The most unexpected guest of weekend was unquestionably Bad Bunny. At virtually the same time as his buddy J Balvin’s Saturday night set, the Puerto Rican trap star was meant to be 500 miles away in San Jose, California, playing his own headline set. But the two showed their brotherhood again, uniting for a rowdy “I Like It” (sans Cardi B, sadly), before going into a hyper-speed boogaloo dance-off. Bunny did make it up to San Jose, although a few fans voiced their annoyance on social media at his lateness. But this, coupled with a sizzling Rosalia appearance during “Con Altura,” made Balvin’s slot a party to remember.
This London-based collective released one of 2018’s under-the-radar treasures in the shape of their self-titled debut album — written while most of the band were all living together in one house. They weren’t exactly the buzz band of the weekend, but the Frank Ocean-endorsed eight-piece played a kaleidoscopic show of oddball-pop, such as the Gorillaz-esque "Prawn Song” and the glitchy but euphoric “Something For Your M.I.N.D.” “We’re Superorganism and we rule,” stated the wonderfully sardonic front woman Orono Noguchi. If you don’t know, now you know.
The standout moment of weekend one was no fluke. Eilish returned to Coachella and created another moment for the ages with a powerful and staggeringly dynamic display, as Justin and Hailey Bieber, Jaden Smith, and members of BLACKPINK watched. Even with a slightly reduced production (her flying bed was ditched due to high winds), “bad guy” and “you should see me in a crown” still sounded as colossal as ever, and after suffering a microphone fail last week, Vince Staples returned to body his verse in “&burn.” During “when the party’s over,” the festival-wide display of devotion in the crowd seemed to overwhelm Eilish. “I literally used to sit in my room and cry because I wanted this shit so bad,” she said. “And here it is.” Billie Eilish’s time is truly upon us.
Weezer stole plenty of weekend one headlines with guest spots from Tears For Fears and a Twitter-busting appearance from TLC’s Chili, but the alt-rock elders made weekend two mostly about themselves. And why not? Twenty five years on from their self-titled debut, Weezer are exactly the kind of hit machine you want at a festival. Coachella is also the perfect place to observe how Weezer’s crowd has changed. Five years ago, they were worryingly close to becoming a ‘90s nostalgia act, but their cover of Toto’s “Africa” has sent a new generation of fans their way, who are only just learning about songs like “The Good Life,” “El Scorcho,” and even “Buddy Holly.” Weezer was due a renaissance, but nobody could have expected this.
The Scottish band’s Marshmello collaboration “Here With Me” is currently creeping up the Billboard Hot 100 — helped, no doubt, by their weekend one performance which featured a guest spot from the producer himself. But for weekend two, they gave it a rest, and took the opportunity to show off the many other gems they stashed away. 2018’s third album Love Is Dead album was a huge leap forward for the synth-pop trio, as evidenced by the “Miracle” and the vibrant set-opener “Get Out.” Singer Lauren Mayberry has also become a phenomenally confident frontwoman, owning every inch of the stage, and yet still finding time to mock her Black Swan-inspired stage-garb. “I’m not flexible enough for actual Black Swan,” she laughed. If “Here With Me” makes them stars, then have no doubt, they’re more than ready for it.