There’s few things better than a sunset on the Polo Fields during Coachella. Depending on what sort of mood you’re in, any number of choices at the moment the sun begins to fade could be the right one for you. This guide goes over what might be the best fit for whatever you’re feeling at the moment.
Sunset takes place between 7:12 and 7:14 PM all three days according to Accuweather.com.
— FRIDAY —
1. The sunset you want to stomp your feet and dance to: Alabama Shakes at Outdoor Theatre (7:00-7:50)
You just need to watch a few moments of their epic SNL performance from a month ago to want to start shaking your hips to the Alabama Shakes. Being able to see the sun disappear while taking in their tunes on the Outdoor Theatre is going to be a surefire highlight for anyone who is there.
2. If you want to contemplate lost love: Lykke Li at Mojave (7:20-8:10)
I had the chance to see the rising pop star at The Palladium last year and it was unexpectedly one of my favorite shows. Her music will quickly find its way into your soul and it’ll luckily start getting a bit dark if you have to low-key shed some tears. There’s little doubt that she will make her two performances in the desert count after scrapping early year tour dates.
3. If you’re tripping balls: The War on Drugs AND Interpol at Coachella Stage (7:25-8:15)
The War on Drugs’ music was made for this moment. Though the sun won’t start setting until a few minutes later, they will be a perfect appetizer. The moments that Interpol kicked into “Evil” at FYF Fest last year, I felt like I was on acid even though I had never been on acid.
We don’t advocate drugs here at Grimy Goods, but if you happen to be on a psychedelic on Friday around sunset, these options figure to be your safest bet to enhance that experience.
4. The sunset you want to contemplate life to: Jon Hopkins at Yuma (6:00-7:15)
The Yuma tent is generally pretty nuts but if you want to get in there for a more laid-back, perfect for sunset set, Jon Hopkins is definitely your guy. I’d put his style of electronic music up there with Tycho, who also is at Coachella and someone I would’ve liked to seen at sunset. This would be a good set to catch hanging at the back as you get ready for final stretch of Friday.
— SATURDAY —
Run The Jewels at The Regent
5. The sunset you want to smoke your 10th joint to: Run the Jewels at Mojave (6:55-7:45)
Like I previously mentioned, we don’t advocate drug use … but marijuana is practically legal in California and even if you’re not smoking, you’re going to catch a contact high somewhere. El-P and Killer Mike had the entire crowd singing and throwing their hands up at the SPIN Party at SXSW a few weeks back and their live performance is magnificent. They also preach good vibes above all, a message that should be stressed to Coachella goers regularly.
6. Where your square dance moves won’t be laughed at: Belle and Sebastian at Outdoor Theatre (6:40-7:30)
Even if you’re a good dancer, hearing “Sleep the Clock Around” or anything else from The Boy With an Arab Strap will have you dancing like a complete square. But the best part is, nobody really cares. At their show at the Ace, a bunch of hipsters jumped on stage and showcased their best worst dance moves.
7. If you “just wanna hear that one song”: Glass Animals at Gobi (7:10-7:55)
“Right, my little pooh bear, wanna take a chance? Wanna sip this smooth air, kick it in the sand, I’d say I told you so but you just gonna cry, You just wanna know those peanut butter vibes.” You know you’ve heard this song “Gooey” on KROQ and ALT987 a ton the past few months. You probably know it as “that peanut butter vibes” song. After seeing them at the ALT 98.7 Christmas show last year, I found they’ve got a lot of smooth-sounding jams that’ll ease your way into Saturday’s main course.
8. When you’re trying to catch your 14th and 15th wind: Danny Tenaglia at Yuma (6:50-8:30)
Saturday is generally the most brutal day of the festival. You’re still in party-hard mode, have a full day of partying under your belt (and maybe even Thursday night, too) and still have another full day ahead. If you need an audio version of a shot of espresso in your veins, DJ Danny Tenaglia’s marathon set at Yuma is where you should be. He’s a longtime house DJ that isn’t all about the build-ups and drops like many DJs today.
— SUNDAY —
9. If you want to sing along with your buddies from school: Brand New at Mojave (6:40-7:30)
Brand New is easily the most nostalgic act on the Coachella bill for ’80s babies. If you were born 1985 or later, chances are you have a deep and personal connection to at least ONE Brand New song. Many of my friends swear that this is the most important set to them all Coachella weekend and that they’ll be singing along all the words with whoever is standing next to them. If you see a dude wearing a Jenny Lewis shirt singing “Soco Amaretto Lime,” say hi to me.
10. If you want to rock out: Ryan Adams at Outdoor Theatre (6:35-7:25)
Ryan Adams’ self-titled album was one of my favorites of last year. His musical stylings are reminiscent of Don Henley at his best and his catalog is so deep that each set is a little unique. My number one reason I’m glad to be able to go to both weekends of Coachella this year is that I’ll get to see both Brand New and Ryan Adams; not once, but twice.
11. If you want to see a candidate for Coachella’s most surprising set: Philip Selway at Gobi (7:10-7:55)
Flying under the radar is that Radiohead is represented at this year’s fest. Philip Selway is the drummer for the band. He released an awesome album Weatherhouse last year, and though it sounds much different than Radiohead, I feel it fits the interest of the common Radiohead fan.
12. If you need to puke and rally, bro: Kaskade at Coachella Stage (7:25-8:15)
Been going hard for sixty-odd hours and don’t plan on hitting the wall quite yet? Chances are, you have very little room to move. Lucky for you, you probably need to puke and there’s no better way to ensure yourself a sweaty-stinky dance circle at this point.
Hopefully you find this helpful for making one of Coachella’s biggest decisions, what to see as the sun begins to fall. Don’t forget to take a selfie. Or not.
Words: Mark E. Ortega