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A Guide to Coachella 2012

The 13th annual Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival is this weekend (and next weekend, too) and -- great news! -- you're going. For three days, you'll enjoy fun, sun and some of the most exciting musical acts on the planet. And as for the heatstroke, cripplingly depressing comedowns and Youtube videos of you doing shit like this, well, just deal with all of that on Monday. As for now, your plate is probably full enough, so I'm here to make your trip just a little bit easier. With so many bands on the bill, there are going to be schedule conflicts, so I've gone ahead and made some of the tough decisions for you. Without further ado, here's your handy guide to Coachella 2012.


12:00 Great news! Your day starts off easy. Head over to the Gobi tent for abstract synth-poppers Abe Vigoda.

odd future wolf gang not same.jpg1:00 Hang around the Gobi and try and spot confused teenagers waiting for Odd Future Wolf Gang Kill Them All during Wolf Gang's set.

2:05 Try to stay for a bit of progressive Americana outfit Other Lives, but be on time for LA's own Kendrick Lamar at 2:40 at the Coachella stage. Bring weed.

3:40 Stay through for James, take a drink every time some bro loudly requests "Laid".

4:25 Head on over to the Outdoor Theatre for some Neon Indian. Shame this guy isn't playing at night.

5:45 You'll probably be tempted to find a nice patch of grass and stay put for Girls (pizza and a bottle of wine not included), but check out rap freakazoids Death Grips over at the Gobi for a needed charge.

wulyfarepamadness copy.jpg
7:00 It's Wu Lyf versus Madness, but it's also dinner time. Go get an arepa or something.

8:00 This one's tough: Pulp at 7:50 against Frank Ocean at 8:15. Too bad Z-Trip isn't on the bill to split the difference. But in all seriousness, go see Pulp.

8:50 This move will pretty much determine the rest of your night. Go for Mazzy Star at the Outdoor Theatre (followed by Explosions In the Sky) if you're planning on saving yourself for Saturday, or you could go on a real tear with the Rapture in the Mojave tent, followed by M83. At that point, you might as well grit your teeth and bear Swedish House Mafia at 11:30 on the Coachella Stage, because that's where all the college girls will be.

12:00 Great news! You get to sleep in. I've never heard of roughly 75% of these brunch bands.

2:30 Head to the Outdoor Theatre for the always-reliable Destroyer. If it's a bust, you always have sassy rap phenomenon Azealia Banks at 2:50 in the Gobi tent. But my guess is it won't be a bust. Hey, festivals are hard work.

3:40 Obligatory "go ogle Grace Potter" break.

tuneyards + buzzcocks.jpg4:50 It's tUnE-yArDs versus the Buzzcocks, and as much as it pains me to say it, go see t-y. A tailor-made Coachella band.

6:00 Noel Gallagher's High Flying Birds, Andrew Bird or Manchester Orchestra? Go get a popsicle.

7:20 No one's gonna tell you to go see Squeeze over Jeff Mangum. Except me. Better yet, go get situated in the Gobi tent for the 1-2 punch of St. Vincent followed by Flying Lotus (sorry, Shins and Feist).

bonivercoachellayes.jpg9:30 Yes, go ahead, you're allowed. Go see Bon Iver.

10:00 Run back and forth like a lunatic between Godspeed You! Black Emperor at the Mojave tent and SBTRKT at the Gobi. Try not to puke.

11:05 Man, these set times are approximate. Smoke the rest of the night away with Radiohead on the Coachella Stage and later with A$AP Rocky in the Gobi.


12:00 You guys are safe until Wild Beasts at 3:25. Besides, if you hear that any of these early bands are worth seeing, you can always come back next week.

4:10 Graze on over to Real Estate in the Gobi tent, and stay for Thundercat at 5:20 for a double dose of the sublime.

wildflagaraabmuzik.jpg5:30 An easy one: Skip Wild Flag and head over to the Mojave for beat maestro araabMUZIK.

6:55 Catch feelings at either the Weeknd at the Outdoor Theatre or Gotye at the Mojave. Just kidding about Gotye. There will be better drugs at the Weeknd, plus: Boys with no girlfriends, and girls claiming not to have boyfriends.

7:45 This is your last chance to do it big, so ping-pong from Justice on the Coachella Stage, then to Girl Talk at 8:25 at the Outdoor (but not for long, because c'mon, you've seen the guy before), then back for the righteous return of At The Drive-In.

dresnoopcoachella.jpg10:35 If you miss Dre and Snoop, I swear to god I'll fly across the country and smack you.
Get home safe!

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