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Gang of Youths’ Tom Hobden remembers being stuck — literally — at first Coachella

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If you’re an up-and-coming artist making your Coachella debut this year, heed this advice from Gang of Youth‘s Tom Hobden: choose your footwear wisely.

The multi-instrumentalist played his first Coachella in 2009 as a member of the now-defunct indie band Noah and the Whale. Speaking with ABC Audio, Hobden shares that he remembers that performance “very well, for one particular reason.”

“It was one of those meltingly hot days,” he recalls.

Such is often the case in the desert of Indio, California, this time of year — especially during the daytime hours — but that didn’t stop Hobden from buying a fancy new pair of shoes for the occasion.

“I think we were on early in the afternoon,” Hobden shares. “And my shoes, I was wearing these really nice new shoes I’d bought, they must’ve had a slightly rubber sole, ’cause I found myself two or three songs in realizing that I couldn’t move my feet.”

“Part of my shoes had melted on the hot stage, and I was just stuck,” he laughs. “I had to do a sort of weird shimmy to release myself.”

Just as a piece of Hobden’s shoes may be permanently a part of Coachella’s Outdoor Theatre stage, that performance will always stick with him.

“I’ve got real fond memories of that,” Hobden says. “You always remember your first time you play a big festival like that. It’s special for those reasons.”

Coachella 2022 takes place April 15-17 and April 22-24. While Hobden and Gang of Youths aren’t playing this year, they’ll launch a U.S. tour April 21 in Madison, Wisconsin, in support of their new album, angel in realtime.

The Coachella lineup does include Billie Eilish, Arcade Fire, Måneskin, Phoebe Bridgers, Turnstile, The Regrettes, and Bishop Briggs, among others.

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