Tuesday, January 31, 2006

Coachella; then and next

Of course, lots to report on "Coachella Valley Music & Arts Festival."

Before I get into today's announcements, I did get to attend the L.A. premiere of the film on January 19, 2006. I meant to post my thoughts about the full-length film the next day, but I had to cover NAMM (the huge music conference) in Anaheim that day and all day the following day, so I was beat.

But the film is excellent. It's impossible to include performances from every act that has played since the fest's launch last century. So the director of the film, Drew Thomas (who was at the screening and made introductions), kind of puts you there. You get a sense of what makes Coachella so unique and so real. And all about the music. My favorite performances in the film came from Morrissey and Radiohead, but the overall film itself captures the magic in a way most recent concert pics have failed. When Zero 7 played, it reminded me of Hendrix at the Woodstock, a kind of saddness that rarely comes across on the silver screen in rock movies...

Now, today they announced the initial list of acts performing at the upcoming 7th annual Coachella, to be held in Indio on Saturday and Sunday, April 29-30. We already knew about Depeche Mode, but now comes word that Depeche Mode will be the final act on Saturday, while Tool will close the whole thing on Sunday. Other acts include two I haven't seen before and am really looking forward to seeing, Scotland outfit Franz Ferdinand and Iceland's Sigur Ros.

Sunday's highlights will likely come in sets delivered by the Yeah Yeah Yeahs, Scissor Sisters, Bloc Party and Sleater-Kinney. But then part of the magic of Coachella is not knowing who will blow you away.

Monday, January 23, 2006

Duran Duran at the new Key Club at Morongo

I plead guilty. It has been far too long since I've posted any truths here.

I have plenty of excuses. I've been busy attending musical events and writing about them for the Register and it's been crazy these past few weeks.

On Saturday, Jan. 14, I did go to the official launch of the new Key Club located inside the Morongo Casino Resort at Cabazon. I had never seen Duran Duran before, and especially since this was the original lineup playing in an intimate venue, it sounded like fun.

And if catching the band tear through 75 minutes or so of most of their biggest hits (they did omit "Rio," surprisingly) wasn't enough to get you there, checking out the newest club in the Southland sounded promising.

Duran Duran Set List at Key Club at Morongo

Hungry like the Wolf
Planet Earth
Is There Something I Should Know
Sound of Thunder
The Reflex
Ordinary World
Save a Prayer
Girls on Film
(end of regular set; encore is below)
A View to a Kill
Wild Boys

I had expected there to be some excitement in the crowd, especially since near the stage it was strictly standing. To put it mildly, I was crushed. Many, many excited women who were revisiting their youths, big time. But to Duran Duran's credit, the band was great and many of the songs were delivered wonderfully. "Sunrise," "Nice" and "A View to a Kill" were among my favorites. The group's musical skills shone throughout the energetic set.

And the club is very posh. Check it out. www.keyclubmorongo.com.

Monday, January 09, 2006

A question of time

I spent most of this past weekend going through filing CDs, figuring out where to possibly put the growing number of releases I have. Which ones to keep handy. Which ones to put in storage, etc.

From the Beatles and Bruce Springsteen to Radiohead and Neil Young, I can't believe how much music has been produced in my lifetime. And how much of it is pretty good.

With all the bad news, and it comes relentlessly, it's good to know I can retreat and listen to a song. And there are plenty of songs to choose from. And even more in the wake of a pretty good 2005!