News: Coachella taps Black Keys, Radiohead, Dr. Dre and Snoop Dogg as 2012 festival headlinersBy Ricardo Baca | January 9th, 2012 | 2 comments
UPDATE 1/13/11: Passes for both the first and second weekend of this year’s festival have sold out in less than three hours, according to the promoter.
Coachella just dropped its line-up for this April. Dre-and-Snoop, Radiohead and Black Keys are headlining – and that makes sense.
Dre and Snoop are the big catches here, reuniting one of modern hip-hop’s greatest collaborations. Radiohead has headlined the California fest before and they’ll surely headline it again. And the Black Keys were one of the best acts of last year’s fest, and they’ve only gotten bigger since – as their current arena tour (including a newly announced Colorado date) suggests.
But let’s dig beyond the headliners.
Jeff Mangum. The reclusive frontman of long-goner indie rockers Neutral Milk Hotel? Wow. Such a great spot, as his sporadic performances have been tough catches in the last year.
Bon Iver. Of course. They topped Pitchfork’s Top 10 of 2011 – and lists of many others – and now Justin Vernon can rework his image after last year’s fest, which found him wailing aside Kanye West for a strangely memorable headlining set.
M83. Absolutely. We caught their first performance at Coachella a number of years ago, back when their live set was less developed. But given the band’s musical growth and evolved live persona, this will be a blast.
Le Bucherettes. They were our faves from South by Southwest 2011, and now they’ll take on the California sun with an early set that will surely involve a certain amount of potentially disturbing D.I.Y. spectacle.
Gotye. It’s so excellent to see this Aussie pop star on this side of the world. His music is otherworldly, ethereal. Now we’ll see if he catches on Stateside a la Feist. (And yes, she’s also playing Coachella 2012.)
At the Drive-In. Yep, this reunion has Facebook all abuzz today. Never been a fan – of them or the Mars Volta – but Coachella has always prided itself on a place for rekindling relationships. And this booking will be make or break some fans decision to head to the desert.
Flux Pavilion. The now-dubstep-friendly Coachie needs its womp-womp, and Flux Pavilion will have it in spades.
Buzzcocks. Old-school punk will represent with these torch-bearers, and fans should expect more out of this set than last year’s Big Audio Dynamite set.
The Shins. The band’s new single dropped today, and if it’s any indicator of what’s to come, it’s more of the same from these tender indie heroes who are no strangers to Coachella. It’s smart timing for the group, which remains one of the biggest groups on indie label Sub Pop.
Times are tough, and the festival is making things easier than ever to attend – by adding a second weekend. The same line-up will play the polo fields in Indio, Calif., on April 13-15 and April 20-22 – a quick fix since last year’s single-weekend fest sold out in advance – and while we foresee issues with that plan, we do give promoters AEG Live kudos.
This is solid, catch-all booking that will have people changing their minds. Some will decide against the trek because many of these acts are widely available in most major markets in the U.S. in the coming months. Others will pinch pennies in hopes of catching an only-in-Coachella experience with some of the rarities.
Maybe Justin Vernon will replace the late Nate Dogg in the Dr. Dre classic “The Next Episode,” which just happens to feature Snoop Dogg? A guy can dream.
Click here to revisit Reverb’s coverage of Coachella 2011.