BY JUSTIN GILLETT
While most people are (hopefully) familiar with the bands that are headlining Coachella, smaller acts tucked away into a massive lineup often get ignored. Thing is, these fledgling bands perform like they have something to prove and typically play better and harder than the stadium-ready groups that headline. So get out of the tent, chug your beer, leave the campsite and catch these five bands that’ll be playing on the early side of the day.
Palma Violets is an English band that blends the worlds of psychedelic and garage rock to create a unique and characteristic sonic aesthetic. With songs centering around the band’s two front men Sam Fryer and Chilli Jesson, the group manages to build a bilateral dichotomy in its music that’s a rare find in many modern bands. Causing a stir after its 2012 single “Best of Friends” became a Youtube sensation, a track that went on to be voted NME’s “song of the year,” Palma Violets established itself as somewhat of a crowd sourced phenom before even landing a record deal. Palma Violets on eventseeker.
White Arrows began as a recording exercise while lead singer Mickey Schiff was attending NYU in 2009. After moving to Los Angeles, enlisting musicians and forming a proper group, White Arrows began playing venues in Southern California, gathering a solid local fan base fairly quickly with its modern psychedelic sound. The band, consisting of six members is often clad in Hawaiian shirts when performing, which complements the beachy sonic demeanor and summertime vibes of the band’s music. White Arrows on eventseeker.
Los Angeles-based producer/musician Ben Schneider, who performs under his Lord Huron moniker, manages to seamlessly blend Americana and tropicalia within the confines of an extremely listenable cohesive whole. While the result bears comparisons to a handful of bands, Schneider’s work doesn’t rely on heavy production or experimental synth tones—allowing for specific instrumentation (mainly guitar and mandolin) to be discernible in his music. Though Lord Huron isn’t hugely known on the music scene, as he continues to release albums and tour, his notoriety will no doubt continue to grow. Lord Huron on eventseeker.
Founder and front man of the garage rock band Willowz, Richie James Follin decided to start his Guards solo project in 2010 after returning from a European tour. With multiple ties to the indie music scene–friends in MGMT and Chairlift, as well as a sister in Cults, who he originally wrote songs for–Follin had plenty of collaborative help on his debut EP. Blending 1980s new wave with 1960s doo wop and hazy DIY production, Guards has managed to distinguish itself from the myriad of other acts trying to get ahead in the multifaceted music world. Guards on eventseeker.
Though often overlooked in the European electronic music scene, Estonia has produced a number of strong producers and DJs, including the up and coming Mord Fustang. His first release, “The Electric Dream”, dropped in 2011 and introduced the dance music community to his swirling electro-infused house and dubstep tracks. The talented producer’s sound is often difficult to pigeonhole, but the Baltic beatsmith describes his own music as a mix of “arpeggios, 1-up mushrooms and disco basslines, plus a wobble or two.” Mord Fustang on eventseeker.
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