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Rock 'n' roll may be pushed aside, but it isn't dead yet

While there weren’t many guitars on Coachella’s mainstage, plenty were tucked away into the club-like atmosphere that is of the Sonora tent. But rock fans shouldn’t be bummed about being pushed aside to an out-of-the-way dome: The place, at least, is air-conditioned, making it one of Coachella’s best not-so-hidden gems.

 

On Friday, the Regrettes delivered a spirited set of ’60s-tinged pop with a punk rock edge. With band members ranging in age from 17 to 21, the local act makes the case that today’s young’uns haven’t completely abandoned the sounds of yore, all while putting a topical bent on songs that celebrate weirdness and individuality while tackling topics such as sexism and cultural divisiveness with a snarl. 

 

The following day, Priests put even more anger into their songs, which could veer from the good-time vibe of surf rock to scrappy, stuttering anthems aimed at confronting the listener. 

 

Yet whether opting for chaos or suddenly slipping into a tightly wound melody, the Washington, D.C., band follows the seemingly unpredictable whims of vocalist Katie Alice Greer, whose songs are ready to pick a fight with capitalism, the White House or even those who just endlessly pontificate.

 

Priests can immediately attract attention because Greer can sing with the best of ’em, but then her out-of-nowhere howls or rapid-fire sing-speak approach will take the songs down another, more jarring path — one that reflects the sound of opposition.

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