April 14, 2013 |
No other genre has benefited more from EDM's current notch on the cultural landscape than urban pop. The global, four-on-the-floor Europop that dance DJs used to become superstars first circled the genre, then sunk its claws in deep thanks to smash singles from Rihanna and Kelly Rowland. Now John Legend is the latest, and most unsuspecting, visitor to the genre-blending world. COACHELLA: Festival photos since 2004 | Day 2 photos Recent club-savvy releases from R&B crooners like Usher, Chris Brown and Ne-Yo have reflected a major shift toward more Europop textures of EDM, even as acts like Frank Ocean and Miguel have aggressively pulled away from the sounds in a bid to craft electronic-dipped R&B that doesn't cater to the dance crowd in search of pulsating synths. The soul crooner surprised sweat-soaked festival-goers who crammed the Sahara tent for Italian spinster Benny Benassi.
April 15, 2011 |
The Coachella Valley will be abloom with celebrities and their acolytes at this weekend's annual music and arts festival. Acts like Kanye West, Sleigh Bells, Cold War Kids and Cee Lo Green are going to attract enormous entourages and also-inviteds, decked out for performances in their casual wear. And what would such a constellation of stars do without a weekend of exclusive parties? Here's a list of this year's high-profile fetes; because they're strictly invite-only, we're sworn to semi-secrecy about their locations.
April 17, 2012 |
The late Tupac Shakur rose again last weekend at Coachella -- brought to life by James Cameron's visual production house Digital Domain, and two hologram-imaging companies, AV Concepts and the U.K.-based Musion Systems. The capacity crowd reportedly went silent with shock when Shakur appeared to rise from the stage, shout a profanity filled version of "What's up Coachella?" and then joined headliners Snoop Dog and Dr. Dre for two songs. But that shock value will only last so long as holographic images are poised to increasingly feature in mainstream music performances.
April 14, 2010 |
Some things about Coachella are obvious. The headliners deliver, and this year they're particularly pro: rap's Warren Buffett, Jay-Z, and stadium rock saviors Muse, plus the multimedia blitz of Gorillaz. The bill's middle is packed with great stuff that you will miss because you're standing in line to recycle your water bottles. One night, you will happen upon a mostly empty tent and from it will pour music that changes your life. As for specifics, here are four on this year's thick lineup that I wouldn't miss.
April 13, 2013 |
First-world problems were evident Saturday afternoon at Coachella as a spate of daytime parties erupted in the desert sunshine like so many alcohol-soaked fireworks. The H&M party took off at 1 p.m. when the young and beautiful converged on the Merv Griffin estate to catch a spirited performance by Santigold. Dressed in a green mesh bathing suit with two dancers who resembled the troops from an alterna-universe Emerald City, the brash singer strutted on the poolside stage, belting out her electronic hits.
April 19, 2012 |
Lost your phone at Coachella? You are not alone. A new study from mobile security company Lookout said there was a 37% spike in the number of people who were searching for a lost phone on the festival grounds and in nearby neighborhoods. What a surprise. A spokeswoman for Lookout said the increase was calculated based on phone locates from Lookout's users in the area surrounding the Coachella venue during last weekend's festival. The company mapped its anonymized data with Foursquare's API and compared the findings with the number of locates happening in the area when Coachella isn't in town.
April 13, 2013 |
This post has been updated. See below for details. INDIO -- Anyone wondering if the lack of dance megastars at this year's Coachella means that they've de-emphasized big dance music, don't worry. This year's Sahara tent somehow managed to be even bigger than in years prior, by an obvious margin. Gone is the typical A-frame enclosure -- instead there's a positively titanic, rounded arena for rave gladiators. The digital wall of visuals expanded to the upper nooks of the roof to make an aquarium of sub-bass topped with throbbing LEDs.
April 14, 2013 |
INDIO -- The frenzied festival atmosphere at Coachella -- where every musical act is always in competition with several others for showgoers' attention -- can lead to a bulking-up effect among artists otherwise inclined toward delicacy and refinement. Late Sunday afternoon, you could see it in sets by the English soul singer Jessie Ware (in the Mojave Tent) and the New York electro duo Tanlines (in the Gobi Tent). On record, each savors the infinite possibilities of the studio, detailing every groove with headphone-ready precision.
April 19, 2013 |
Japandroids, the hard-driving garage rock duo from Vancouver, broke a string during their very first song at weekend two of Coachella in the Sahara tent. "It doesn't happen often, but when it does, it's pretty sweet," said guitarist/ vocalist Brian King of the immediate dilemma. The packed crowd cheered and thrust sunburned arms into the air, beckoning for more music no matter what the price. Japandroids is a rock 'n' roll anomaly at Coachella, a riveting two-piece extravaganza that threatens every preconceived notion about what it takes to rock a crowd in 2013, when electric dance music reigns supreme.
December 16, 2012 |
If the S.S. Coachella is going to last, it's going to need its own rituals. On the night before the inaugural Coachella cruise sets off (I'm currently pregaming in a Ft. Lauderdale, Fla., hotel room) I'm missing all the usual signposts of an impending Coachella back in California. The buying of sunglasses, the selection of driving music for the 10, the debates about after-parties and the congratulations-you-made-it-to-Indio rounds at the Beer Hunter bar (OK, maybe that last one is just me)