Music revelations and utter madness: the Coachella mixtape

April 19, 2018
- Extracurriculars
Author - Katherine Fox

Last weekend, two of Funkhaus’ very own ventured to the desert to embark on the three-day adventure that is Coachella. Ready to recount, let me first offer you full disclosure: we’re never going to call it Beychella.

Whether you’re an Instagram enthusiast, foodie extraordinaire, or your favorite band happened to grace the lineup, it’s safe to assume that you have some familiarity with Coachella. There’s a lot of buzz around the music festival that is now so big it has sectioned off into two weekends, back-to-back. It’s enough buzz to make some people groan.

But behind the flower crowns and the endless chatter around accessories and ensembles, Coachella is, first and foremost, a music festival. And music festivals, just like the melodies they bring to the stage each day, are entirely magnetic and magical. Before you roll your eyes, hear me out.

Music festivals in their purest form are celebrations of, well, music. And the way they function are somewhat similar. A fleeting, ethereal medium, music is subjective; taste is entirely up to the individual and incredibly unpredictable. Festivals take on the same notion and amplify it, bringing together hundreds of bands—some revered, others unknown—and leave it up to festival-goers to freely tune in and tap out, forming their own opinions and memories.

The act of discovering a melody, connecting with a chorus, playing a song on repeat until even your neighbor hums along—it’s an alchemy that is entirely unexplainable and utterly rooted in humanity.

Coachella brings out all of the elements that make music the addictive, spellbinding, cerebral experience that it is. And this weekend was no exception. Three days, sets upon sets. It’s enough to make a person go mad.

They say you can’t meet your heroes, but Coachella sure makes it easy to see a whole bunch of them on stage within one weekend. Letting that sink in can launch you into a flurry across the entire festival grounds. Which tent do we venture to first? How strategic do we need to be about drinking water? Are burgers the right move? Or what about beer? Does it even matter?

Perfume Genius, The War on Drugs, alt-J, Fidlar, Portugal. The Man, Brockhampton. The list of performers is never-ending—Coachella makes it possible for you to discover, connect, and create all at once.

No day at Coachella is the same, but there becomes a sort of routine that you fall into nonetheless. Arrive, dash to a stage, pause, break, dash, dance, repeat.

As a Weekend One attendee, I was aware of the surrounding hype and the slew of wristband-wearers who perhaps do not fully care about the music all that much. They were always incredibly easy to find, particularly near the ferris wheel just as the sun began to set.

When the sun would set, running to the Sahara Tent became a treacherous game of dodging fashion mavens as their friends who seem to moonlight as photographers crouched on the ground to find that perfect portrait mode shot in front of the ferris wheel. Spoiler alert: it’s not as easy as it looks—the dodging, that is. But once you arrive in the enclave of the perfectly named tents and stages, all of that nonsense melted away.

From the legendary set that Beyoncé bestowed upon the world as the headliner she was always meant to be to the intoxicating machinations of David Byrne at the Outdoor Stage, it was a weekend that was unforgettable, but also indescribable.

What makes Coachella so great? It’s the same reason as to what makes music so great. It’s an experience; one that you cannot quite articulate.

So instead, I’ll let the music do the talking.