With summer still months (and a daydream) away, the musically starved masses are getting a break this week with the HEAT Festival. UC Riverside is once again hosting this annual show and this year’s lineup looks as hot as last year’s—global warming not required! Travie McCoy, Lil Jon, Against Me!, Infected Mushroom, The Dirty Heads, Congorock, The Red Jumpsuit Apparatus, Party Crash, CC Sheffield, DJ Hyphy Crunk and Christian TV are among the rogues’ gallery of artists and genres, ranging from hip-hop to rap, reggae-rock to trance, electro to who-knows-what-else. The important part is that too-cool musicians are performing together (for the price of one!). Infected Mushroom, a band from Israel (Holy—Land?!), performed at Coachella in 2007. The Dirty Heads performed at the Vans Warped Tour in 2009. Travie McCoy . . . well he sang “Billionaire” with Bruno Mars, and that’s an awesome song! Lil Jon’s crunk-ness and dazzling “grill” is sure to give HEAT that vivacious flair. As for the other artists, I’m sure they’ll be awesome, too. So let’s rock this city with one of the most eccentric and vibrant music festivals (no disrespect, Coachella), the IE has to offer. This urban desert just got hotter!
HEAT Festival at the University of California, Riverside, 900 University Ave., Riverside, (951) 827-4403; heat.ucr.edu. Sat, Feb. 26. Tickets $44 general admission, $52 at the door.