Coachella: The Five Best Guitar Moments From the First Weekend

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Thu, Apr 19, 2012 at 10:31 AM

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Andrew Youssef/OC Weekly
By Adam Lovinus

See also:

*Our complete Coachella coverage

*Coachella Preview 2012: Everything You Need to Know About the Performers

*Coachella: Five Signs You're An Aging Hipster

This year's Coachella lineup mostly favored artists not necessarily known for guitar prowess, but it did feature some fantastic fretwork. (And we're not even counting Cole Alexander playing his axe with his wang.) Texas blues appears to be on its way back in vogue if Gary Clarke Jr.'s Coachella reception means anything, but the proggy art rockers and indie heroes also did what they do best. Here are five standout moments that happened on six-strings this past weekend.

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Timothy Norris/LA Weekly
Gary Clarke, Jr., "Third Stone from the Sun" into "Bright Lights"

Comparing a guitarist to Jimi Hendrix is pretty annoying, but hey, that's what happens whenever a young, black man stands out playing blues-based rock & roll. Clark, Jr. made good on this comparison with this tribute to the god of the electric guitar, winning a huge reception at Coachella.

Manchester Orchestra, "Shake It Out"

The fierce double-guitar attack of guitarists Andy Hull and Robert McDowell rattled the collective solar plexus of the Mojave Stage this weekend. The climax came in the intense ascending outro of this 2009 hit during which the festival audience worked itself into a frenzied, sustained applause--definitely a high-energy point of the weekend.

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Andrew Youssef/OC Weekly
St. Vincent, "Black Rainbow"
Annie Clark may have been pissed off this weekend. The first sign was her near-destruction of a theramin during the set opener on Saturday night. Another indicator was this brutal jam from her 2009 Actor album, which she completely annihilated during the discordant final throes of the closing chord progession.

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