Even if you aren’t headed to Indio, there’s no reason not to enjoy the great range and high quality of this year’s Coachella music festival. With YouTube and SiriusXM live streaming, this time around, you can catch quite a few acts from home, but for the moment, let’s imagine that you need a playlist for that long cruise out to the desert. The following are a handful of selections that reflect the wide variety of musical styles available to Coachella-goers over the next two weekends.
Flying Lotus, “Never Catch Me” (featuring Kendrick Lamar): No one is doing more impressive work combining electronic music production with soul, jazz, funk, and you name it than Steven Ellison, aka Flying Lotus. This four-minute track from his most recent release, You’re Dead!, is like a miniature hip-hop symphony. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2lXD0vv-ds8
Father John Misty, “Bored in the USA”: Josh Tillman invented his Father John Misty persona in 2012, but it wasn’t until his hit 2015 release I Love You, Honeybear that Father John became a pop sensation. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hIFrG_6fySg
Swans, “Screen Shot”: Original No Wave noise gangsters Swans have reinvented themselves as 21st-century rock’s masters of the long-form dirge orgy. Their set will be punishing/mesmerizing. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=x8fG79rn9m4
Marina and the Diamonds, “Better Than That”: Quirky pop princess Marina Diamandis just released her best record yet, FROOTS. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=N80eix30Evk
Porter Robinson, “Divinity” (featuring Amy Millan): The kids love Porter, and the feeling is mutual. He’s at the top of the dance-music pyramid today, and his Coachella appearance in 2014 was that fest’s runaway smash. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=si81bIoZRJQ