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Inside Coachella 2012: The Sets, The Sweat, The Party
Expectations shattered, rumors defied, and boundaries destroyed!

 

 

Hundreds of LED lit balloons marked the sky as we gazed over what had become our home over the past four days. It was the last show, the final push. We were running on fumes and anticipation after a weekend full of countless standout acts. This was the set we had been waiting for since we were fourteen, sneaking Dr. Dre and Snoop Dogg CD’s into our sister’s Walkman to memorize every explicit detail of what would become so monumental so quickly. As we stood amongst the masses in complete disbelief, the entire weekend flashed before our eyes.

It seemed like so long ago that we were grooving at Breakbot and being absorbed into Feed Me’s unparalleled day-time energy. Shortly after, we were being totally mesmerized by Amon Tobin’s ISAM Experience and shattered by Datsik’s explosive set. In true Coachella fashion, the weekend grew gradually more exciting. 

Day two started with an unbelievable showing by the young superstar Azealia Banks, followed by a genre defying set by Flying Lotus. Those who caught him were fortunate enough to be a part of the world premier of multiple tracks off the new album and bared witness to his collaboration with the uber-talented Thundercat. SBTRKT followed with a live set that completely legitimized the DJ turned band phenomenon. They encapsulated the energy of the original DJ set and used it to build a refreshing take on live electronic music. For those who love them, Radiohead was of course a standout set for the weekend, but our tastes drew us to  A$AP Rocky and Sub Focus to close out the epic day.

We woke up caked in our own sweat and dirt. This was the Coachella we had known and loved. Cloudless blue skies pierced by unadjusted eyes as we emerged from our over-heated tent. Looking over the packed schedule was only making us more excited and as we headed toward the venue we could feel it in our stomachs --this day would go down in history. The Sahara tent was in true form, with destructive sets by the young Zedd and Porter Robinson surrounding the veteran dubstep duo Flux Pavillion & Doctor P. After, we were able to catch one of our favorite acts, the eastern inspired Beats Antique. 

This marked the beginning of some serious conflicts and the mad rush to catch as much music as possible commenced. Every man for themselves. The Brainfeeder take over carried on, as Thundercat and The Gaslamp Killer absolutely rocked the Gobi tent. Simultaneously, araabMUZIK produced one of the most impressive sets of the weekend, as he showed off his unrivaled live beat-making talent with Akai’s new MPC Renaissance. 

 After an absolutely gigantic showing from Nero, we headed over to one of my most anticipated acts of the weekend, Justice. While they came out nearly 30 minutes late, we were awed by their performance and were lucky enough to catch their DJ set at Club Nokia at LA Live the following Wednesday. From here we cooled down in the back of Beirut before seeing the utterly impressive Modeselektor play our favorite tracks off their newest album, Monkeytown. While we wished we could have stayed longer, we had to head to the main stage, as years of devotion compelled us. 

From the first flash of the stage lights to the final song, Dr. Dre and Snoop Dogg took their audience on a roller coaster ride through rap history. One guest appearance after another brought the show to unfathomable heights, with the inclusion of Eminem, 50 Cent, Kendrick Lamar, and a holographic Tupac. Expectations were shattered, rumors defied, boundaries destroyed. As to where this technologically enhanced age of performance leaves us is totally unclear, but we are proud to have been a part of it regardless. Such is a representation of everything that is Coachella, where ridiculousness is the norm and over-production is standard. Get your tickets for next year, because everyone must experience this unbelievable festival.