Festivals

Coachella 2014: Julian Casablancas Polarizes, Future Islands Dominate With Saturday Afternoon Sets

Julian Casablancas performs at Coachella 2014
Jason Kempin/Getty Images

Julian Casablancas performs on day 2 of the 2014 Coachella Valley Music & Arts Festival on April 12, 2014 in Indio, California.

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“This music is meant to alienate all the right people,” said sometime-Stroke Julian Casablancas as a stream of people exited the tent midway through his semi-surprise set on Coachella’s Mojave stage. The comment wasn’t far off: though the early response to his band's 40-minute tour of garage blasts and surfy riffs was rapturous, his set must have confounded any Strokes fans hoping for familiar songs, as the entire set by Julian Casablancas + The Voidz was essentially composed of not-yet-released songs. It wasn't as if they lacked any similarity to hits like 'Last Nite' -- one only needed to hear his guitarist's high-neck arpeggios to be reminded of the Strokes' Albert Hammond Jr. -- but there were few melodies to hang onto amid hard-rock smashing and the ooze of attitude.