Radiohead‘s headlining performance at Coachella on Friday night (April 14) turned out to be a test of both fans’ and the band’s patience.
After beginning with a series of songs off their latest album release, A Moon Shaped Pool (including “Daydreaming,” “Desert Island Disk,” and “Ful Stop”) on the Coachella main stage, the group was forced to leave the stage temporarily after the sound from the main stage’s speakers cut out during the end of “Ful Stop,” leaving the band to play on oblivious that only they could hear themselves on their in-ear monitors.
“F–king aliens again,” Yorke said as he returned to the stage.
The group played Ok Computer opener “Airbag” without incident, but the audio again dropped out during In Rainbows opener “15 Step,” drawing audible groans from the crowd and forcing the band to leave the stage again at the song’s conclusion. They returned after approximately 4 minutes of silence to play “The National Anthem” before the issue resurfaced during “Let Down.”
“Can you actually hear me now?” Yorke said. “I’d love to tell you a joke, lighten the mood, something like that. But this is Radiohead, so f–k it.”
The group showed considerable poise and professionalism in the face of an undoubtedly frustrating issue, continuing to play with gusto despite their disappointment. Highlights of their set’s second half included staples like “Everything in its Right Place,” “Nude, and “Idioteque,” complete with the addition of a Middle Eastern-influenced synthesizer interlude.
“Oh you know a funny thing happened on the way to the festival tonight… oh no it didn’t,” Yorke mused before launching into rare fan favorite “Creep” to uproarious cheers.
Briefly relinquishing the stage after the 1992 radio hit, Radiohead returned to play five-song encore consisting of “You and Whose Army, “No Surprises,” “Paranoid Android,” “Bodysnatchers” and “Karma Police.”