Festival season seems miles away but Coachella wasted no time in 2016 to announce their line-up after seemingly confirmed rumours spoilt regrouping headliners LCD Soundsystem and the classic Guns N Roses line-up. Whilst these headliners have been confirmed alongside dance super heavyweight Calvin Harris, there’s a lot of interesting things to notice about the line-up.
— Coachella (@coachella) January 5, 2016
As you can see from the line-up there is a lot to dissect, so let’s crack into it!
High on Friday’s line-up we can see The Kills which seems to suggest that Alison Mosshart’s main project will return with their 4th album in 2016 alongside playing the festival and no doubt others on the circuit.
One of my favourites, Bats For Lashes is present on Saturday’s line-up suggesting that Khan has met her plan of finishing the new album in time for release this year. Joining her on Saturday are gorgeous indie rockers Alvvays and R&B princess SZA who may well be working on new stuff!
The most exciting potential return however belongs to dance duo M83 who may finally follow-up 2011’s immaculte ‘Hurry Up, We’re Dreaming’ with a new record in 2016.
Jumping The Pond
Its always interesting to take a look at Coachella’s line-up and try and predict who from the UK can achieve fame or have a fair crack at it. The name which sticks out straight away is James Bay, as he is on the top line of Saturday’s line-up. There’s no doubt that the US will love his hits Let It Go and Hold Back The River as much as we have in the UK.
Low down but important on Friday’s line-up is Grime King, Skepta, who will no doubt further the genre’s influence on US rap from his appearance at Coachella. Expect there to be oodles of famous people side of stage for his performance.
Much like Bay, The 1975 are top line of Sunday’s line-up as they take their sophomore record to the US to dominate the same way they have in the UK thus far. Joining them on the Sunday from the UK are Wolf Alice who look to take their popular Grungey indie to American shores and Scottish alternative Hip-Hop Mercury Music Prize winners Young Fathers, who should both put on an outstanding show.
What does this mean for the UK Festival Circuit?
If I had to guess, I would predict that Download Festival will be kicking themselves that things didn’t fall into place to book GNR as an exclusive which makes me think that Glastonbury may be interested in putting on a heavy rock band to headline this year, be it GNR or the previously hinted AC/DC. A dream would be for Reading & Leeds Festival to manage to add GNR to Red Hot Chili Peppers but that seems unlikely. I’m not convinced LCD Soundsystem will headline any of the UK majors but I could absolutely see them sub or headline a second stage. Alternatively I could see Latitude playing a blinder by booking them to headline.
From the undercard it seems that Foals will continue playing live heavily this year and I could actually see them taking the step up to headline a major UK festival (I predict Reading & Leeds).
There are lots of acts announced for Coachella who fall into the ‘2nd stage headliner’ pot including The 1975, Disclosure, Chvrches, Major Lazer and Jack U who I think T in the Park, Isle Of Wight and Reading & Leeds would be mad not to approach.
For the more specialist festivals I think Sia and Ice Cube exclusives for Wireless would make sense and be a hot ticket. Zedd would probably put on quite a show for a festival like Wireless of V-Festival too.
Lastly, thoughts on the line-up?
I think Coachella 2016 will be a lot of fun. It has a lot of artists I’d be interested in watching on the ever-reliable YouTube coverage and there’s a fair few I’m crossing my fingers announce UK shows as mentioned previously. I think in all honesty having seen both Axl’s GNR and Slash’s solo project that a GNR reunion will look great but sound terrible and be a let down for those expecting the heights of the late 80s. I don’t also know what to expect of the other headliners. LCD Soundsystem returning is nice but not ground-breaking for me personally. I guess the line-up is a bit bland with sparkles of goodness about it.
As always with every year, I will hide away in my room come festival time for three days and live-blog the performances I see in COUCHELLA 2016!