Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Festival Lineup Hullabaloo: Coachella, Bonnaroo

It's getting to be that time of year: Summer looms drearily on the horizon, and most bands find themselves opting for outdoor venues or festivals, if for no other reason than to save themselves from being packed in a 90 degree club at 1 in the morning. As such, the festivals have been busy booking bands, trying to cater to a wide group of fans, while at the same time maintaining integrity. It's a fine line, but someone's gotta walk it. This week both Coachella and Bonnaroo disclosed their lineup announcements, and frankly: it looks to be a good year for festivals.

Bonnaroo (as is typically the case) seems to be catering to a wider range of fans, with slightly more mainstream acts, and a notable nod to the jam-band crowd. Headliners include Bruce Springsteen, The Beastie Boys, Phish (two shows), Nine Inch Nails, David Byrne, Wilco, Al Green, and Snoop Dogg. That being said, if one looks a bit further, the list of slightly less mainstream bands is pretty well populated as well. MGMT, Yeah Yeah Yeahs, Of Montreal, TV On The Radio, Band Of Horses, and Grizzly Bear (to name a few) are all making appearances. All that, and a solo set by Elvis Costello! We have to say, it seems like the bigger issue at this show will be managing your time well enough to catch all the awesomeness.

Coachella, by contrast, is pretty solidly positioned in the alternative/indie rock scene. Headliners include Paul McCartney debuting his Fireman material (which we're psyched for), The Killers, The Cure, My Bloody Valentine, Yeah Yeah Yeahs (dubs!), Franz Ferdinand, and Morrissey. The rest of the lineup is a virtual who's-who of the present indie rock scene including (but certianly not limited to) Fleet Foxes, Band Of Horses, Brian Jonestown Massacre, Liars, M. Ward, TV On The Radio, Conor Oberst, and many, many more. Frankly, we'd be willing to go just for MBV and Paul McCartney - the rest is icing!

So, all things being equal, the two festivals are a bit different, but both brimming with talent. We have to say that most people's pick will probably depend less on lineup and more on location. Still, it's nice to see that regardless of which (or, both!?!?) you decide on, that the lineup is incredibly diverse and solid. So now here comes the waiting game: Outside Lands? Treasure Island? What's in store for San Francisco's festival circuit this year? Should you be travelling to get your fill of festival goodness? Stay tuned and we'll be sure to keep you up to date. In the meantime...

Click here for the full Coachella lineup
Click here for the full Bonnaroo lineup.


kata said...

I assume Outside's big act will be Springsteen and Treasure Island's will be AnCo.

But I am DEFINITELY going to Coachella