And in this corner…
Every year, a few days before Coachella kicks off, festival promoter Goldenvoice releases set-times for the upcoming three days of shows. It’s a great way to get the schedule going for your weekend, but it comes at a price. Inevitably, two (sometimes three!) of the bands you want to see are playing at the same time. Occasionally, you can split the difference. But as the crowds and sun take their toll, the 50/50 becomes increasingly difficult and decisions have to be made – especially given that only a handful of bands get more than an hour to play. Most acts only get between 30-55 minutes on stage. And that’s if they’re on time. It’s a conundrum, but it does let you know where your loyalties lie.
- Round One (Friday) - The Cult vs. The Knife: The recent announcement that Coachella photographers will not be allowed to shoot the Cult from the photo pit tells you all you need to know about the British rock band – they’re old. But still, Ian Astbury and Billy Duffy have an undeniable chemistry and have written some great songs. I’m still planning to see the theatric weirdness of the Knife’s Swedish siblings, but who knows what will happen if I hear some “Wild Flower” on the wind.
- Round Two (Saturday) – Muse vs. Pet Shop Boys vs. Nas: Muse is one of the most popular bands in the world right now. And headlining a major festival like Coachella comes with certain responsibilities. The Muse show is sure to be big, and involve impressive visuals. Not to mention a few surprise elements. That said, Nas is my choice here. Nostalgia tugs at me to sing “West End Girls” with the Pet Shop boys – a staple of my youth. But after seeing Nas’ recent performance with Q-Tip and the Roots on Jimmy Fallon, I was reminded just how commanding of a performer Mr. Nasir Jones really is. And there are sure to be a few surprises in store with Nas’ midnight set as well.
- Round Three (Sunday) – Disclosure vs. Motorhead: I love Disclosure. I named their 2013 debut, Settle, the best record of the year and remain completely entranced by it to this day. However, we’re talking f-----g Motorhead here. The whipper-snappers of Disclosure will be around for years to come. Who really knows how long the world will have some Lemmy in it. This one is a no brainer. The only card to play here is the “Ace of Spades.”