Coachella isn’t really a rock festival anymore, and Blood Orange was never a rock project. But when he played one of Coachella’s big outdoor stages yesterday, Blood Orange mastermand Devonté Hynes still started off his set with an honest-to-god rock-star moment. Playing mostly solo-acoustic, Hynes opened his set by covering the Neil Young classic “Heart Of Gold,” a song that will always sound great in a music-festival context.
“Heart Of Gold,” from Young’s 1972 album Harvest, is easily the biggest hit of Young’s career. (“Heart Of Gold” went to #1; no other Neil Young song has even charted in the top 10.) “Heart Of Gold” was such a big deal, in fact, that Young, clearly uncomfortable with its success, spent the rest of his career trying to get away from it. From what we’ve seen of Coachella, Hynes’ “Heart Of Gold” cover didn’t kick off some massive singalong. But it still made for a cool moment, a tender and thoughtful cover of a great and unexpected song. Tender moments are in short supply at a festival like Coachella, so enjoy this one:
Dev Hynes / Blood Orange leads off @Coachella appearance with a song you'll never guess!
Tried to tell y'all . . . "Live stream Blood Orange!"
— Video Connoisseur™ (@LiveConnoisseur) April 15, 2019
Later in the set, when Hynes did “Hope,” a single from last year’s Negro Swan album, he brought out Tei Shi, who sang on the album version of the song, and Lil Yachty, who did not. (Neil Young and Lil Yachty have both recorded with DRAM. Just saying.) Yachty wore a Weezer shirt. Watch that happen below.
— Party at the Rooftop (@AtRooftop) April 15, 2019
Blood Orange, if you didn’t already know, is a really good festival act.