Death From Above 1979 reunite for Coachella (and hopefully more?)

You’ve probably seen the Coachella lineup by now.  There aren’t a lot of surprises, especially among the names that get the big print on the flyer:  Kanye West, Arcade Fire, Kings of Leon, The Black Keys, The National….these are all pretty standard summer festival bands.  There is one shocker, though, on the second line of the Saturday lineup, and it’s not one that many people saw coming:  Death From Above 1979.

DFA1979 was exactly the band I wanted back in 2004, the year they released You’re a Woman, I’m a Machine (their only full length).  They were the perfect balance between dance-punk* and Lightning Bolt, two things I was very much obsessed with as a senior in high school.  If that album has flaws, I can’t see them because it’s too intertwined in my personal musical history to evaluate objectively.

I didn’t know I wanted a DFA1979 reunion, and that’s probably part of the reason the announcement is so exciting.  There was just no reason to think they would ever get back together.  For starters, they allegedly hate each other.  To put it charitably, both Jesse Keeler and Sebastian Grainger have come off as prickly in interviews, and I saw the latter be a total dick to a fan at one of the early Sebastian Grainger and the Mountains shows.  This isn’t a duo I expected to patch things up, especially since Keeler’s MSTRKRFT is probably a bigger touring draw than DFA1979 ever was.

They must have figured out a way to stand each other’s company, though, even if the peacemaker is just the fat paycheck Coachella is surely paying them.  I don’t care what it is, honestly, and I wouldn’t be upset if they never produce any new recorded material.  I just want a chance to see these guys live, which is something I missed out on the first time around.  I’m hoping this isn’t just a one-off gig made possible by Coachella’s checkbook, although that wouldn’t be surprising.  The festival is known for offering loads of cash to reunited acts, with The Smiths famously offered something like $5 million for just one performance.  DFA1979 are surely making much less than that, though, so lets hope the prospect of a sold out North American rock club tour is enticing enough to get them out on the road.

* – Yeah, I was way into the dance-punk thing.  The Rapture, Radio 4, !!!, all of it.  Most of it strikes me as goofy as hell now, but at least it led me to older post-punk and Liars, who quickly dropped the style for something way more interesting.

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