Coachella 2014: Plenty of creature comforts at campgrounds

The Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival continues to find new and incredibly pricey ways to turn the weekend into a mini luxury vacation. Plenty of attention has been paid to the 5-star VIP experience, but what about the campgrounds?

Outside the festival gates, the campgrounds reveal a much different world. It's from there that campers and general admission passholders make the lengthy trek to the festival events in the unforgiving heat.

Main Street, the major artery of this makeshift city, is dotted with faux houses. This year's installations include a lighthouse, a colorful gingerbread house, a log cabin, a shiny rocket (which guests can climb into for cute pictures), a tepee and a dwelling fashioned out of oversized Popsicle sticks.

But it is the small comforts that matter, and there are plenty of those to make "roughing it" a lot more fabulous than a tent and a stocked cooler.

A general store has plenty of essentials (socks, clothing, packaged snacks, etc.), but guests with...

Blood Orange, fronted by Devonte Hynes plays at the Coachella festival.

Coachella 2014: Devonte Hynes hits a creative groove as Blood Orange

Devonté Hynes was probably the only person at last weekend's Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival to sing about the troubles of homeless New Yorkers and pose for a backstage photo with the pop star Katy Perry.

But for Hynes, such contrast is the norm.

Beloved by tastemakers for his work in a series of disparate indie bands — including the punky Test Icicles and the folky Lightspeed Champion — the 28-year-old musician has also affected the pop mainstream through collaborations with Solange, Kylie Minogue and Florence & the Machine. He even wrote songs for Britney Spears' most recent album, though they didn't make the final cut.

PHOTOS: All of Coachella's past headliners

Hynes performed at Coachella, as he will again Sunday during the festival's encore weekend, with his latest project, the experimental R&B outfit Blood Orange. It's a well-oiled groove machine, complete with saxophone and slap bass, that can trigger memories of '80s-era hits by Sade and Luther Vandross. 


Kate Nash joins the audience after climbing a barricade during her performance on the first day of the second weekend of the Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival in Indio.

Coachella 2014: Weekend 2, day 1

Performances and scenes from the opening day of the Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival on Friday, April 18, 2014.

MORE PHOTOS: Weekend 1 | Faces of Coachella | All past Coachella headliners | Quotes from performers
The crowd sings along to ZZ Ward, performing the first day of the second weekend of the Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival, at the Empire Polo Club in Indio.

Coachella 2014: Weekend 2 is not just for schmucks

The bloom was off the rose. The genie, out of the bottle. The Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival’s big reveals – its giant roving spaceman art piece and special guests Slash, Justin Bieber and Beyonce – had long since emerged from the wings and into cultural memory.

In its second back-to-back weekend, the festival was no longer the new new thing it had been in the breathless months leading up to the grand unveiling of Coachella’s 2014 lineup. It was no longer the new new thing compelling fan wonderment at how OutKast’s reunion might pan out (comme si, comme ca, if we’re being generous) or whether Daft Punk would show up during Pharrell Williams’ Main Stage performance of “Get Lucky” (nope).

Moreover, it was no longer the new new thing requiring saturation coverage from music magazines, fashion blogs, gossip websites and national news concerns that commandeered so much social media attention just a few days earlier.


Singer Isabella Manfredi of The Preatures as seen during the first week of the Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival.

Coachella 2014: Replacements? Pharrell? Wye Oak? Choices abound

And on this week's episode of the Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival ...

As attendees happily filed into the Empire Polo Club in Indio on Friday for the second and final weekend of the Goldenvoice-promoted Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival, there were a few cliff-hangers left over from last weekend. Among them: Will Pharrell Williams bring out another all-star parade of guest stars? Will every artist on Saturday be in a significantly better mood without the threat of a dust storm? Is Beyonce here again? 

It's not exactly cause for high drama, and the been-here, done-that vibe lent a relatively relaxed mood to the desert festival, which draws about 90,000 people per day. While news broke Friday morning that a 24 year-old woman had died of an apparent overdose, it didn't cast a pall over the festival, as few on the ground in Indio seemed aware of the incident.

PHOTOS: Coachella Day 1 | Day 2 | Day 3

There was, however, some concern that the guest roster would change, but no...

Samuel T. Herring fronts Future Islands on the second day of the Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival in Indio, Calif., on April 12.

Coachella 2014: Future Islands goes late at Pappy & Harriet's

Early Friday morning in the high desert outside of Palm Springs, menacing Baltimore synth pop band Future Islands was responsible for a memorably challenging, if ultimately victorious, sold-out gig.

Drawing a wild bunch of uber-fans to journey up a winding, moonlit road to Pappy

Shara Soo, 27, left, and friend Tyler Kiefer, 23, of San Francisco, stand in a sea of moving people on the first weekend of the 2014 Coachella Music and Arts Festival.

Coachella festival-goer dies of suspected overdose

Before the second weekend of the Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival kicked off on Friday, Indio police were investigating a death connected to last weekend’s festivities. The Riverside County sheriff-coroner called it the result of an apparent drug or alcohol overdose.

A 24-year-old woman in Indio at last weekend's festival died Thursday, the Riverside County sheriff-coroner said Friday morning.

Kimchi Truong of Oakland collapsed while attending Coachella on Saturday and was taken to JFK Memorial Hospital in Indio.

Truong was then transferred to Desert Regional Medical Center in Palm Springs, where she remained until she was pronounced dead on Thursday.

Indio police spokesman Benjamin Guitron said authorities were investigating and said more information would be released. The coroner's office will run toxicology tests to determine what caused the woman’s death. 

In 2008, a 21-year-old La Mesa man who attended the festival died after being found unresponsive at a...

Prince, shown during his performance in March at the Hollywood Palladium, has signed a new contract with Warner Bros. Records and will release a new studio album at an unspecified date.

Prince returns to Warner Bros., new album due soon

After years of releasing his music independently in unconventional ways, Prince has returned to  Warner Bros. Records, the label that issued most of his biggest hit singles and albums from the late 1970s into the ‘90s, and which is set to put out the artist's new studio album at an unspecified date.

"A brand-new studio album is on the way,” Prince said in a statement issued Friday, “and both Warner Bros Records and Eye are quite pleased with the results of the negotiations and look forward to a fruitful working relationship."

His use of “Eye” is a playful allusion to his latest project, a stripped-down ensemble called 3rdEyeGirl. Prince recently announced his next album would feature 3rdEyeGirl and be called "Plectrumelectrum," but Friday's announcement didn't specify if that would be the new studio album to which he alluded.

The new contract, announced by Warner Bros. chairman and CEO Cameron Strang, coincides with this year’s 30thanniversary...

The rapper Future in his new video for "I Won."

Future and Kanye West's video for 'I Won' is now playing

There are "trophy wives," and then there the prizes on offer in Future and Kanye West's new video.

In the new clip for "I Won," Future extrapolates on that old women-as-prizes-for-music-success canard. While decked out in a Tom Wolfe-worthy white suit ensemble, he promises a potential amour, "Ever since I been with you, I feel like I won me a trophy."

Well, it seems like Future means that as a genuine compliment. And heck, if you play with OutKast at its  Coachella reunion, you probably deserve a medal of some sort. 

PHOTOS: 10 great rap lyrics of 2013

Kanye West also shows up for a guest verse, promising to "Take you to the south France / so you can run around without them pants," and declaring the hotness of the entire extended Kardashian clan.

The single is the first off the Atlanta singer/rapper/pitch-shifting warbler's much-anticipated new album "Honest," out April 22. More...

Este  Haim from the band Haim  performs on stage at the Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival.

Women play second fiddle at summer music festivals like Coachella

INDIO, Calif. — Dee Dee Penny, lead singer of the Dum Dum Girls, is no stranger to performing at giant summer musical events. At the first of the two-weekend Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival events last Friday, her retro-rock act played before thousands of ecstatic fans.

She was just one of an eclectic roster of female artists who galvanized Coachella audiences. Teenage provocateur Lorde dazzled amid a howling dust storm in her summer music festival debut. R&B diva Solange got a surprise assist from her superstar sister, Beyoncé Knowles. Alt-torch singer Lana Del Rey turned in a transfixing trip-hop set. And pop-rock sisters Haim were local conquering heroes as they celebrated the success of their 2013 debut, "Days Are Gone," which embodies the Coachella spirit by contemporizing retro sounds with hipster/hippie chic.

It's a benchmark year for Coachella. More solo female artists and all-female bands were on the lineup — 16 — than at any other time in the...

One of the limited-edition releases on the annual Record Store Day, which occurs Saturday, will be this split-single featuring the Cure and Dinosaur Jr.

Record Store Day: 20 curiosities to chase on music retail's big day

Record Store Day 2014 commences Saturday with desperate vinyl collectors and obsessive fans scouring racks for the objects of their desire in the early-morning hours. The annual celebration of independent music retailers has become most stores’ biggest day of the year as a result of the hundreds of limited-edition, specially issued records, cassettes and CDs.

In the years since Record Store Day was launched in 2008, the volume and variety of releases has grown. Until a few years ago, it was relatively easy to make a list of a dozen essential items to pursue with little fear of leaving out something fascinating. But the quantity has snowballed. 

The list is a fascinating glimpse into the thriving reissue market, offering looks at obscure 1980s hard core that’s risen to the top, curious pop songs of Southeast Asia, deep rural blues from nearly a century ago and lots and lots of rock, alt-rock and post-punk wax. 

Below is a curated selection of some of the more odd releases...