Sorry to keep you waiting this many days to update about Saturday and Sunday’s events, but I have had neither the time nor energy to deal with it til now.
So, Saturday was truly the marathon Coachella day for the crew I was with; we managed to get up at a decent hour, grab some breakfast and head over to the Polo Fields at about 2pm. We had already missed the Institubes DJs, Surkin and Para one, but we got there just in time for Kavinsky. The crowd was still sparse, but it built up over the course of the next hour as he threw down his brand of dark, 80’s tinged techno. Imagine Giorgio Moroder playing with an Atari 2600 in the midst of a bad shroom trip. We then went and grabbed ourselves some beer and lunch and attempted to go see a bit of MGMT at the Gobi tent, but it was packed and overflowing. Having no desire to stand in the sun outside of the tent 75 yards away from the stage, we said fuck it and went back to the dance tent to await the coming of the German Electro monster known as Boys Noize. I had never seen him play before and I was amazed. He absolutely shredded, and considering it was still the middle of the day, the tent was packed. He played this one song none of us had ever heard before, this big room-destroying tune that seriously had the crowd marching and screaming. It was intense. Needing an ear-break, we sat down and enjoyed Erol Alkan’s set from the back corner of the tent, aided by some fruit smoothies (and vodka). After Erol was Hot Chip, who played the dance tent with their full band playing nonstop through the hour like a DJ set. The place was packed and the vibe was amazing; everybody smiling, dancing, singing (“I am Ready, I am Ready for the Floor…”). Superb. Went and grabbed some organic goodies from the food stands, and some malted goodies from the beer tent before sitting in the corner of the main beer gardens to mellow out and watch Kraftwerk. They weren’t too exciting, but nice and spacey and perfect for the sunset. We checked out Mark Ronson’s set briefly, which was cool because his full band continued bringing up new outside singers for almost every song. Ricky Wilson from the Kaiser Chiefs, Jamie Reynolds from the Klaxons, and even Kenna (who is a R&B/pop singer I have worked with at my studio) all came up to sing while Ronson played guitar, smoked cigarettes, and basically looked like a cool motherfucker. The last two bands of the night were the most hyped, and both at the main stage. Portishead, who is just releasing their their 3rd album (after like 10 years) was reaally great. They played a bunch of the fan favorites of of their first album Dummy, and Beth Gibbons’ voice was just gorgeous. Next up was Prince, who played for almost 2 hours and was absolutely incredible. He has so much energy, he is amazing on guitar, and has so much swagger; he is truly a great entertainer. He brought out Sheila E and Morris Day to play with him, and though at times the set did slow when they played some gospel-style shit, they rocked through a 7 minute version of “Little Red Corvette” that had people in the 15,000 strong crowd singing at the top of their lungs. fantastic (though it would have been better if I hadnt had to pee the entire set. thank god for gatorade bottles.)
After 11 hours of festival-ing in the brutal desert sun, we did what any sensible people would do, which was of course continuing drinking and partying until the wee hours of the morning. (Sleep is for the weak.) We arose around 2pm, ate some chicken wings, had some pineapple and gin smoothies, had our EMT friends give us some saline IV drips to kill our hangovers (seriously) and headed back to the show at about 430p.
Like the past two days, our main desire Sunday was to stay in the dance tent. When we got there Booka Shade were playing live on an electronic drum set and a rack of synthesizers and sequencers; very cool, groovy and fun. Wasn’t really feeling Danny Tenaglia’s set next, so we managed to meet up with an old friend of ours (who gave us VIP wristbands) and went to grab some food and cocktails.
The remainder of the lineup in the tent that night was absolutely ridiculous if you are into the type of Electro that my friends and I listen to. Modeselektor, Simian Mobile Disco, and Chromeo all (in a row) absolutely destroyed the crowd (which was growing larger by the minute). Luckily the VIP bar was directly outside the tent, so we were able to run in between sets and gobble down drinks (or in Micah’s case, jump/fall over the fence, be welcomed by a round of applause, and then gobble down cocktails). Justice was the headliner of the night, and the only act playing anywhere on the grounds at that time. We had an excellent spot staked out to dance, and dance we did. The curtain pulls back and there are these stacks of Marshall cabinets 5 tall on either side of this platform bearing their trademark glowing cross. Their ominous opener “Genesis” starts and people just start going apeshit. It was incredible, definitely one of the best sets I have ever seen, just tearing through all their songs, remixes, and a couple choice classic electro/disco cuts…outstanding.
After the show we made it back to the house, drank and hung out in the hot tub for a few hours and passed out. The next morning was extremely brutal and the drive back to civilization was extremely difficult, but all in all it was an amazing weekend.
Though my ears are still ringing.
Uh Oh. We are about three weeks from the release of Tha Carter III and a week or two ago I wondered if there was going to be another single before it dropped in addition to “Lollipop.” Well the good news is that there is a second single, but the bad news is that it really is not very good. The song is called “A Millie” and without really splitting hairs here, it’s just pretty weak. It doesn’t sound like a song at all. It sounds just like a mixtape freestyle. Now I am a HUGE proponent of Wayne’s freestyles because they are usually pretty tight. But this song sounds like Wayne just mails it in. It does not even have the positives that “Lollipop” had, which was a dope beat and a catchy hook. “A Millie” plays the same repetitive beat over and over again, with no production value or creativity. Plus, the song is actually one of Wayne’s weaker offerings, even as a freestyle. With the exception of a couple cool lines, for the most part this song is forgettable and unextraordinary. The best part of the song is the second verse which is provided by Cory Gunz (not on all versions). Not good Weezy…I’m actually starting to get pretty nervous that the album is not going to be very good. I hope this isn’t prophetic about things to come and I am really surprised that this was even chosen to be a single. The lead single off of Tha Carter II was “Fireman” and that song is STILL HOT. Maybe I am being too critical so you can click here to listen to the track. This week I will bring you back to a better time where Lil Wayne made sense. This song is called “Gossip” and it is off of Tha Leak that came out around December. Click here for the song.
Drag my name through the mud, I come out clean/cast away stones, I won’t even blink/A gun is not a math problem, I won’t even think/just leave you dead like the mink, under my sink/don’t believe in me, don’t believe me/I graduated from hungry and made it to greedy/my flow is like pasta, take it and eat it/but I’ma need cheese if I’m bakin a ziti/you niggas want beef, I want a steak and a weed beat/lost in Amsterdam or Jamaica where weed be/hard body nigga, just takin it easy/all about my paper, bout my paper like Eazy/why do rappers, why do rappers lie to fans/why do rappers, lots of rappers, lie like actors/cut the motherfuckin cameras/cut they checks and tell them fuck they props/and when you see them, tell them I am Hip Hop – And I’m not dead I’m alive
Stoked to have both my laptop and wireless at our rented Desert Oasis out here in sunny Indio, though sadly i forgot my camera’s USB cord so I cannot upload any of the pics I took today.
We didnt get into the show today until about 4 or so, after having gotten into town, dropping our stuff off at the house and watching a friend of mine power his way through two salads at Subway. The first act we caught was Cut Copy, my current favorite band. They were rad. Excellent vibe throughout, despite the heat. They even fucked up like once or twice with their timing, but were always able to bring it back and get locked back into the groove. Aside from a few excursions around the polo fields for beer and food, we really stayed over on the side of the festival with the small stages/tents.
Ran into Busy P, Murs, and SebastiAn walking around, that was cool. Checked out a bit of Diplo’s set in the Sahara tent; it was really cool but his style is so all over the place it was actually kinda hard to get into it.
Santogold on the other hand fucking ripped. She had a really short set (she doesn’t even have an album out yet), but she sounded great, had a ton of energy, some awesome backup dancers, and overall looked like she was really enjoying herself. Rad.
The highlight for me was Aphex Twin. I have been into this crazy fucker’s music for many years, and he NEVER plays out ANYWHERE, let alone in the States. I really didnt know what to expect (other than to have my mind blown). When we walked into the tent, he had already been on for about 15 minutes, and he was playing cheesy disco house, sitting behind a laptop. ?????? I knew something was up, that he had to be fucking with everyone…and that he was…
Disco house went into minimal techno, which started fluctuating in speed and intensity and started getting really (for the lack of a better word) Gnarly. Next thing you know, he is throwing down 160bpm hard acid techno and all the E’d out ravers are started to look really uncomfortable. i was drooling. From this he somehow segued into this insane drill n bass and just chaotic mess of sounds. Hard grinding synths and massive rumbling bass, sped up and process breakbeats…insanity. For the rest of the hour he played he just kept dropping these insane tracks that literally had me jumping up and down, waving my hat and screaming at people. To top it off, during this storm of the most evil-sounding chaotic techno I have ever heard, a group of dancers all wearing animal costumes (dog, bunny, cow, etc.) come out on stage and start dancing around around the turntables. I was laughing hysterically and I swear i saw some kids on Acid in the corner crying their eyes out. It was glorious.
The only real bummer of the day was Spank Rock. I was super-stoked to see Naeem and his crew play, and it was evident after the first 15 mins that something weird was up. His DJs, Devlin & Darko spun some classic disco and house jams by themselves for a while, and then Amanda Blank came out for a few songs. After about 10 more minutes she let everyone know that Spank got sick today and wasnt going to be able to perform. fuuuuccccccckkkkkkk
We watched her for five more minutes and then hit the road.
Tomorrow is going to be a loooooong day…so many acts to see, parties to visit, beers to drink, hippies to mock. Peace Out!
-Dirty Desert Bastard
Athletes, for all intensive purposes, are liars. They lie all of the time. They lie when we know what they really mean (“it’s not about the money, I felt that I could have a better shot at winning a championship in insert name of team that hasn’t seen the playoffs in a decade“). They lie for endorsements, for their image and for their respective teams and leagues (“everyone played hard tonight, we win as a team and lose as a team” – translation, “if that dumbass would have hit all those open shots I gave him tonight we would not be having this conversation”). That is why it is so utterly refreshing when an athlete decides to be brutally honest. And why it is also so disappointing when the media subsequently vilifies them for it instead of really examining the issue.
Today on the Michael Irvin radio show, Dallas Mavericks forward Josh Howard admits that *gasp* he smokes weed in the off season. The same Josh Howard that has been a starter on one of the best teams in basketball the last 5 years, averaged 20 points and 9 boards this season, and made $9.5 mil this year. He spoke candidly about the subject and mentioned what the majority of any non-dense basketball fan knows, that he is not alone in his recreational activity. I applaud Howard for at least being honest about a something that can have a negative stigma attached to it, yet I would venture that a large percentage of the population does or has done. When asked what he will do when the media undoubtedly attacks him and blames any poor play on this statement, he responded by acknowledging that it simply would not be true but he is prepared for that backlash. Dude averaged almost a double-double on a team where he is the 3rd option. It clearly does not adversely affect his play, and he has never failed a drug test so why is this such a big story?
The easy answer is that it is not. But of course the media were all up on this like flies on shit. He was getting blasted from every angle saying that it is illegal, it is irresponsible, how could he possibly say that many other players in the league blaze in the summer time. Nevermind the fact that in 2001 ex-NBA star Charles Oakley said in his estimation 60% of the league smokes. Or in a 2005 study they found that easily at least 30% of the league smokes regularly. Lets not forget that I doubt you know someone who doesn’t smoke regularly or at least smoked a few times in college. It is asinine for people to so blatantly attacking this guy for responding truthfully to a question. Should he probably not have said it, sure, but you can’t straight up label him a villain like King of the Blowhards Stephen A. Smith did on SportsCenter. (Have I mentioned that I think everything that comes out of Stephen A. Smith’s mouth is complete garbage and if he never “analyzed” another basketball game for the rest of my life I might be smarter?)
Way to be true to yourself Josh, if you want to get a little lifted after an 82 game season plus playoffs on your own time, by all means go for it. Fuck you hypocritical media trying to act all high and mighty that this is such a bad thing, or it is so unfair to acknowledge something that only a blind, deaf and dumb person would think doesn’t exist. I love how the talking heads are saying this is so irresponsible because so much of the league is black and so many of its patrons are white and this sets such a bad tone for things. Give me a break and think about something a little bigger than image and the bottom line for a second. Raise your hand if you would be surprised to know that your favorite athlete smoked pot every once in awhile. Wow, no hands raised, imagine that. IF David Stern fines him for this that is only perpetuating a problem instead of rationally and intelligently discussing a legitimate issue not only in professional sports but all aspects of society.
trailer for the new Soulwax/2 Many DJs tour DVD
in other news, I’m going to Coachella in the morning. I will return Monday sunburned, hungover, filthy, with ringing ears. I live for this shit. 🙂
I know what you are thinking, that headline makes no sense. But then you need to remember that I never lead you astray when it comes to things that are awesome. I’m like the ambassador of awesomeness. Without “Me” it is really just “aweso.” Insert any other statement that demonstrates my staggering levels of awesome. Now I forgot what I was talking about…oh yeah, have you ever wanted to see the exact graphical correlation between money and problems? Do you understand the ways you can “get it in the morning” better with a flow chart or other visual aids? Maybe Venn Diagrams or bar graphs, or pie charts are more your cup of tea. If this sounds like something you would be interested I have the best thing ever for you.
Some genius (with waaaaaay too much time on their hands) has properly graphed, charted, and statistically demonstrated rap music. I swear to you that clicking on this link is 100% totally worth it. I personally enjoyed the “Correlation between Freek and Leek Based on Contemporary African American Nomenclature.” The results are staggering. What is even better is that if you are familiar with the songs, the graphs totally make sense. This is my favorite thing that I have seen that keeps me from studying the stuff that will eventually pay my bills ever. (thanks Dasha)
UPDATE: if you click the individual graphs it takes you to a youtube video of what song the graph relates to. One more reason why this is the coolest thing ever.
In honor of Uppity’s post I’d like to add a classic cable access show, “Let’s Paint, Exercise, and Blend drinks.” It’s pure genius and the gang members calling in is priceless. Who knew crips watch local tv?
In honor of the NBA playoffs getting started I have decided to pay homage to some of the leagues past, uh, greats. Actually the only thing great about this post is this awesome picture. For those of you who don’t know, Manute Bol has been the tallest (and arguably skinniest and most awkward) player in the league’s history. Muggsy Bogues on the other hand, was the league’s shortest player. (note: I conducted zero research to back up these facts and am just operating under the general understanding that I’m a genius and the Gospel of TurtleDog is infallible). The third member of the band appears to be a stuffed hippo or some other cuddly looking creature. I don’t know if he ever played in the NBA, if he did it was probably for the Bullets because they sucked pretty much every year they didn’t have Wes Unseld, the hippo was really easy to take off the dribble. Enjoy this picture, if it doesn’t make you at least smile you are probably a communist and should have that checked out…Why do you hate America?
The NBA: where incredibly awkward marketing pictures happens!