The Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival takes place in the desert, so organizers will always benefit from headlines proclaiming it "hot." But Coachella is reliably awesome, a great place to see the Strokes and suffer from heat stroke, stand behind McLovin in the Porty-Potty line, watch a scrawny indie rocker throw a hissy fit, and spot L.A. socialites just tryin' to blend in (we see you, Paris Hilton!). This year some huge sets streamed live at a Coachella YouTube channel, so The Amp sat through an hour of Big Audio Dynamite anxiously awaiting "Rush" (they played it last, of course, well after Mick Jones proclaimed, "Jackrabbits, man... they're happening!" like a balder Austin Powers). And as usual, we did the hard work for you -- watch these six videos and start complaining about how crappy the parking lot was and everyone will believe you were there:
The Biggest Bang: Kanye West
The opening song asked, "Can we get much higher?" and West rose above the Coachella crowd on a crane. 'Ye's favorite hook dude Bon Iver was in the house, as was Pusha T and some sort of mythical backdrop that's not going to do much for anyone who thinks West has a Jesus complex. But West's ambitious set was one of the most beautiful we've ever seen. Watch the full thing in great quality at Rapdose.
The Biggest Triumph: Arcade Fire
A few years ago, Arcade Fire were content to let a dude in a motorcycle helmet slapping a drumstick against the second stage scaffolding serve as spectacle. This year, they let the geniuses at the Creator's Project lend a hand, sculpting a light show totally befitting of their epic performance. Now they're sounding like Grammy winners.
The Biggest Loser: Cee Lo Green
If your biggest hit is titled "F--- You," it's not wise to be a jerk to your audience so everyone can shout it back at you. Cee Lo showed up late, played out of tune, and had a 'tude problem. Come on, man, would Gwyneth Paltrow behave like that?
The Biggest Wha?: Jeff Goldblum
According to the L.A. Times, the actor shot a Funny or Die video with his "band," the Mildred Snitzer Orchestra. Seriously, he played a piano positioned near the festival entrance for 90 (!) minutes! We anxiously await the final product.
The Biggest Holy Crap: DFA 1979
Adjust your speaker volume accordingly: This Canadian noise-thrash two-piece know how to sound totally unhinged and totally awesome at the same time. Prepare to blow a synapse.
[Photo: Chelsea Lauren/WireImage.com]
- Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival