Coachella |


May Selby
Mountain Mayhem
1. The festival skyline with its signature ferris wheel and 2014 art installations, Lightweaver to the left, and Escape Velocity (the roaming astronaut) to the right.

A highlight every spring for many a music aficionado is hitting up the music and arts festival in the California desert. Originally a single-weekend fest, Coachella has grown over the years into a massive attraction, spanning two weekends with an identical line-up featuring talent from practically every genre from house to pop to hip-hop to dance to blues and beyond.

For the 2014 edition, held from April 11 to 13 and 18 to 20, attendance hovered around the 90,000 mark each weekend with 170 acts across six stages. Having missed last year’s installment, I had the opportunity to return this spring with Aspen friends for the second weekend, catching acts on my bucket list like Fat Boy Slim and Pet Shop Boys and discovering other ones I’d not yet seen like CHVRCHES and Arcade Fire. With so much music over so few days, it’s impossible to hear it all, and it requires a clear strategy to get through the masses from stage to stage. Good thing Belly Up hosts quite a few of the stars from Coachella’s roster, such as Empire of the Sun who played here between festival weekends and Warpaint who’s performing on Monday.

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