Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Coachella 2009 - Day 1

I have officially returned from Coachella. Well I got back around 3 am on Sunday the 19th. 2 hours and 15 minutes from Indio to Santee, not too shabby. I have a shit ton of videos that you can catch along with reading. Keep in mind this was the first real time I had used my MinoHD flip camera, so the shots that are closer to the stage have a nasty over-modulation. But if you can stand that, they sound nice and look extremely nice. My artist wrap up is right here:

Click Keep on Reading for all the reviews and videos from Day 1

Day 1
I drove up Thursday night with my buddies: Shane, Jay, Jenna, Bobe, and Andrea. After getting to their hotel around 9:30 we were off to the Filter Pre-Coachella Party, which we had VIP access to I might add. So we drove out to literally an oasis called the Oasis Yacht Club. Pretty good times had there, sans the fact that they ran out of alcohol around 11:55 PM. Rookie mistake. But since it was all free I guess I can't complain. Got back to the hotel around 2 and passed the F out. Woke up around 8:30 to head over to my own condo to relax a bit and get ready for the day.

The plan was to get in the festival no later than 1 so I could catch Dead and the Headlights. Well traffic going in did not allow it. We got to the main stage around 2:30 just in time to catch We Are Scientists which are always a good time. I watched them play from about 2:50 till 3:40 cause I totally forgot about Cage the Elephant. I rushed over to the Mojave where I watched Cage absolutely rip their tent apart with a non single that I was stoked on hearing the non single, Sabertooth. You can catch the video right here:

After Cage, I thought I would give Steve Aoki a shot. Big mistake. Yes he has good beats, yes he is somewhat of a local boy, but what is the line between DJing and just pressing play. Aoki met that. He was barely behind the decks, was on the mic almost the whole time, and did a little too much raft riding. That being said, I danced my ass off to a couple songs including "autoerotique gladiator." Check it:

After Aoki I headed over to the Mojave tent to catch a band that I have been dying to see for a long time, The Hold Steady. They played to a super packed tent and I loved it. I was pretty close to the stage so the video isn't the best sound quality but it is definitely audible. The Hold Steady seem like they could be the nicest guys ever. Check out the video for Sequestered in Memphis (this is probably the worst sounding video):

I stayed for about half their set before leaving to go check out a couple songs of Los Campesinos. I had never seen them live but I have their older EPs and knew I was a fan. Despite some technical difficulties their set was awesome, the first half at least. I filmed them playing the song "Ways To Make It Through the Wall." Again not the best audio quality but its bearable:

After watching a couple songs of Los Campesinos and getting my ears blown away, I headed over to the Coachella Stage to catch one band that I took the trip to see, The Black Keys. Their latest album, "Attack & Release" is still one of my favorite albums from 2008. Pure rock and roll, and good times for sure. I saw about 90 % of their set which at times was a little boring, but for the most part, highly entertaining. I say boring because I don't really know what I was expecting but I didn't get it. Which isn't necessaily a bad thing, just surprised I suppose. Check out them playing Strange Times here:

I left Black Keys early cause I wanted to catch the last part of The Ting Tings. I immediately regretted that decision. I walked into what seemed like a kindergarten school teacher speaking to kids who are too young to even be in here class. Her voice was annoying, and I could barely hear the drums or the guitar, just her voice. This is sad for me cause I actually enjoy their album and not just the two singles. Disappointing to say the least.

Next up was another band that I was really excited to see. Their new album, Tonight: Franz Ferdinand, has made its fair share of visits to my CD player or ipod. I have seen them live once before but it had been awhile so I was stoked. They played from 6:35 to 7:25 and I enjoyed every bit of it. Playing stuff from every album including my now all time favorite Franz song, No You Girls. Audio is a bit rough when the bass drum hits:

NASA played the Casbah back in February and I was super bummed that I missed them. Anyone releases an album featuring Karen O, David Byrne, Sea Jorge, and Tom Waits definitely deserves my attention. By far the most visually appealing performance of the weekend included a moon landing stage, sexy aliens, a giant dancing robot, and guest appearances galore. Maybe not the guests I would have like to have seen but still very appealing. The video doesnt have the best audio quality but you definitely get some good shots of the dancing creatures:

Next up on the list was Ghostland Observatory in the Sahara Tent. Seeing them at Street Scene and at Coachella last year I was expecting another entertaining show. This is the best video I shot for the whole weekend. Sounds great, looks great, and I had a great time. Definitely overflowing the limits of the tent they played pretty much everything off their second record, Paparazzi Lightning. Including the song they opened with, Piano Man, which I filmed. Check it out here:

After Ghostland, I had probably the biggest schedule conflict of the whole festival. Dance and Mashup machine Girl Talk started playing within 5 minutes of Silversun Pickups. I had seen both groups before so I was conflicted. I decided to go with Silversun Pickups only because the amount of people I could already see would be at the Sahara Tent for Girl Talk. Plus there isn't much to see with his live set. At least with Silversun Pickups I can gauck at the bassist Nikki. This was the first time heading to the Outdoor Theater and I have to say for about 3 quarters of the set, the lead singer Bryan sounded like garbage. But then I heard from other people that every band did not sound good on that stage. By the time they got to Panic Switch their sound was dead on. Providing one of my favorite moments of the whole festival. Check it here:

I was planning on seeing three more bands at this point. It's about 10 PM and my original plan was to go watch Paul McCartney till 11, then go watch Genghis Tron till 11:30, and finish out my night with The Crystal Method. Well that plan went straight down the drain as I was watching McCartney. I enjoy the Beatles as much as everyone else, but I am not a crazed fanatic. But as I sat there watching this pushing 70 year old man completely entertain me. Witty, sharp, looks great, sounds great, everything was awesome. The 2 and a half hour set was shot full of everything you could ask for. Including 3 encores and an AMAZING backing band. I shot three different videos with my MinoHD that look and sound great. The first is of him playing Eleanore Rigby:

The next song I shot was Band On the Run:

And finally I decided to start filming in the middle of one song which in the end was a mistake cause the next song he played was Hey Jude. And my camera runs out of time right in the middle of the song. So here is half of Live and Let Die and half of Hey Jude:

This was just day 1 of the 2 I was there so expect the rest within the end of the week. Thanks for reading!


Paul Jamason said...

great recap, thanks! can't believe mccartney played an hour past curfew...

Andrew said...

It's even more awesome that they let him do it.