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Must-See Rock Bands at Coachella 2010

The Bands You Need to Catch at This Year's Coachella


faith no more mike patton

Mike Patton of Faith No More

Photo: Mark Metcalfe/Getty Images.
The 2010 Coachella Music and Arts Festival kicks off Friday, April 16. As usual, this Southern California desert festival is a feast of alternative, indie, hip-hop and dance acts. But that doesn't mean Coachella can't rock as well -- here's my daily guide for what rock bands you should catch at the festival:


Street Sweeper Social Club, 5:05pm, Coachella Stage

The supergroup of Rage Against the Machine guitarist Tom Morello and Coup MC Boots Riley put out Street Sweeper Social Club last year, an uneven but occasionally stirring rap-rock debut that the band are hoping to follow up with an EP this year.

Them Crooked Vultures, 7:50pm, Coachella Stage

Another supergroup, this one comprising Foo Fighters' Dave Grohl, Queens of the Stone Age's Josh Homme, and Led Zeppelin's John Paul Jones. Last year's Them Crooked Vultures was a real treat, an album that lived up to the hype generated by the pedigree of its participants. At Coachella, maybe the guys will play something off their forthcoming record?


The Raveonettes, 5:45pm, Gobi

For fans of stripped-down garage-rock, check out the Raveonettes, who will be supporting last year's In and Out of Control. Bandmates Sune Rose Wagner and Sharin Foo delve into the dark side of human nature in their lyrics, and their spare, fierce tunes match that bleakness. Oddly enough, at the same time their songs are extremely hummable.

Coheed and Cambria, 6:40pm, Coachella Stage

The New York prog-rock quartet just released Year of the Black Rainbow, a typically heavy, intricately constructed set of songs. Their albums usually contain complex storylines that can be hard for the neophyte to follow, but in concert you don't need to worry about such specifics: You can just dig on the music.

Faith No More, 7:55pm, Coachella Stage

This show is part of the San Francisco band's reunion tour after years of inactivity. Reviews for their initial shows have been very positive, so this appearance at Coachella should be a huge draw. And if it gets some young person to buy Angel Dust, it was all worth it.

Muse, 9:35pm, Coachella Stage

The British band have continued to court American fans with their 2009 album, The Resistance. Expect them to unleash hit singles like "Uprising" and "Resistance" on stage with their mix of strong melodies and alt-rock guitar work.

The Dead Weather, 11:05pm, Outdoor Theatre

Jack White's side project with Kills vocalist Alison Mosshart will be playing one of Coachella's late-night sets, which is perfect for the dark, sexy songs off their 2009 debut, Horehound. Their sophomore release, Sea of Cowards, drops May 11, so the crowd will probably get to hear a cut or two from it during this performance.


Sunny Day Real Estate, 4:45pm, Outdoor Theatre

The commercially overlooked but hugely influential Seattle band are working on a new album, their first since 2000's The Rising Tide. SDRE's emotional, searching songs have been the inspiration for so many indie-rock bands of the last 10 years, so this Coachella appearance will be a bit of homecoming for them.

Julian Casablancas, 5:35pm, Mojave

The Strokes frontman will no doubt be performing material off his solo album, Phrazes for the Young, a record that was saluted for its sonic adventurousness. Still, it's a decent bet that fans will be hoping Casablancas pulls out one of his Strokes chestnuts for this performance.

Thom Yorke, 9:00pm, Outdoor Theatre

The Radiohead leader has been touring with his side project Atoms for Peace, which includes Red Hot Chili Peppers bassist Flea. Their appearance at Coachella will be the final stop on their nine-date tour, and since the group have no concrete plans for future gigs or an album, this could be your last chance to catch them.

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