TL;DR WARNING! Every act I saw this year, ranked from least enjoyed to most:
I thought I'd start things out on a positive note. It was a way, way better year for live music than recorded.
49. John Jackson @ Coachella
48. AWOL One @ El Rey
Sebastien Grainger was supposed to open but instead we got what I thought was Limp Bizkit.
47. Uffie @ Coachella
Everything wrong with music has a performance where everything that can go wrong does. +5 to Uffie for disappearing for 20 minutes and leaving a bunch of Soulja Boys to fill in for her.
46. Crayonsmith @ El Rey
45. Liars @ fucking everywhere
Hey Thom, what happened to epic openers like Pulp, Sigur Ros, Spiritualized, Beck, etc? Everywhere else got Modeselektor, Bat for Lashes, Grizzly Bear...
44. The Breeders @ Coachella
I caught a song, then decided my time was better spent in the shade socializing. I didn't even bother to come back out when I heard "Cannonball."
43. Stars @ Coachella
Fell asleep. The weakest link in the BSS-affiliates collective.
42. Fatboy Slim @ Coachella
Fake sets from washed-up DJ's FTW.
41. Gemma Hayes @ Santa Monica Civic
I don't remember much, since her set was only 15 minutes.
40. Dan Deacon @ Coachella
39. Death Cab for Cutie @ Coachella
Boring and my phone was stolen during this.
38. Parachutes @ Copley Symphony Hall
Sigur Ros lite.
37. Ssion @ Mayan
Interesting stage setup of cardboard flames.
36. The Morning Benders @ Avalon
I completely forgot I saw them so I can't really say.
35. Pacifika @ Hollywood Bowl
34. Lavender Diamond @ Wiltern
33. Spectrum @ Santa Monica Civic
32. Mum @ Coachella
31. Smoosh @ Wiltern
30. Holy Fuck @ Coachella
29. Fuck Buttons @ Wiltern
28. Supergrass @ Avalon
27. Gogol Bordello @ Coachella
26. Aphex Twin @ Coachella
25. Islands @ El Rey
Way better in 2006. They didn't seem very happy to be playing and the crowd didn't care about the new songs at all.
24. Tilly & the Wall @ Mayan
Lots of fun.
23. Vermillion Lies @ Troubadour
I just tried to listen to the songs on their myspace and never really did it, but they were a lot of fun live. Some would say gimmicky, and maybe so, but it was so much fun. WHAT'S IN THE BOX?!?
22. Love Grenades @ Echo
The singer stroked my face and held my hand. Seriously.
21. Goldfrapp @ Coachella
Sound problems made what could have been amazing great.
20. The Bird & the Bee @ Coachella
Wonderful way to start the day.
19. CSS @ Mayan
Still lots of silly, mindless fun.
18. Mogwai @ Wiltern
Good way to prepare the ears for My Bloody Valentine. No "Mogwai Fear Satan?"
17. Amanda Palmer @ Troubadour
2 hour sets in support of an upcoming solo album from which only half the songs were actually played and a ukulele cover of "Creep" FTW.
16. St. Vincent @ Coachella
Holy shit, she can really shred.
15. Battles @ Coachella
Hella short, but any longer and everyone would have had heart attacks.
14. Dresden Dolls @ Wiltern
"Two Headed Boy" FTW.
13. Metric @ Coachella
Always a good time.
12. Kraftwerk @ Coachella
So it seems most of the originals are dead or otherwise gone now, and they don't really do anything up there but press play, but still cool.
11. Feist @ Hollywood Bowl
10. Sharon Jones @ Hollywood Bowl
Attention, Amy Winehouse. This is what real soul sounds like.
9. The Verve @ Coachella
How the hell did Jack Johnson headline over the Verve? Only in American't.
8. Asobi Seksu @ Echo
After nearly four years of waiting, I finally get to see them. They were so good that I'm seriously considering catching both the LA and San Diego shows in March, assuming they play LA. Great way to spend Halloween.
7. The Cure @ the Troubadour
I will never say anything bad about myspace again. That is all.
6. My Bloody Valentine @ Santa Monica Civic
My ears are still ringing from the apocalypse. I'm told I must really be in love if I gave up a front row spot to go hang out with a girl at the back of the venue, but meeting them backstage made up for not puking or being puked on up front.
5. Roger Waters @ Coachella
The clearest sound I've ever heard at a show, especially at a festival. And it was surround sound. And don't forget the fireworks, flamethrowers, flying pigs, and laser recreation of the DSOTM album cover. Trippiest fucking trip ever, and that was before I bummed some weed.
4. Sigur Ros @ Copley Hall
Mind-blowing set coupled with an incredible setlist = perfection. Gobbledigook is the ultimate in super happy fun times. I still have some of that confetti.
3. Prince @ Coachella
Really took everyone to school. The most fun party one can have in the desert. A set that ended at 1:01am with the most intense "Let's Go Crazy", plus Morris Day & Jerome for "Jungle Love", and a cover of "Creep?" Legendary.
2. Portishead @ Coachella
I still can't believe I actually saw them.
1e. Radiohead @ Hollywood Bowl 1
I was a bit bummed that the show did not contain songs from the soundcheck like "new song", In Limbo, and the Idioteque with Hey Ya lyrics thrown in.
1d. Radiohead @ Ford Amphitheater
1c. Radiohead @ Cruzan Amphitheater
FIRST SHOW OF THE TOUR! First look at those crazy lights. And Bulletproof!
1b. Radiohead @ Santa Barbara Bowl
"Just cuz you're down in front, mate." *plays two notes* "It's a nice idea, though, I'll admit."
Thom pwned me.
1a. Radiohead @ Hollywood Bowl 2
First time hearing Talk Show Host (and my tenth show), Go Slowly, Cymbal Rush, still the only performance of Tell Me Why, and True Love Waits? Holy monk.