Coachella Wk2 04/19-04/21
Dave Matthews Band 08/23-08/24
Coachella WK1 04/11-04/13 ---- 2014
I'm just happy to see I'm not the only one who left Coachella this year somewhat disappointed. I mean.... where to start? There were plenty of negatives to look forward to going into it (let's be real, costs are ALWAYS going to high when people are trapped somewhere for an extended weekend, and how the hell can you expect anything less than suffocation when you bring expectedly great bands together like that?), but this year left me wondering why I was there. If GoldenVoice doesn't care, then why the fuck should I? Two hour + wait times on showers, walking a mile or so each way from tent to venue multiple times daily, walking at least that much to claim my camping space with all my shit in hand in the first place, standing in line for "free" water at the only place where water can be found without pulling green out (or was I paying for that in the three hundred or so dollars that I spent on that flimsy bracelet? Though it does have a super amazing security magnet in it like an anti-theft device or something James Bond about to blow my wrist off or give me cancer... not sure which I prefer yet, check back), sub-par Headliners (Muse and Gorillaz? Don't get me wrong, they both have some pretty cool sounds, and I dug on some of that Gorillaz show.... but where the fuck is Bob Dylan when you need to define headline act? Oh, sorry, he's busy realizing that he's not going to play some shithole that would rather let people suffer from heat strokes while waiting in line for a drink of water or a shower (and yes, it happened) than to cover your bases and make sure everyone has the wonderful time they fucking paid for!), no room to breath with the numbers of people (and I'm not sure if I'm the only one who noticed this, and I'm sure it's not the only time it's happened this weekend.... but Spoon was packed out, tons of people. Pavement followed, and was a morgue! The point being that they need to coordinate the music in a more appropriate way so that a band on the main stage isn't playing to a Gobi sized audience while every other stage is getting fucking swamped and paying the price for poor planning). I've probably missed a thing or two, but what more is there to say? Who's paying my way into the show next year? Not me. Not me.
You may have come the closest to concisely describing what some previous attendee’s may have been feeling this year (I'm one). A couple of postings above wrote off a person’s feeling a change in the aura as a result “being old”, i.e. being out of touch with change (s). This was on my mind as well for a good portion of the day yesterday. The funny thing is that I’ve attended 8 Coachella’s and have frequented concerts and DJ set over the past two years and had never made to be felt as old until this weekend.
There were extra people this year. Other than the cluster fuck with parking, maneuvering around the crowd was not an issue. Same number of days, same tents, similar set times, same food, parking, etc. I’m kind of leaning on the idea that crowd is what made me feel out of place. People talking loudly over Gil Scott Heron, people jumping up and down in little clusters to announce “we’re here”, and the consistent and relentless groups of people holding each other’s hand plowing their way through an area where there was no room.
The tents full of trash and bottles. I’ve never attended Glastonbury, but it seemed like it this weekend. Good music and vibes was replaced by people and the things they did at the festival. My only refuge in humanity was at sets that the ogres did not appreciate it, such as Corinne Bailey and Charlotte Gainsbourg. Not sure if it was the stage conflicts, the recognition of the festival itself, or the increase in attendees, but the love (Kanye’s voice from 2Many DJ’s set: The love…the mother fuckin love) was lacking. They say manners are the thread of society. I spent the weekend with a bunch of monkeys who eat spaghetti with their feet, and are proud of it.
I am still not sure how to describe this year: but like yourself; I am very protective of this festival and what it has given me. I am just trying to put my feelings into words.
2 oz blended whiskey
Juice of 1/2 lemon
1/2 tsp powdered sugar
1/2 slice lemon
Shake blended whiskey, juice of lemon, and powdered sugar with ice and strain into a whiskey sour glass. Decorate with the half-slice of lemon, top with the cherry, and serve.
It did seem extra crowded, but I've had worse years as far as rude attendees.
Some things were better. I actually found the scheduling fairly decent. Not as many major bleed overs like last years fleet foxes vs. Thievery Corporation, etc...
I thought that the middle and lower card acts were maddeningly good (Do I actually want to get there at noon?!?!?!)
Best improvement was the camera work on the two outdoor stages. If you were far away, combined with the extra speakers made the distance a little more bearable.
Parking and traffic were an f'ing disaster compared with previous years. It would have been much better with no parking attendants or police. They forced everyone into he same roads for no reason. They made you drive up and down full rows over and over again because of a lack of training (i hope).
Checking bags twice cause huge delays on friday. Wristband distribution must be fixed. I'd go the day before if they let me just to get a wrist band. I don't care. Just know that everything outside of the gates on friday was done badly. Fix it.
The scaled back burlesque show should have been moved since it was so confined this year... it served mainly as a bleedover to other acts because you couldn't experiencve it as well as previous years. Would have been more appropriate where the old dome was.
The spinning mirror wheel, fire tornado, light cube are awesome. the sculptures were ok this year, but the art side was a little weak this year. It seems like this has been on a general downturn the last few years. At some point either do it or pull the plug. It is starting to feel half ass when someone puts some christmas light on a short bus so they can have a private spot at sahara.
In general they have fixed a lot of things from the past, but the outside the gates stuff on friday was a huge step back. If it had been hot, there would have been riots. It was worse than 2004 when they ended spraying us (gently) with fire hoses to keep us cool while we were waiting to get in.
Oh yeah... my idea... take those balloons and make a long string from each seachlign and join them in a big wobbly dome over the entire grounds.
Everyone complaining about the showers should have taken advantage of in's and out's. Why do you think GV booked MGMT? So you could have a chance to shower without the obnoxious crowds, that's why.
This was my 1st one and yeah there were problems (shitty people pushing through, the art, the worst damn breakfast burrito I've ever eaten, Gorillaz) but there were a lot of good things going for it (the kick ass Indian burrito, in and outs, the weather). There are always gonna be a higher amount of assholes every year because it takes time for assholes to discover things to ruin. There will be more next year unless they book more indie or lesser known bands.
I didn't wait in line to get in longer than 5 minutes every time. Maybe it was because I came in the back entrance but I had little to no problems. I never waited for the showers longer than 45 minutes because I got up at 7:30 and showered 1st then went back to my tent and slept. I thought that the crowd for Tiesto was one of the more polite large crowds. NO pushing and people were mostly dancing and having a good time. The smaller acts (Fever Ray, MuteMath, etc.) were to the real winners and really impressed me. The headliners were a little odd but Muse and Jay Z (I didn't see Jay-Z but I never heard any bad reviews) kicked ass. I had a good time. Sorry for the rambling....
I've seen things you people wouldn't believe. Attack ships on fire off the shoulder of Orion. I watched moonbeams glitter in the dark near the Tannhauser gate. All those moments will be lost in time... like tears in the rain...
The WORST part of the weekend was the people who actually showed up @Noon thursday and were told the gates weren't gonna open til at least 2pm...Why is this GV??...That 24 million u pocketed from ticket sales isn't enough to properly staff compentent security??...Morons!...Look for bombs and glass QUICKLY and let us the hell in, u cost us a few hours of meeting people and partying!...Otherwise GREAT weekend though...
I've been attending the festival every year since 2002. My favorite year was 2008. My least favorite year was this year because there were too many people and the art was underwhelming compared to previous years. That being said, I still had a good time.
There were plenty of things to comlpain about, lack of art, too many people, bad handling of parking and ticket gates, etc.
But there was plenty of good to talk about, still has the great location, great music, still plenty of awesome people to meet, great food if you know where to go, etc.
I've been going since 2002 and honestly the first day I was a little downtrodden when I sat in my car so long and then the line to get in; but once I was inside everything turned around.
All this being said, I'm just glad I didn't bring any newbies this year. I don't want them to have an incorrect view of the total Coachella picture.
I've been to Coachella several times before, but I agree with what others have said...something felt "off" this year. While it wasn't enough of a disappointment to keep me from attending in the future, I hope GV is able to recapture the vibe Coachella used to have. One thing I noticed was the amount of trash laying/blowing around...several times on Sunday I had to wipe ketchup/god knows what off my feet and ankles where a paper plate had blown over and stuck to me. Ugh.
But by far the most annoying thing was all the girls running around with those belly dancing belts on that make a huge jingling racket. I am all for self expression but when your choice of attire for a MUSIC FESTIVAL impacts the listening experience of those around you, perhaps you should rethink your choice. I did not come to hear you dance. I came to hear the music.
Regardless, I had a great time and am definitely looking forward to next year. I'll just have to remember to bring wet wipes for when I'm assaulted by blowing trash, and steer clear of the herds of belly dancers.