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Coachella 2009 30/30 Initiative: Coachella Cram Session

Posted by Amoebite, April 16, 2009 06:43pm | Post a Comment
127 Bands, 5 Stages, 3 Days and 1 Mean Sunburn.

"Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival - April 17-19th, 2009 or: How I Learned To Stop Worrying and Find 30 Reasons To Love a Weekend in the Desert."

- By Scott Butterworth

Artists 26-30: No Age, TRAV$DJ-AM, Throbbing Gristle, Mastodon and Shepard Fairey

Ladies and gentleman, we are on the eve of my favorite weekend of the year, the Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival. If the past twenty five days of my Coachella blog and the following video hasn't convinced you to go to Coachella...then I'm not sure what will. But I hope you've at least found something you liked along the way. If you haven't read the last 25 band features, then you've got some homework to do, but for the last five band profiles of this 30 Coachella Bands in 30 Days blog, I'm going to throwback to an old college tradition...the "cram session." So grab a Redbull...and let's do this!


Artist #26 -  No Age:
No Age
No Age, another band from the Sup Pop mafia, the Seattle label that's throwing its weight (and talent) around this year's Coachella festival, is one my most anticipated performances of the weekend. Their debut album Nouns was, without a doubt, in my top three albums of 2008. No Age is a lo-fi fuzz/art rock duo, with one member on guitar, one on drums. But don't expect the White Stripes...They sound more like Sonic Youth. If you want to be able to say to the kids, "...I was there when (insert legendary band and time/place) happened....", buy this album now and go see them play live...anywhere!

Continue reading...

Coachella 2009 30/30 Initiative: The Gaslight Anthem

Posted by Amoebite, April 14, 2009 02:08pm | Post a Comment
127 Bands, 5 Stages, 3 Days and 1 Mean Sunburn.

"Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival - April 17-19th, 2009 or: How I Learned To Stop Worrying and Find
30 Reasons To Love a Weekend in the Desert."

- By Scott Butterworth

Coachella LineupThe Gaslight Anthem

Day #25 - Artist #25 - The Gaslight Anthem:
The Gaslight Anthem
I think what I love about The Gaslight Anthem is that they take me back to summer days spent with my friends on Pier 30/32 on the beautiful San Francisco Bay watching our favorite punk rock bands at the annual Warped Tour. But I hate to call them a "Warped Tour" band; that label just feels so limiting. The same issue was brought up in Pitchfork.com's review of their second album, The '59 Sound, that slapped the dreaded "Sophomore Slump" across the band's face with its release in August 2008. Pitchfork's notoriously cynical reviewers expressed the essence of the band in the exact way I felt, but didn't know how to describe: "The Gaslight Anthem might work the Warped Tour mall-punk circuit, but they're not of it. Instead, they belong to an older breed of punk band, one we don't see too much anymore: Social Distortion, Alkaline Trio, fellow Jersey knuckleheads Bouncing Souls. These bands might be emotional, but they're about a million miles removed fromThe Gaslight Anthem - The '59 Sound emo, especially in the way that term gets tossed around now."

Coachella 2009 30/30 Initiative: Tinariwen

Posted by Amoebite, April 13, 2009 11:43pm | Post a Comment
127 Bands, 5 Stages, 3 Days and 1 Mean Sunburn.

"Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival - April 17-19th, 2009 or: How I Learned To Stop Worrying and Find 30 Reasons To Love a Weekend in the Desert."

- By Scott Butterworth


Coachella Lineup     Tinariwen

Day #24 - Artist #24 - Tinariwen:

It doesn't fail! Tonight is the second night in a row that I have been in bad mood, or a stressed mood or an exhausted mood or any combination of undesirable moods. And as soon as I press play on Tinariwen's recent album, Aman Iman: Water Is Life, my mood instantly takes a 180 degree turn. I have plenty of go-to albums to put me in a good mood or get me excited or motivate me, but this album physically woke me up...instantly! What normally takes a cup of coffee an hour or
Tinariwenso to do, Aman Iman: Water Is Life does in a matter of seconds.

"Tinariwen is a Tuareg group that performs in the Middle Eastern/African style Tishoumaren, similar to artists like Ali Farka Toure or Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan; [they] sing mostly in the French and Tamashek languages." I consider myself to be a pretty cultured person...but I'm going to be honest; I have no idea what that description means. But what I do know is that they formed in Mali in 1982 and have released music for 18 years, circulating locally in Africa. The music had a political soul of rebellion and became a voice for the Taureg people, eventually becoming banned in Algeria and Mali. It wasn't until 2001 that Tinariwen gained attention from the Western world with the release of The Radio Tisdas Sessions (2001). Their most recent album, Aman Iman: Water Is Life, released in 2007, introduces us to songs that were actually written as far back as the band's origins in the early '80s, but still sound as if they were born yesterday.
Tinariwen - Aman Iman: Water Is Life
There's just something different about this band's music than what I'm used to with Western popular music (and I would put almost every other band at Coachella into that category). They are a magical band, from a magical land. Tinariwen's music feels like it's made because it has to be, and for no other reason. The album title Water Is Life alludes to the band's foundation of necessity and Tinariwen is the water that their Saharan Desert lacks. If the Sahara Desert is a metaphor for my night, coffee is not the "water" that my soil needs...I think it needs Tinariwen.

Coachella 2009 30/30 Initiative: Conor Oberst

Posted by Amoebite, April 11, 2009 04:17pm | Post a Comment
127 Bands, 5 Stages, 3 Days and 1 Mean Sunburn.

"Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival - April 17-19th, 2009 or: How I Learned To Stop Worrying and Find 30 Reasons To Love a Weekend in the Desert."

- By Scott Butterworth


Coachella Lineup  Conor Oberst

Day #23 - Artist #23 - Conor Oberst and the Mystic Valley Band:
Conor Oberst
It's not the most recognizable name...yet it sits suspiciously high at the top of the Coachella lineup for Friday April 17, 2009, just under icons Paul McCartney, Morrissey, Franz Ferdinand, and Leonard Cohen.

Conor Oberst, born and raised in Omaha, Nebraska, started his professional music career in 1993 at age 13. His first significant project was forming the band Norman Bailer (which later became The Faint), while he was only 14 years old! After sharing this info with my roommate, he exclaimed, "That makes complete sense now. I've been wondering for years Conor Oberstwhy The Faint was his backing band during his Coachella performance in 2005!"

Coachella 2009 30/30 Initiative: My Bloody Valentine

Posted by Amoebite, April 7, 2009 11:04pm | Post a Comment
127 Bands, 5 Stages, 3 Days and 1 Mean Sunburn.

"Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival - April 17-19th, 2009 or: How I Learned To Stop Worrying and Find 30 Reasons To Love a Weekend in the Desert."

- By Scott Butterworth
Coachella Lineup     My Bloody Valentine

Day #22 - Artist #22 - My Bloody Valentine:
My Bloody Valentine
My Bloody Valentine formed in 1984 in Dublin, Ireland, and spent a few years of metamorphosis working out the kinks with lineup changes and varying musical output before developing their innovative sound. It wasn't until 1988 that the "caterpillar" became a "butterfly," with the band releasing a pair of EPs and their first album Isn't Anything on Creation Records (future home to Oasis). My Bloody Valentine became the torchbearers of the Shoegaze style of music popular in the late '80s/early '90s that sent sparks into the alternative revolution of the 1990s. Unfortunately, by 1993 the band would unravel into a "lost period" of scrapped recording sessions by songwriter Kevin Shields (similar to Brian Wilson/Beach Boys and Axl Rose/Guns N' Roses) that lasted until the band's reunion in 2008. 

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