9 Must-See Bands At Coachella


With the mass migration to Empire Polo Grounds in Indio, CA already in full swing, we thought we'd offer up some recommendations amongst the rich assortment at this year's Coachella Music Festival (April 16-18).

While JamBase will be featuring next day pictures from Coachella as it unfolds this weekend (check back here regularly for the latest updates!), we did want to chime in with our two-cents for those rolling into the Polo Fields. Steering clear of the headliners – really, who isn't going to kick themselves in the butt if they miss Them Crooked Vultures, Atoms For Peace, Pavement or The Dead Weather? – we offer up a trio of quality picks for each day.

Friday, April 16

1. Lucero :: 6:50-7:40 pm :: Mojave Stage
This long running roots-meets-Bruce band put out a bonafide masterpiece last year (1372 Overton Park), and have been burning up stages for over a decade. An undiluted sense of passion and purpose infuses Lucero's music, and they play live with the same leave-it-all- on-the-stage bravura as The Hold Steady and Drive-By Truckers. Lucero is a cold shower and cup of hot, mean coffee for blue-collar souls, and lord knows we could use both right about now in America.

2. Dillinger Escape Plan :: 5:45-6:30 pm :: Gobi Stage
The precise, brainy feel of math rock, the open-wound emotional charge of emo and a big greasy smear of modern metal – that's the sound of Dillinger Escape Plan. A favorite of disaffected youths nationwide, this band might also slot in well for anyone who likes their music smart, heavy and full of feeling. And based on past shattering performances, it's likely they'll bring something special to Coachella.

3. The Specials :: 6:20-7:20 pm :: Coachella Stage
Part of the second wave of ska royalty that conquered England and young America in the late 70s and 1980s, The Specials were one of the most musically robust, exciting bands to emerge from the Two-Tone movement. Despite the absence of co-founder Jerry Dammers, this opportunity to see the reunited band – who by all reports have been knocking out U.K. and European audiences since 2008 – is not to be missed.

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