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  • 01. The Dismemberment Plan Remains Wonderful
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01. The Dismemberment Plan Remains Wonderful
Readers sometimes assume that writers who take controversial positions are trolling, but I'd be trolling myself if I gave the #1 spot to Pharrell or Lorde or QOTSA or even Future Islands. It only belongs to the band that made my night. Lord knows the Dismemberment Plan could use the attention; upon taking the Gobi Tent stage around midnight last night they were directly competing with Muse, Skrillex, Nas, and the Pet Shop Boys. The resulting set was more sparsely attended than anything I've seen at this festival. That meant it had the feel of your average D-Plan club show, albeit with a large gulf in front of the band that prevented fans from climbing on stage for "The Ice Of Boston." I am predisposed to like the Dismemberment Plan -- check the avi -- but as readers of my Uncanney Valley review know, I also scrutinize them more harshly than most. So here's my scrutiny: They played like a band that only gets together every so often, which they are. They didn't come to Coachella as would-be conquerers. Yet despite a few minor flubs, they did conquer Coachella last night, at least for the tiny congregation that assembled to bear witness. The classics clicked as ever, buoyant and full of reckless abandon. But the new material connected too, imbued with a swagger that didn't quite come across on the record. I once put it this way: "Eventually, you don’t even notice the unusual turns of a song like 'Gyroscope,' you just get lost in the propulsive pace and Morrison’s masterful storytelling." That rang true last night. The Plan continued to majestically and spastically tap into human frustration and elation, and those of us who witnessed it couldn't help but get swept up in it. I only wish there were more of us.

I’m not crying, I just have a little dust in my eyes. No, really: Coachella’s second day was largely engulfed by a more manageable (but still annoying!) version of the dust storm that turned last year’s event hazardous. That said, I might actually be crying too because I missed the historic alignment of Nas and Jay Z. The legendary MCs have combined on a number of records since patching up their feud in 2005, but they’d never performed on stage before Shawn joined Nasir Saturday night. To make the occasion extra historic, they did “Dead Presidents,” the song many credit for sparking their feud in the first place when Nas refused an offer to record the hook. They also did Jay’s “Where I’m From.” And that wasn’t the only big cameo of the day. Elsewhere in the Carter family, Beyoncé hopped on stage with sister Solange to dance out “Losing You.” Pharrell invited enough pals on stage with him that I began to wonder about the possibility of a Pharrell-centric road show. Lastly, dust combined with wind to remind us of mortality and Kansas. Carry on, wayward sons, to Saturday’s greatest moments.

Comments (11)
  1. Loving the D-Plan getting the top spot here. The Dismemberment Plan is one of those acts where I just cannot for the life of me understand why they aren’t way more popular. Uncanney Valley wasn’t as good as their older material, but Emergency & I is one of the best albums I have ever heard, and probably the greatest album in terms of lyrics I have ever heard.

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  3. You know, I came in to here fully prepared to make a statement about how I wish the best picks for each day weren’t so obvious (a.k.a. HAIM, Future Islands and CHVRCHES have been festival coverage fodder for awhile) and it would be cool to hear about what was different about Coachella (a.k.a. seeing a band like AFI find redemption as Hot Topic punks and inciting a nice-sized mosh pit on the main stage) but today was better. It’s nice to hear Julian Casablancas’ set was better than SXSW and it’s even nicer to see Dismemberment Plan take Saturday’s top spot for being a band that is still great despite their last album and falling out of favor with other tastemakers’ “cool.”

    Also, Saturday was a hard reminder that weekend 1 will always get the best guest appearances and none of that is guaranteed for weekend 2. Then again, I probably would not have been at Pharrell’s set anyway.

  4. Glad that it sounds like Julian Casablancas put on a much better show than he did at the Fader Fort, I’m really pumped for his album but that set had me worried

  5. quick shoutout to Ty Segall for having an amazing set and playing some new songs

  6. ‘new Pixies is awful’ ??…you’re fucking on crack, new shit is shockingly great. i’ll take indie cindy and bagboy over carabou for the 8 billionth time ANY day.

    • next month, the internet trendsters will all be saying, you know what, the new Pixies is actually amazing, once they think they can stand out more by taking that stance.

      there are a million people like me and you that are loving the injection of new Pixies blood. The least enjoyable second of the least enjoyable new Pixies song will bring more joy to more people than Chris DeVille could hope to do with a thousand lifetimes worth of his work.

  7. Holy Shit! That SNL Skit sounds exactly like how Miley Cyrus talks like in real life!

  8. Nobody in the press has made follow-up of this even though the story was covered like tabloid fodder last year, but Elizabeth Fey — the Foxygen touring member / girlfriend to Sam France who posted about all of the turmoil surrounding the two lead members — is now an ex-touring member and an ex-girlfriend to Sam France. If you visit her Tumblr now, it’s basically all gone, but what I saw a few months ago when I visited it is that she actually was accusing Sam France of beating her, no longer being in the band, responding to critical comments and being all vindictive about everything. There was no way of telling if it was true or not (which could have probably been the reason why she deleted all her Tumblr posts) but my point is that it’s kind of interesting that Foxygen has their shit together now apparently and she’s no longer in the picture.

    • Update: I posed this question on Twitter and someone in the know told me that a restraining order was filed against Fey this past January and that “Elizabeth Fey” is just one of many aliases she uses. If that’s true, yikes…

  9. As much shit Lorde gets for being another name on the Billboard and itunes charts she gets my attention because her music stands out. We can write about her influences but this young girl and the team behind her sound are actually making music that doesn’t sound like the bullshit Dr. Luke and Shellback are producing.

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