The lineup for Coachella is huge, so of course there are going to be bands that make you cock your head and say, “Who’s that?” A pleasant surprise might await if you happen to catch one of these bands, and that’s part of the serendipity of a huge festival with multiple stages with concurrent happenings. So go forth and take a chance, why don’t you? You may just discover the next Bloc Party. ~Lee Fullington
The Duke Spirit: Leila Moss may be tiny, but she can fucking belt it out. Heavy, throbbing, writhing rock ‘n’ roll. Forget sex on the beach; they’re totally sex in the desert.
Rob Dickinson: His cousin’s the iconic Bruce Dickinson from Iron Maiden. His former band, Catherine Wheel, had its heyday in the mid-’90s shoegazer boom. Solo? We’ll find out
The Rakes: More post-punk angular guitars to tear up the desert. This band comes all the way from East London with its rock ‘n’ roll urgency.
Nine Black Alps: This band is not Oasis, not the Stone Roses, not Doves, not Elbow, not Oceansize, not the Smiths, not Joy Division. But these guys are from Manchester and they do rock and they do like noise.
Section Quartet: Radiohead is at Bonneroo, but maybe we’ll get lucky and Section Quartet will give us its strings-only rendition of “Just.” As long as this band doesn’t go doing Metallica covers like that other string outfit, we’ll be on the right track.
Living Things: These guys have the most artfully arranged hair in rock ‘n’ roll at the moment. Pair that with a heavy post-Nirvana rock sound and they very well might seduce the desert revelers.
The Dears: If this band‘s blistering live record, Thank You Good Night Sold Out, is anything to go by, its blistering, pounding guitars are going to be magnetic and magical.
Dungen: Difficult? Pretty? Ethereal? Screeching? Swedish? Dungen very well could be the perfect soundtrack to a swelteringly hot and damaging day.
Be Your Own Pet: Sometimes bands with terrible names turn out to be really great. Sometimes they don’t. But these are punk-rock kids, so let’s give them the benefit of the doubt for now. They do have a lot of energy going for them, though.
Kristina Sky: Trance is still cool? I had no idea. Daytime in the desert in a tent? Not so sure how that’s going to work, if indeed that’s her timeslot and place.
Giant Drag: No, not Superdrag. Hopefully this duo’s name is a misnomer and its indie-pop set is anything but a drag.
Youth Group: These guys are Australian and, no, they’re not going to try and convert you to God. Just a great blend of indie, folk and pop.
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