April 15th, 2012, 12:36 pm · · posted by GUEST
The earlier part of the afternoon felt a little sleepy. People waking up late after Friday, taking their time getting to the festival, and the earliest bands on the bill usually have a gentler style of music anyway. That all changed, for us at least, with the arrival of the Buzzcocks, those spiky, rapid-fire elder statesmen of melodic British punk, on stage in the Gobi tent.
Founders Pete Shelley and Steve Diggle look older now — it’s been 35 years or so since they launched the band –but their voices are strong, their rapid-fire guitar riffing still delivers an electric current to the brain. And, bonus for fans on Saturday, the short length of many of their songs meant you got a whole lot of Buzzcocks packed into a 55-minute set.
They started off with lesser-known numbers, a few Pete Shelley solo tunes (“Homosapian” and “Telephone Operator”) and newer songs (their last album, 2006′s “Flat-Pack Philosophy,” while not heard much compared to the older “Singles Going Steady”-era tunes, is worthy). And even with those songs, a quite respectable mosh pit surged to life in front of the stage, with dancers popping to the top to get crowd-surfed overhead until inevitably the security guards grabbed and pulled them to safety.
But it was the final blast of classic Buzzcocks that really fired the pit dancers up (most of them new-generation fans) while getting the older, perhaps original-era fans singing along with all the choruses. Check out this final run of goodness: “Something’s Gone Wrong Again” flowed into “What Do I Get?” (with everyone singing the “whoa-oh-oh” chorus) into “Promises.”
“Orgasm Addict” led to “Harmony In My Head” and then to “Ever Fallen In Love (With Someone You Shouldn’t've” A long version of “I Believe” offered up many repetitions of the phrase “There is no love in this world anymore.” Not true. Plenty of love for the Buzzcocks on Saturday, ours among the many.
By Peter Larsen for The Orange County Register
For more Coachella coverage all weekend (and next!) go toocregister.com/coachella.