In anticipation of Coachella’s 17th annual music and arts festival, LA Weekly has put together their list of the top 20 Coachella sets of all time. The prestigious list includes some of the world’s most legendary festival talent such as Madonna, Kanye West, Roger Waters, Rage Against The Machine, Prince and even Tupac’s hologram. In addition to the mainstream headliners, four electronic music performances cracked LA Weekly’s top 20, including these epic sets from LCD Soundsystem, Underworld, and The Chemical Brothers:
20. LCD Soundsystem, Sahara Tent, 2007
18. Underworld, Outdoor Stage, 1999
16. Chemical Brothers, Sahara Tent, 2005
In naming the No. 1 best Coachella performance of all time, L.A. Weekly selected none of than Daft Punk‘s 2006 Sahara Tent masterpiece. The website had this to say about the french duo’s performance, which celebrates its 10th anniversary this year:
“Whether into electronic music or not, Coachella-goers who missed this set are still kicking themselves. Moving way beyond the standard laser-packed, confetti-blasting DJ set at the Sahara tent, Daft Punk’s 2006 Coachella performance was the industry-wide wake-up call that established the current state of EDM as the most innovative and progressive musical movement in the United States today.
As night fell, a massive crowd — rumored to be as many as 40,000 — swarmed the overflowing Sahara tent. A thick sense of mystery filled the nighttime air, as nobody knew what to expect from the elusive French robots, Guy-Manuel de Homem-Christo and Thomas Bangalter. Then, out of nowhere, it appeared: a mammoth LED pyramid, towering over thousands of soon-to-be-converted lifelong fans.
Nobody had seen this amount of LED; nobody had experienced this level of evolved production. As soon as the call of the distorted robot voice blasted through the speaker walls, there was no looking back. Leaning exclusively on their original material, Daft Punk’s set consisted of never-before-heard, on-the-fly edits and remixes, creating new, mutated songs cut out of their classics and deeper tracks. The music alone challenged the status quo at the time of a DJ culture heavily reliant on playing other artists’ works.
This was the paradigm shift that finally placed electronic music as a worthy competitor against its big brothers, rock and rap. After Daft Punk, every active artist within electronic music — and arguably even beyond it — had to rethink their approach to live performance.
Anyone holding their breath for the return of the pyramid should give up all hope. Daft Punk are not ones to repeat themselves, and this performance is one that could never be recreated.”