Almost Acoustic Christmas: Photos, recaps, interviews, and more!

All weekend long we’ll be webcasting live from the KROQ Coachella House. Watch the webcast here.

Nestled in a private oasis just blocks away from the festival grounds lies the KROQ Coachella House – complete with pool, BBQ, beautiful women and some pretty huge bands.


Blues-rock duo The Black Keys are one of the biggest rock bands in the world right now. They’ve been together for “fifteen years,” but “ten years officially” according to frontman Dan Auerbach when he joined Stryker on the interview couch.

When asked if there was ever a moment when The Black Keys didn’t want to play music, Auerbach replied, “No, never, we’ve always had a lot of fun playing music. That’s why we’re still together.”

“Everything that I’ve done in the last ten years has been sort of based around music,” the frontman continued. “All the people I meet is because I play music. It’s really a kind of a crazy life.”

Although Auerbach admitted that the band “have a couple weeks booked to go into the studio in a few months just to see what happens,” the Tennessee-based musician has been working with other artists like Costa Mesa’s The Growlers, Jeff the Brotherhood, and Los Angeles’ Hanni El Khatib.

When Stryker asked Auerbach why he liked living in Nashville so much, the Akron, Ohio-born musicians said that he “didn’t want to move to a big city” because he “grew up in a small town,” but “wanted that feel except with more options.”

Auerbach talked about the “meat and three” BBQ option, the “magical” Bourbon well that you throw a “quarter” into and “get ripped,” the cheap gas, and the “free Wonderbread.”

And when asked what his first music purchase was?

“Kriss Kross or Rico Suave or something.”


The twilight is creeping on the Coachella Valley and the hellish winds are picking up; so much so, that British band, Band of Skulls, might not play their hit single “The Devil Takes Care of His Own” on the stage. The song was recently on Stryker’s 4:20 and the Joq got to sit down with the band, starting off the interview asking them if they would rather play in the scorching heat or have mud thrown at them to which the band (who played Coachella in 2010 for the first time) answered that each had their own benefits.

Bassist Emma Richardson was asked what it was like to be a girl in a band with two other guys to which she answered, “It’s fun actually. You’d be surprised.” Frontman Russell Marsden chimed in, “There’s an added politeness. The humor stays polite. There’s a level of decorum which is maintained.”

Stryker speculated whether or not the band would play, saying he didn’t want them to get electrocuted, and Marsden said cheekily, “Could be a dramatic ending.”


wallpaperjump KROQ Coachella House Day 1   M83, Kasabian, Arctic Monkeys, Band Of Skulls, The Black Keys And More

Wallpaper (Photo: Faith Ann Young)

“What do you call that? Circus disco moombahton hip-hop?,” said an audience member after the awesome, wild Wallpaper. show. “No, maybe Tropicalia electro-hop,” replied her friend. “Whatever you call it, it was f**king great,” replied the audience member.

After frontman Reed exclaimed that “the best alcohol is free alcohol,” Wallpaper. brought the wind gods of the Coachella Valley to their knees with a lively set complete with choreographed dancing, neon pants with Palm Springs designs, metallic boots, and crazy conga drumming while playing “2 Pair of Shades,” “F**king Best Song Ever,” and “Stupidfacedd.”

A tornado burst of wind rushed through the audience mid-set and Reed took it like a star joking hat he was “definitely chewing on dirt,” and that “this is gonna be our last show of all time before we get struck by lightning.”


Stryker sat down with Oakland-grown Wallpaper. a/k/a Ricky Reed of “Stupidfacedd” fame talked to KROQ’s Stryker. When Reed was asked what some of his favorite pop albums, he said, “Just outside of the last twenty years, the early Michael Jackson records. I know the Thriller record like the back of my hand.”

For Reed, writing a song is about hearing the unique in the normal, “collecting special things from the ether and putting them in there.”

“Writing a song is all about capturing things that you know are special,” Reed elaborated, saying that he wasn’t totally against collaboration but the best music is heartfelt.

Stryker then asked Reed “the best questions that anyone ever asked” him: whether he’d hang out with Oaktown 357 or Rappin’ 4-Tay. Reed’s chose 4-Tay.


arcticmonkeys385house KROQ Coachella House Day 1   M83, Kasabian, Arctic Monkeys, Band Of Skulls, The Black Keys And More

Arctic Monkeys’ Alex Turner (Photo: Faith Ann Young)

Cheeky lead singer from Alex Turner from British band Arctic Monkeys played a melodic acoustic set in an atmospheric situation that he’s probably well-acquainted with: in a chill drizzle. Turner quipped that is shouldn’t be raining and then played a 3-song set on acoustic guitar of “Reckless Serenade,” “Love is a Laserquest,” and “Suck It and See.” At the end his set, the mellow Turner looked at the audience, thanked them, and said, “and the suns even put his hat back on.”


kat kasabian 385 KROQ Coachella House Day 1   M83, Kasabian, Arctic Monkeys, Band Of Skulls, The Black Keys And More

Kat with Kasabian // Photo: Cody Black

Kasabian was the second band to stop by the KROQ Coachella House. While his bandmates finished setting up for their performance, frontman Sergio Pizzorno made fun of the plastic rain protection on the patio furniture and his tour manager with little T-Rex-like hands.

Kat commented on the band’s fifteenth anniversary and the fact that few know the origins of their name. Linda Kasabian, was one of the Manson family. Sergio said, “She has heard us. She said she was pleasantly surprised.”


kat m83 385 KROQ Coachella House Day 1   M83, Kasabian, Arctic Monkeys, Band Of Skulls, The Black Keys And More

Kat Corbett with M83’s Anthony Gonzalez // Photo: Cody Black

First to stop by the house was the man behind M83, Anthony Gonzalez.

When asked what posters adorned his walls as a child, Anthony surprised the crowd with his response. “I grew up with posters of Iron Maiden hanging on my walls.” When asked about his latest album Hurry Up, We’re Dreaming, Gonzalez responded “I just wanted to have fun on this album…and play with all my toys.”

As Kat so eloquently put it, Gonzalez “brought the saxy back.”

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