Doja Cat review, Coachella 2022: Massive guitars and mega pyro make for the flashiest rock show of the weekend

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Doja Cat proves she’s as much rock’n’roll sensation as Tiktok triumph after Coachella show on Sunday (17 April)   (Getty Images for Coachella)
Doja Cat proves she’s as much rock’n’roll sensation as Tiktok triumph after Coachella show on Sunday (17 April) (Getty Images for Coachella)

With her first Grammy win in the bag, and this month’s pair of prestigious Coachella appearances, now seems a very strange time for Doja Cat to be retiring.

However, that’s just what the Los Angeles artist said she was going to do earlier this year, after she changed her Twitter username to “I quit” on 25 March over criticism from her Paraguayan fans.

Her majestic show at Coachella on Sunday (17 April), however, is proof positive that getting out of music is the last thing this genre-skipping, near-perfect pop star should be doing.

She arrives to a wailing guitar solo – and fits in twice as many costume changes as Megan Thee Stallion managed last night – to deliver a full bells and whistles performance. It feels like a fitting riposte to those wondering where the big rock bands were on the bill this year.

Doja Cat is as much a rock’n’roll sensation as she is a Tik-Tok triumph. A somewhat corny Sunset Strip stereotype of a “rawk dude”, complete with denim cut offs, shades and long blond hair, accompanies her on 2021’s addictive “Woman” but somehow it works. Perhaps because here – in the state the birthed Red Hot Chili Peppers – such earnest showmanship isn’t immediately met with eye rolls.

Things get heavier still when rapper Rico Nasty joins her for the industrial hip hop of “Tia Tamera”, while Doja’s fondness for outfits that pay tribute to leather daddy bondage wear and flaming pyro make it seem more and more like we’re actually at a full throttle metal show. But it’s not just the heavy stuff that Doja races through in less than an hour.

Barrelling through the genres, she also gives us dubby house, Bjork-inspired electronics, Sade-style slow jams and Kate Bush-worthy weirdness. She even debuts the flashy “Vegas”, her “Hound Dog” sampling track from Baz Luhrmann’s upcoming Elvis biopic, alongside “Kiss Me More”.

Retire now? Doja Cat’s only just getting started.

You can follow live updates from day three of the free-spirited music extravaganza here.

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