Coachella 2013 : A Journal
, , / 17 May 2013

I arrived late, originally wanted to see Tokyo Sky Paradise Orchestra at 1pm but managed to watch Metric instead and Passion Pit (both halfway) and watched Lee Scratch Perry. Hung out at the VIP tent a bit to rest and snack, it is also the only place that sells liquors other than beers.




Beach House was next in line but the time clashes with Yeah Yeah Yeahs, which I skipped anyway to watch Infected Mushroom cause I heard their stage design and visuals were amazing and got curious, from there I stage-hopped and watch some bands bits by bits while waiting for The Stone Roses (which, by the way, turns out to be the best moment ever with killer lighting and visuals).


I rested and waited for BLUR to perform at the main stage, but left when they played ‘Coffee and TV’ because I was so curious about watching How to Destroy Angels, the project of Trent Reznor and his wife (Nine Inch Nails fans would know), at the Mojave Stage – I noticed that this stage seems like it’s especially for bands with cool stage designs, conceptual in another word. The band projected visuals on strings so that the band members appeared as silhouettes.







When all is over, we took a shuttle bus to the hotel and get a good night’s rest for yet another big day tomorrow.

As soon as we got here we watched Vintage Trouble who covered lots of Elvis songs and other old songs, this California band’s genre is soul and rock. He went down the stage joined the crowds and had such a good time that he ripped his pants, it was so fun.


Then I continued on my band to band quest; Dropkick Murphy’s first song was dedicated for the Boston bombing victims, afterwards was Bat For Lashes, then Majer Lazer which was very crowded that I only managed a glimpse of the sexy dancers from the side of the stage, but it was okay cause I was killing time waiting for ska-two tone band The Selecter. When they finally came on, it was already sunset, making it the backdrop to their stage.



I wanted to rest but passed Grizzly Bear along the way where we watched a bit of, then continued on to the VIP lounge for more booze and snacks while waiting for Postal Service (watched only halfway), but the lighting and sound was superb while watching Descendents that I caught from the middle of the show till the end.


I should note that since the lineups for today is all too awesome to pass that I ended up missing quite a lot but at least watched most of them only halfway – still better than nothing at all.





Moved to see The XX where I didn’t get decent spot to stand, so I lay down on the ground watching the visuals shot above me into the darkness like clouds. Then Two Door Cinema Club, passed by Phoenix on the way to see New Order while my friends went their own way to see Sigur Ros. I actually went backstage for New Order, for encore they tribute a song for Ian Curtis called ‘Love Will Tear Us Apart’.


All I can say is that this has been the most tiring day in my life, I literally couldn’t walk. As soon as the adrenaline stop, I’m starting to feel like my feet were made of leads, I literally couldn’t walk. I got a worse case of the blisters, but I was worth it.

Wanted to wake early but I’m still having a difficult time walking but forced myself and finally watched metal band Ghost BC at 1.25pm, it wasn’t that crowded and the high sun  stinging through your skin. Naturally I head to the VIP lounge again for suntans and picnics to wait until the next band starts; because it was too hot when Jessie Ware played that they ended up giving away plastic fan, then Grimes, Dinosaur Jr. which wasn’t too crowded either at the outdoor stage, but you could see so many old people and (surprise, surprise) babies wearing their larger than life protective head phones to protect their ear drums. On this last day people are out enjoying the atmosphere and the weather in Coachella. Enjoying the sun while lying down on the grass just to chill.




From here I headed to the main stage for Social Distortion where it’s already crowded and sunset. Then watched 15 minutes of Tame Impala, where I met lots of Australians and their huge flags, then La Roux, watched a bit of Vampire Weekend, from there grabbed myself a drink from the lounge (dehydrated to the max).

Before finally continuing to the Sahara stage cause I was curious with the dome (shaped-stage), passed outdoor where Pretty Lights are playing (and we get why they’re called pretty lights) even from the distance you could see it clearly. Watched Hardwell where I stumbled upon this hologram glass, so I kept it.



From there wanted to catch Dub FX who always sings on stage with his girlfriend called Flower Fairy, here at Dub FX we met a guy who was one of the aerialist from one of the tents around, he was with a friend who happened to an MC for the outdoor stage. After that there was Melbourne based neo-classical dark wave band Dead Can Dance, audience was swaying and enjoying their music. We went to DO LAB’s backstage and basically spent the night away dancing with new friends (yeah I also skipped Red Hot Chilli Peppers and Wu-Tang Clan for this)


There is this cool thing about Coachella where people of all genres come to enjoy music, from the young and the old. You can be in an indie tent and have hipsters dance beside you. Or see the Descendents and be surrounded by punks. Best feeling of all is when you’re all just gathering outdoor listening to the same kind of music, just enjoying yourself surrounded by hippies in their flower-crowns, rockabillies, hipsters, punks, Goths, young and old. United by their love of music.



–  There was an area called the DO LAB surrounded by big tents around it where people chill and relax underneath while watching aerialist hang and glide. There are also small tents where DJs played nonstop and the people partied there from day to night to day again – where the DJ enjoy keeping them hydrated by spraying water.

–  There’s a larger than live snail walking around all over the concert grounds, which was the artwork of Herakut. When it gets dark the thing lights up, this moving mural is something fun to come across too every now and then.


Words and photos by Icubelle



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