Day 2 of Coachella was supposed to be happening right now.
Yes, it’s rescheduled for October, which is better than a full-blown cancelation. But what if you really wanted to go now, when the weather is much
nicer more hellish? Well there’s nothing against listening to songs by the would-be performers at an irresponsibly high volume all weekend!
Turn up the heat in your home, remove most of your clothes, add a pinch of body glitter, and increase the humidity. I suggest freeing all the hot water from your water heater.
Here, I’ll get you started.
Chicano Batman — “Freedom is Free”
Friday would have been a really good day, featuring acts like Princess Nokia, King Gizzard and the Lizard Wizard, and Run the Jewels. But for my money, the best non-headliner would have been Chicano Batman.
An underappreciated neo-psychedelic soul band out of Los Angeles, the well-dressed quartet kills it at festivals. I would know; they were one of my favorites at Outside Lands 2018, where they were nice enough to give an interview to my illustrious editor Mr. Gokhman. If they come back to Indio in October you should absolutely make it a point to catch their set.
Rage Against the Machine — “Bulls On Parade”
Friday night was to be the big blowout return of Rage Against the Machine.
Prophets of Rage was good, don’t get me wrong. Chuck D is a legend. But Rage was supposed to be back! Zack de la Rocha and all! They were the chosen ones who had returned to save us from the aspiring fascist lunatic whose presidency they tried to warn us about way back in 1999! Then they were going to come to Oakland for two shows, at least one of which I was going to attend!
But instead we’re stuck at home because of a stupid plague.
Carly Rae Jepsen — “Call Me Maybe”
Not gonna lie, Coachella’s Saturday lineup was going to be a bit too… hip for me. You know, too with it.
I’m old is what I’m saying, and Coachella is mostly music for youths.
That said, I’m a sucker for this song and Carly Ray Jepsen was going to play it earlier in the day. That I can get behind. And not just because in the music video she washes the car in a white shirt like she was an extra in a Whitesnake video from the ’80s.[Gokhman note: I considered switching this out for one of Jepsen’s terrific newer songs, from E•MO•TION or Dedicated, but Willis is truly rooted in the past. This song is all him].
Danny Elfman — “Gratitude”
Yeah, that Danny Elfman. The guy who composed the soundtracks for all those movies and, most importantly, the theme song for “The Simpsons.”
He was gonna play Coachella.
Look, I don’t know. Maybe he has a new album out or something, I don’t really want to check. But if I was there I would absolutely check out his set to see how ’80s it was going to get all up in there. Maybe I would be pleasantly surprised, but at the very least I would have been confused, and what more could I want?
Lil Nas X — “Rodeo”
Remember Lil Nas X? It was only last year when he was suddenly and inexplicably the biggest star in the world, but since March lasted for more than 20 years you may have forgotten about him.
Well Coachella was booked in the Before Time so they brought in Lil Nas X.
Can we talk about this music video for a second, though? It’s so confused! It starts with a “Saw” parody, but then instead of Jigsaw it’s a vampire? And Lil Nas X becomes a vampire? But then Nas—who I will henceforth refer to as Big Nas to distinguish them—shows up and he’s Morpheus from “The Matrix?”
Did neither Lil Nas nor Big Nas ever see a “Saw” movie or “The Matrix” to know there are no vampires in either one? Was everyone else just too polite to tell them? Is it a meta-commentary on… something?
Please answer my questions in the comments. They’re not rhetorical.
Fatboy Slim — “Right Here, Right Now”
Fatboy Slim was supposed to play Sunday!
First off, I’m glad he still exists. I haven’t heard from or thought about Fatboy Slim in ages. But he’s got a nostalgic place in my heart, because I listened to a CD of Halfway Between the Gutter and the Stars many, many times in the early ’00s while fixing computers during my brief but glorious IT career.
Second, I would have been curious whether anyone who went to Coachella was even old enough to remember Fatboy Slim except that he had that video where Christopher Walken danced on the walls. After all, that was, sigh, 20 years ago.
On second thought, maybe I’m better off just listening at home.
Follow editor Daniel J. Willis and tweet column ideas to him at Twitter.com/BayAreaData.