See more photos from Saturday at “Coachella 2011: Day Two with Arcade Fire, Paul Van Dyk, The Kills, Broken Social Scene and More.”
Without road trips lingering or looming, and with just the right amount of hangover, the Coachella crowd attacked the grounds on Saturday, and the bands fought along heroically. The only real loser was the grass, which is starting to get sticky, but more on that in a little bit.
Let's take a look at the GOODs, BADs and UGLYs…
GOOD: No major problems with the gates.We still haven't heard about any serious issues with people getting in. It seems all that criticism from last year might've squeaked the wheel enough to get some grease.
GOOD: Mariachi El Bronx. The noon slot on Saturday is a tough gig, but Los Angeles-based hardcore punkers The Bronx donned their sequined suits, assumed their mariachi alter-egos and kept a few thousand bobbing in the Mojave Tent. We can't speak to the authenticity of their style, but the horns were definitely a nice touch. We'd give them a few dollars for a Boyle Heights serenade any evening.
BAD: The heat. No surprise here, but it was hot. Not record-breaking hot, but still hot enough to sap your life-force. More than once we got up and started walking around the grounds, only to forget where we were going and head back into the shade, and that was long before the first beer. But the heat wasn't all bad: There was also plenty of skin.
GOOD: The Ferris Wheel. When people aren't almost plunging to their tragic deaths, the Ferris Wheel can be a quick escape from the hectic, crisscrossing streams of people below.
UGLY: Coachella fashion always has a little good, bad and ugly, but when it goes wrong, damn. Wendy Gilmartin had a soft spot for the ubiquitous animal hoods, saying, “They're cute, they're fun and they'll be so over next year.” That's not the ugly part. It's the feathers, which have morphed from last year's accessory to this year's WTF. Seriously, people. Perpetuating Native American stereotypes is not cool. And it's last year's thing. If you're going to be insensitive to victims of genocide, at least stay current.
GOOD: The Kills. We'll let Drew Tewksbury take this one:
UGLY: People who don't give a hoot. We know, anyone can trade in ten empties for a free bottle of water, but that really doesn't give you the right to toss your shit on the ground. We had a buddy in high school who used to litter and say it created jobs. He was a kind of a dick.
GOOD: Paul Van Dyk. The godfather of raver techno put on a great show, and the crowd came out in its florescent and furry best. We even saw a few pacifiers in there. Says Wendy, “I was in the tent for the whole show dancing like a lunatic (which I guess would be classified under good).”
BAD: Animal Collective. Working for an alt-weekly, you're required to know about Animal Collective. It's part of the packet HR hands you on your first day. But we've always found the music of Avey Tare, Panda Bear, Deakin and Geologist to be kind of pretty, sure, but also numbly repetitive and without highs and lows. As the band started their set on the main stage, it looked like Coachella might be the perfect venue. Were we witnessing the perfect pop complement to the Sahara Tent? Nope. Just pretty music that's repetitive and without highs and lows.
GOOD: Arcade Fire. These guys and gals have been regulars on the festival circuit for years now, long before the Grammy and the mainstream acclaim, probably because they're just really good at entertaining large crowds. Their music is called anthemic for a reason. We've seen better stage effects in years past, but that didn't take away from the show.
Two days down, one to go…
Feeling nostalgic for the bygone days of Friday? Check out “Day 1: Coachella's GOODs, BADs and UGLYs (featuring Paul McCartney, Black Keys, Chemical Brothers and Craigslist)”