or waiting for a golf cart to meet up with someone who’s no longer there)
* VIOLENT FEMMES!!!
* Puscifer - (Friend of a friend, seems fun, never heard)
* THE MAKE-UP - HOLY SHIT FUCK I AM DYING HAVE SEEN THEM 3 TIMES AND CANNOT BELIVE THE GOD SVENONIUS IS BACK WITH THE GOSPEL YEAH-YEAH SOUND THANK BLACK JESUS AND BASED GOD!
* Bat For Lashes
* Major Lazer - (Accept it, Diplo is a fucking genius)
* 2 Chainz - (White people love ignorant black music even more than they love Radiohead).
* Danny Brown
* Trash Talk
* Pusha T - (Clipse is all-time, I ain’t new to this)
* Baauer - (White people and trap music, again…but this is where the good looking kids like AJ Anglais will be, so natch I want to lurk).
* Action Bronson
* SAVAGES - (BEST BAND IN THE UK, YOU FUCKING KIDDING ME???).
* RHCP - (Best live band in the world, not debatable, shut the fuck up, how about you learn to play your instrument like these guys, be on your own shit creatively for over 25 years without compromise all while making more money than god, THEN come back and talk shit you tempeh eating fan of bad music)
* Bad Seeds - (I’m gonna be honest, I saw them in the dusty field in one of the early, early ones, or an early Lolla – don’t know a lot of their music, but I like the vibe a lot)
* VAMPIRE WEEKEND - (Four words – GOSSIP GIRL SEASON ONE. Two more words – WHITE PEOPLE. One more word – Graceland. These dudes are awesome, and apart from seeing them be very condescending to a black security guard a previous year (basically just like the scene in Breakfast Club where Bender mocks Carl the janitor), they are fun and make you want to put a sweater around your neck, live off your father’s Amex, punch Carter Baizen and eat a macaroon)
* Wu-Tang Clan - (why not?)
* Tame Impala
* La Roux - (Again, will probably miss for a Cool Haus ice cream sandwich I’ll put off until I can no longer stick to my no-sugar diet)
* Gaslight Anthem - (Same manager, good dudes, Bruce adjacent)
* The Faint - (Def subliminally influenced SWR, and I will rock the fuck out hard when they play their Nebraska-wave dance macabre madness)
* Dinosaur Jr. - (Almost lost my hearing in the pit at Lolla 92 (I think 92) watching these dudes. Now he has grey hair, what’s not to like?)
* Raider Klan -(Don’t know but sounds essential)
* Disclosure - (If you don’t know and you say you like dance music you are in a fraternity and drink beer inverted and have herpes)
* Father John Misty - (Same agent and he’s weird, right?)
* DIIV - (The future, even if it sounds like the past. Same manager. I know...I know)
* Little Green Cars - (Best of the Irish-invasion, with the exception of Hudson Taylor who should score a Graduate type movie that I should one day make)
* White Arrows - (Never heard, but Mickey is a nice enough kid, and I like it when local boys and friends of friends succeed).
So see you there, right?