April 21st, 2012, 11:56 pm · · posted by GUEST
Surprisingly, I’ve found my fourth or fifth wind and I’m feeling my energy level creep back up again, pretty much at the same rate the sun is setting. Good thing, too, because I was getting close to tossing in the towel and taking a nap during Andrew Bird.
I’ve been perpetually lagging all day, always one step behind the cool different things I’ve wanted to capture this second Coachella weekend.
Didn’t get back onto the field until just after 4, so I missed Grace Potter’s dedication to Levon, not to mention more Destroyer, lots more Childish Gambino and at least a slice of no-holds-barred Azealia Banks.
I decided to skip Kaiser Chiefs on the main in the name of witnessing all of an outstanding, Fela-infused set from Merrill Garbus and tUnE-yArDs and checking in on Buzzcocks … but Buzzcocks, in their casual punks-in-summer finery, sounded great as usual while not quite attracting a hearty enough crowd to cheer along. (Really hard to do that when outside it feels like God is cranking up his desert BBQ for some holiday-weekend grilling.) Plus, by the time I came back to Kaiser Chiefs — fittingly for a round of “Oh My God” — I had apparently missed seeing frontman Ricky Wilson come down from the stage to not just enter the crowd, but fully make his way to the beer garden, grab a brew, then head back to the soundboard scaffolding … which he proceeded to climb whilst getting mobbed.
At least that’s how it was told to me in between gems at Andrew Bird’s set on the Outdoor stage. I don’t doubt the account, but if you were watching the webcast, you might have a more accurate picture in your head about it.
I didn’t entirely miss the next special moment, when Annie Clark (aka St. Vincent) joined Bird on a lilting number that sounded sublime in the slow-cooling air. I was at least within earshot from the start, and fully saw the last half. So maybe I’m finally catching up to the good stuff … the weather just turned beautiful all while Noel Gallagher was singing “Don’t Look Back in Anger.” (Don’t know why so many people keep slagging him off for being boring. Yeah, he’s dull to look at. But twice now out here I’ve thoroughly enjoyed the oasis of Oasis he’s provided.)
So I’m finding the moments, enough of them anyway to not just make my day as an overly familiar two-timer a lively one, but also assure that people who only came for this replay weekend are indeed getting their own equally special festival.
Besides, NOW is when it gets really good: Squeeze and/or Jeff Mangum for an appetizer, followed by a tapas spread of St. Vincent and the Shins before the main dream sequence is activated: Feist > Bon Iver > Radiohead, offset (maybe) with some dance grooves at Kasabian and Miike Snow. I’ve been hearing Squeeze kick it up again from afar, and Desert Jeff just tossed this over: “Jeff Mangum covers Daniel Johnston’s ‘True Love Will Find You in the End.’ 506 former Sam Goody employees faint.”
Still so much more ahead in the next five hours. Time to really wake up again. Need Red Bull, stat. And where’s that Flat Iron Willy sandwich stand?!?
By Ben Wener for The Orange County Register.