Coachella Preview Part Two - 2014 Suggested Artist List

(part one here)

First, a few disclaimers:

1) My list is heavy on British bands and EDM because those are my great loves, and scant on rap and hop hop, because those are not. I do try to catch some here and there when I can, just to round things out...but ultimately I want to see what I want to see, and I've learned the hard way that if you skip a show you've been anticipating for WHATEVER REASON, you will regret it. Listen to your heart, not what other people think you should see. This is your once-in-a-lifetime experience. 

Obviously, no two schedules are ever going to be the same. (Though if yours is identical, and you live in LA, we should probably be concert buddies.) I'm only sharing mine since I know how overwhelming it is to try and preview the entire lineup. Chances are if you like some of the stuff on my list that's more well known, you'll like some of the lesser known stuff, too. I'm happy to share what I've discovered. 

2. I've categorized by style/sound, not days, mostly because I just really wanted an excuse to use the word "Festrogen" (which apparently I didn't even coin, damn it).

3. When the set times are released, this list will of course be shot to hell. But for now, this is what I got.

Big Time 

Pet Shop Boys

No explanation necessary for these, right? Never seen any of them, out of my mind excited for Muse. One of my few fest regrets is missing Radiohead at Bonnaroo '12, because my companion and I were waaaaay out of it, busy trolling the empty camping area looking for even more, uh, let's call it out-of-it fuel. At the time we were like, Wat the heck, whar is erry1?? 

Well, everyone was gone because EVERYONE WAS AT RADIOHEAD. LOL. Never again will I miss a headliner because I overdid my party favors. Nor should you. LEARN FROM MY MISTAKE. 

Beck just released a new album, so I anticipate he'll play some from that, as well as faves I've been loving for years. It's very mellow and pretty (check out Heart Is A Drum - here's a probably illegal, probably'll get yanked YouTube vid if you don't have Spotify). 

And finally, Pet Shop Boys. Fucking Pet Shop Boys. You can't miss Pet Shop Boys. Classic. Essential. I mean, come on

Brits and Aussies

Empire of The Sun
Jagwar Ma
Beady Eye
The 1975
Frank Turner

So, so much good stuff here, and with the exception of biggies Bastille and Empire of The Sun (who put on a MIND-BLOWING show), all new to me. 

Jagwar Ma - one of my most exciting discoveries. I LOVE their sound (best comparison is probably Stone Roses). I've had What Love on loop for weeks. 

Temples - Terence compared their sound to The Mamas and The Papas, and I concur (check out Shelter Song). Kinda psychedelic and Woodstock-y sounding; I think this will be a fun set. I for one will be going legit Aquarius, flailing my arms like a star child, or a sun child, or a fucking Mars child, I don't know. But it's gonna be good. 

Beady Eye - Do you like Oasis? This is what Liam did when he'd had enough of Noah. I'm not over the moon over it, but I wanna lay eyes on the guy at least. Respect. 

The 1975 - pop-y and upbeat but still angsty and very British sounding. Chocolate's gotten good play, but I really like The City

Frank Turner - Every festival, there'll be one band/singer that I come across that blows me away, and whom I'll be amazed (embarrassed, really) I didn't know of before. If I'm lucky, I discover them before the fest (e.g., The Vaccines, Bonnaroo '13), though sometimes I do not know the awesomeness until it's on a stage right in front of me (e.g., The Walkmen, OL '12). 

Frank Turner is my Coachella '14 whoa discovery. Posts could be written. I mean, this guy. He doesn't write songs. He writes anthems. Love, loss, identity, addiction, growing up, growing old, and everything in between. Insta-love. I only hope I can manage to memorize a few of his songs beforehand, because that is going to be one incredible singalong. I predict some serious fans at that show. Oh, and fun fact: he went to school with Prince William. Shoulda shopped around a bit more, Kate.

Dudes with MacBooks 

Duck Sauce
Gareth Emery
Michael Brun
Fatboy Slim
Guy Gerber
Dillon Francis
Calvin Harris

Not gonna itemize these, but in my final Coachella post I'll list my favorite tracks from each. I kinda think last year's EDM lineup was better, but I'm not complaining. Got my Dillon and my Calvin, never seen Zedd (who's coming off a grammy win!), and Gareth Emery and Alesso? No, not complaining at all. Particularly think Classixx is gonna be a blast, and hearing Barba Steisand live will just be too. much. fun. 

You Know 'Em, You Love 'Em

Foster The People
Capital Cities
The Naked and the Famous
Bombay Bicyle Club

I caught Foster The People at Bonnaroo '12 (super fun), so if I have to give them up, I can. The Naked and the Famous and Grouplove are my only non-missables, but I'd really love to catch Bombay Bicycle Club, too.

Small But Worthy

Bear Hands
Saints of Valory

If you like Grouplove, give Bear Hands a listen. Saints of Valory is a little generic maybe, but in the way that I for one love. Totally up my musical alley. 


Kate Nash
Dum Dum Girls
Lana Del Rey

I didn't know Dum Dum Girls before. Mazzy Star meets Cranberries, almost?

Be High or Be In Love or Be Both

Tom Odell
City and Colour
Washed Out

I don't know if Tom Odell is going to blow up (and keep producing) in the way that some wunderkind singer/songwriters have. And I do think that his sound is pretty…constant, let's say? But I think his voice is incredibly sweet, and I'd love to see what he does to that piano in person. Plus it's always nice to sit and chill and cuddle for a few shows in the afternoon (which is when I'm guessing he'll be on). City and Colour is also great for that (saw him at Outside Lands '12). An excellent opportunity to just rest and gear up for the harder/faster stuff later. 

High, high hopes for Washed Out. Saw them at Outside Lands '12 and their sound was disastrously bad (I think due to the stage they were on?). Love, love, love them; they're actually one of my most-anticipated shows this time around. I won't miss them for anything, set times be damned! Fingers crossed for a reprieve from OL, and hoping against hope they'll be a night show, because mannnnn is this THE music to zone out to. If you don't know it, check out any track, seriously. Incredibly lush and layered and atmospheric gorgeousness. My fave: New Theory.

Why The Hell Not?

Caravan Palace

It's fun to have an interlude at some point - something totally different to break up the day. This is that. Crazy fun French circus music. Gonna break it down and get fuuuuuunky, yessir.


So that's it! Lots of notable exceptions on my list, I know. But I like what I like, and I don't like what I don't like. I have tried and tried to get into Arcade Fire, but they just do nothing for me. And I'm skipping Broken Bells since my Shins experience at Bonnaroo '12 absolutely could not be topped.

For my last post, I'm gonna embed my Spotify Best of Coachella '14 playlist, so if any of this stuff appeals to you, make sure you've got Spotify downloaded so you can check it out! It's free and amazing!

'Til then, rock on weirdos!

One of my favorite art installations from last year. On the back it says, "If you want to go fast, go alone. If you want to go far, go together." It was actually motorized and moved across the grounds, verrrrrry slowly. Considering my state of mind, I was hypnotized to say the least.