I'm not doing a wrap-up. takes too much work, don't really have anything new to say about all these bands I've all seen and written about two or three times already. Just some thoughts of an overall great weekend.
Really fun week out in Cali, but Coachella the festival was a pretty huge letdown. Way overcrowded, less open space, tents were overflowing, and the sound seemed to bleed in from the other stages much more than last year. That said, there were 6 acts that really made me happy to be there. In order of mindblowness:
Daft Punk Mogwai My Morning Jacket Atmosphere Walkmen Minus the Bear
DP was truly amazing. The Dance Tent, while pretty useless most of the time for non dance fans, was a really nice space. Massive, but really well executed. Mogwai was not on my must see list, but I was feeling really lightheaded and woozy waiting for Madonna, so headed to the foodcourt area to grab a snack, ran into some other friends and just stretched out on the grass and stared at the stars. So well executed. I'd like to goto one of those Webster shows, but I feel there's no way they could top that. MMJ was super-tight as well, even from back in the crowd where we were. They sounded perfect.
I usually hate live hip-hop, but I love Atmosphere. Half w/DJ, half full band. He just knows how to keep a show going, get a crowd into it without being overbearing and annoying. Really really impressed. I love seeing the Walkmen live, so they're always a highlight. They handled the daunting main stage very well. The new album is really really good too. Digging every song, but "All Hands and the Cook" might just be be my jam of the year. Finally, Minus the Bear was the first band I saw on Sunday and, while I couldn't stay for the whole thing, what I saw was really great. Looking forward to Friday night at Warsaw.
Everything else was just OK to good. White Rose Movement was really really bad. Off the top of my head, that was it that I couldn't stand. The second outdoor stage was the place to be all weekend, as evidenced that 4 of my 6 favorite acts were on there. The tents were dreadful. The biggest problem was, while there were lots of good bands, few were really must-see. So the tents were packed and the stages were comfortably attended. I don't ever remember not being able to get into a tent during the day last year if I showed up when they went on. If the fest wants the crowd that comes for the whole day back next year, they'd be wise to slash the capacity like some of the other fests have this year to make it a better experience. Last year I was wowed as to how smoothly everything ran. This year was a total mess in comparison.
Aside from the actual fest, it's just so nice to be out there. We had a beautiful house, stayed with some great friends I usually don't get to hang out with for this extended a time, and just forgot about the internet, New York, My day job and all that for one weekend. It was a real vacation, which I haven't gotten to take in a long time. Loved it.
5 Night Vacation in Bali (Air and Hotel) for $0 ($100 deposit)
Asian Affairs Holidays
is offering a 5 night "Romantic Bali" package for $0! The package
includes round trip airfare on Singapore Airlines and 5 nights at a
5-star hotel with breakfast. Looks to be valid from most US cities (we
have confirmed Los Angeles, Chicago, New York, and Philadelphia) from
now though March, 2006. Book a single bed with one person, and you will get the $0 rate.
Note that they charge a higher fare (about $90) to depart from certain
cities, and they will immediately charge your card a $100 refundable
Holy Shit! I clicked through and the website was completely jammed up. After patiently waiting for page after page to load up, I managed to finally get all the way through and make a reservation for the week of January 9th for the Grand total of $0.00.
I had this glorious plan of telling everybody I knew to do the same. We'd all take a week off at the beginning of January, go to Bali for free, run amuck, etc. etc.
Of course, by the time my resy went through, the website figured out what was going on and closed the loophole. So now I'm going to Bali by myself in January. It's hard to complain...but this wasn't part of the plan.
There's still a chance the company may bail on me, since they need to email me back in a couple days to confirm the itinerary and all, which would give them a final out. I'll be sure to update how this turns out.
On the flight out to LA last week, I dozed off for a bit, and when I woke up, I looked out the window and found myself flying over the most beautiful and bizarre landscape. I can't for the life of me figure out where I was. It's a desert landscape with a solitary snow-capped mountain standing beside a dark blue river snaking by. Any idea where I was? I took more pictures after the jump...
I'm off to sunnier skies. LA for the next few days, then down to Coachella Friday evening. Anyone else gonna be out there, feel free to shoot me an e-mail, lemme know what goes on. Anyone staying in NYC, be sure to check out Stars tonight, Adam Green tomorrow, The Wedding Present with (my new favorite) Crystal Skulls on Friday, Q and not U on Saturday and DFA '79 at Mercury Lounge Sunday. I would surely try and make it to some of these shows if I were around. Take care.