Female Artists Are Killing It at Coachella This Year
As a dusty wind whipped behind her in hazy stage light, Solange and her ultra-slick backing band brought serious chops and swagger to the polo fields as nighttime fell over Coachella. And then Beyonce showed up on stage, dancing to "Losing You." It was the first Coachella big celebrity surprise - before Pharrell brought out everyone and their mother - during a festival characterized by strong sets by women.
The musical pretext for the Solange set was laid out by two prominent bands on the L.A. scene, sunwashed afternoon sets by Haim and Warpaint Friday and Saturday.
See also: Our complete Coachella coverage
Haim performed a charged-up, decidedly homegrown vibe, including banter about how they've been sneaking into Coachella since 2004. The Fleetwood Mac comparisons fade in the live setting; the sisters Haim (Este, 28, Danielle, 25, and Alana, 22) bring a more playful, sassy attitude and way more shred.
Both sets felt like high watermarks in the the respective bands' career arc. Haim showed they're ready for bigger stages across the country. Warpaint are prime for after-dark festival sets.
Also winning notice were UK's Kate Nash and Brooklyn's Dum Dum Girls, and Lorde has gotten good reviews as well. Perhaps more importantly, their sets felt spot-on - a refined blend of power and polish that epitomizes Coachella this year.
See also: 10 Proudly Feminist Musicians
Get the Music Newsletter
Keep your thumb on the local music scene each week with music news, trends, artist interviews and concert listings. We'll also send you special ticket offers and music deals.