The iconic Coachella Music & Arts Festival will be taking over Indio, California’s Coachella Valley over the next two weekends, and just like in past years, the eyes of the world are on the event as we anticipate the live stream and all the surprises that come along with what is one of the world’s biggest annual events.
We’ll be on ground to cover weekend two, but ahead of weekend one, we wanted to share with you seven acts we don’t think you should miss – whether you’re on ground at the event in California, or watching digitally. Some you’ll know, and some you won’t – but to save us all a bit of time, we’re going to skip the three headliners from this list. After all, if you don’t know whether or now you want to see Radiohead, Kendrick Lamar or Lady Gaga (who replaced Beyoncé last month), then this probably isn’t a festival for you.
Fresh from touring Australia for the Laneway Festival, it felt like the artist everyone was talking about was East London singer/songwriter and producer Nao, and with good reason. Largely an unknown before she arrived, she left a bona fide star, with plenty heading out and getting their hands on her debut LP For All We Know, which came out last year. And now it’s Coachella’s turn, and we don’t think they’ll be disappointed.
Jagwar Ma (Friday)
Also having witnessed these guys in action at Laneway Festival in Australia earlier this year, I can comfortably say that the Sydney group have never sounded better. They’re more energetic than ever, tighter than ever and have taken music new and old to another level. And their new album Every Now & Then is just magnificent. Don’t miss them.
Hans Zimmer (Sunday)
The legendary composer has been touring the world under the guise of a show called “REVEALED”, which takes us through his cinematic catalogue – from The Dark Knight to The Lion King – with a full orchestra and a mix of original and re-imagined versions. he also promises a slew of special guests. These shows take place right before he comes to Australia, too. You can read more about those shows HERE. It’ll be an interesting and no doubt unforgettable show to witness in the desert.
Shannon and the Clams (Friday)
Their shows have previously been described as “among the best in the world” and has the “sound of a prom band in 1964 getting dosed with acid and having the sweetest lovelorn freak out. Imagine a brawling Etta James, backed up by the 13th Floor Elevators singing Shangri La’s tunes.” (punknews.org).
In our own words, Shannon and the Clams are a weird, fun little band out of Northern California, who deliver bold, energetic shows that are not to be missed. Impossible to pigeon hole, they’re a strong addition to the line-up and deserve to be discovered by everyone in attendance.
Father John Misty (Friday)
Given his new record Pure Comedy is filled with an almost ten minute epic track “Leaving L.A.”, which dictates his distaste for the city in which much of the Coachella audience is from, there should be an interesting vibe between the songsmith and his crowd. We hope it’s awkward, and we know it will be wonderful. We can’t wait to hear tracks from the new album either. The man never disappoints.
We’ve always been fans of this Spanish band – who just keep getting better with every show they play. We promise you won’t be disappointed by their energetic live show, filled with some excellent music to boot.
I was blown away by SOHN at SXSW, to the point where I awarded him Best Sound in our annual SXSW Awards. And now he’s an act I consider unmissable no matter where he’s playing. Don’t miss your chance to find out what all the fuss is about yourself.
Elsewhere on the lineup, the likes of Twin Peaks, Local Natives, The Head and the Heart, The Avalanches, Bon Iver, Sampha, BROODS, Maya Jane Coles, Oh Wonder, Tennis, Preservation Hall Jazz Band, King Gizzard and the Lizard Wizard are also among our must-sees for the weekend. There really is incredible music no matter where you look.
Coachella runs the same line-up over two consecutive weekends, April 14th to 16th and 21st to 23rd. To see the full line-up, get your hand on the set times, and for more details about the event, head to their official website.