Nestled in a private oasis just blocks away from the festival grounds lies the KROQ Coachella House – complete with pool, BBQ, beautiful women and some pretty huge bands. All weekend long, we had several acts come by and perform at our home away from home in the desert.
METRONOMY AND GROUPLOVE BRING CHILL INDIE VIBES
“We’ve been driving around to a lot of gated communities, and I think this is probably the most enjoyable place we’ve been to,” said Metronomy in an interview with Nicole Alvarez at the KROQ Coachella House Sunday morning. The band went on and described themselves as “folk-tronic” and talked about the importance of music videos.
They played the perfect mid-morning coffee-in-hand lawn chair set just hours before their Coachella set. The stylish band played songs “The Look” and “The Bay” off their 2011 album The English Riviera.
Los Angeles’ quirkiest, energetic happy-making (despite the title of their 2011 album, Never Trust A Happy Song) band, Grouplove, played a three-song set of “Lovely Cup,” “Tongue-Tied,” and radio hit, “Colours.”
In an interview with Nicole Alvarez, Grouplove was asked about the inspiration behind two of their other songs, “Chloe” and “Love Will Save Your Soul.” Sean Gadd said that he “found the melody at a hostel in London” for “Chloe;” Hannah Hooper divulged that “Love Will Save Your Soul” was written by her after the band’s first real fight.
The band, who said that fights like that are “what makes songs happen,” have a strong core friendship. In fact, the “never really planned to be a band.”
“We just stayed in touch because we liked each other,” elaborated the band.
KIMBRA TALKS GOTYE’S “SOMEBODY THAT I USED TO KNOW”
22-year-old New Zealand songstress Kimbra Johnson is known most famously right now as the female voice on Gotye’s hit single “Somebody That I Used To Know,” but the brunette chantuese is garnering success in her own right with her jazzy pop vocals. The singer-songwriter already has an established career in Australia and New Zealand with her debut album Vows and has used music as a form of expression since she was a child.
KROQ’s Nicole Alvarez noted in an interview with the KROQ Coachella House that Kimbra’s song are evocative of a David Lynch film. Kimbra agreed Zealand singer/songwriter. Her debut album Vows charted in New Zealand and Australia and many of her unreleased songs are available for her fans to listen to–they sing back the lyrics to her at concerts–thanks to the power of the internet.
Much of Kimbra’s success has been a product of technological advancement. Learning computer programs like ProTools has changed the way Kimbra writes music; for her collaboration track “Warrior” with Foster the People and A-Trak for Converse, the busy Kimbra used her computer to record some of the vocals and the luchador-themed music video was filmed with the usage of green screen. All the musicians were in totally different places when it was shot.
“We had such a deadline to work to and we were all kind of on tour at different places, so we just kind of had to work with what we could,” elaborated Kimbra. “Even the song itself, I was recording a lot of those vocals in an airport in Germany, like singing into my Macbook. You know it was a very 21st century collaboration.”
Another “very 21st century collaboration” that Kimbra has been a part of is with the tech-savvy Gotye. Kimbra explained to Alvarez her views on why “Somebody That I Used To Know” is such a huge success.
“I’ve been a fan of Gotye’s work for years,” elucidated Kimbra. “He really has a way of kind of pinpointing an emotion and making it really real for people. I know that the song had a vulnerability to it; like a fragility that everyone could relate to. But, I didn’t think either of us could have predicted the success of the track.”
“I think it’s something that everyone can relate to. That’s what everyone says, you know, but it’s true for people. It maks you feel a sense of unity with other people who have been through the same thing.”
“I feel special and blessed to be the person to sing that line for all the other women. It’s a complicated thing breaking up with someone.”
FLORENCE WELCH OF FLORENCE + THE MACHINE ROUGHS IT AT COACHELLA
Ethereal British beauty, indie pop singer-songwriter Florence Welch from Florence + The Machine might look like a wood nymph and admitted to sleeping on a balcony at the first Coachella that she went to, but MTV’s latest Unplugged performer is a favorite among hip-hop’s higher echelon. The singer has performed with Drake, is loved by Kanye West who’s records “have inspired me so much,” and influenced the outcome of a Jay-Z show.
“When we went to go see Jay-Z play,” exclaimed Welch. “I kind of met him as he was driving his buggy up onto stage and he was like, ‘Oh my god. You’re here. Ok, I’m going to do a really good show now.’ What!”
Welch said that she spent a lot of time rehearsing for her MTV Unplugged show and that it was hard choosing an acoustic cover. A huge soul fan, Welch settled on an old standard.
“I almost didn’t do ‘Try A Little Tenderness’ because it’s my favorite song and I thought, ‘I can’t do this,'” admitted Welch. “I didn’t know how to do it the same, but I just thought, ‘I’ve got to slow it down.'”
Welch, who attributes her descriptive capability to her art historian professor mother, wasn’t exactly the best of students, despite her mother’s academic stature. But she did write her first self-described “terrible” songs while she was at school.
“I think I was already writing about heartbreak,” laughed Welch. “I got into trouble for writing lyrics in my library books. If anyone at my school can find them, I’m sure they’re there.”
MORE COACHELLA STORIES
Nadia Nior, CBS Radio Los Angeles / Jay Tilles, CBS Local