Limp Bizkit guitarist Wes Borland has confirmed he will be performing with Danny Elfman’s band when they take the stage at Coachella 2022.
Borland replaces Nine Inch Nails’ Robin Finck, who is otherwise engaged on NIN business, and was indeed recommended for the gig as electric guitar wrangler for hire by Finck himself.
Borland joins Elfman regular and fretboard pyrotechnician Nili Brosh, who, with Finck, helped light up Elfman’s epic solo album, Big Mess.
Elfman’s first solo album in decades, Big Mess is described by the Grammy and Emmy-winning composer as ‘chamber punk’, an anxious, industrial style that abuts metal and alternative rock.
Written and recorded during the pandemic, with Elfman holed up in his cabin with a bunch of guitars and a laptop, it’s a tense, nervous headache of an album, with songs animated by poorly digested pandemic anxieties and the ever-roiling crises in democratic politics.
Such is life, but it makes for great art. When speaking to GW back in June 2021, Elfman described Big Mess as a product of its time and a culmination of where his musical tastes have taken him over the past three decades.
“More and more, I tend to like extremes,” he said. “I either want to hear something strangely beautiful and abstract, atmospheric, or really intense, that just grabs me and holds me. I am a big fan of [Einstürzende] Neubauten, over in Berlin. Even though I can’t say their name properly I love their music. I love Tool. I love Nine Inch Nails.”
Elfman sees his role as writing the song and bringing noise and feedback, with Brosh and now Borland’s job to provide the technical firepower to complement it.
“If we play, Robin and Nili are great, and when you put me in it, it messes it up,” said Elfman. “That was kind of the sound I wanted. My guitar was the feedback and the messiness, and that all came out of me, and all of my vocals were recorded on this little handheld mic up in this room.”
Borland confirmed the news that he was Elfman’s Coachella pinch-hitter on Instagram, where he also shared a picture of his rig. It looks quite different to his Limp Bizkit setup, with a Diezel VH4 guitar amp and 2x12” speaker cabinet joined by a Line 6 HX Effects, DigiTech Whammy, Boss guitar tuner, and what looks like a Boss NS-2 Noise Suppressor.
He also looks to be running a pair of Boss DD-3 digital delay pedals – perhaps one short, one long – and a couple of pedals that readers with better eyesight will have to identify. You can check it out below.
Coachella (opens in new tab) takes place the weekends of April 15 to 17, and 22 to 24, and is headlined by Harry Styles and Billie Eilish.