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Green Fireworks and Twister

The uplit palm trees around the Coachella Stage look like green fireworks. Interpol is playing a new song called “Mammoth.” People are still moving and holding their hands in the air even though they’ve stopped singing along, not knowing these new words. Daniel Kessler’s guitar moves back and forth between carefully picked delayed echoes and dry-drill distortion. The song builds in the middle, almost to collapse, where at that moment the only grin from singer Paul Banks that night can be seen. He seems happy with this new one.

“How are things on the West Coast?” are the words that open a song called “The Heinlich Maneuver,” a new title that elicits some laughter from the crowd when Banks shares it. A passed out woman is carried from the front and through to the back of the crowd. By the time Sam Fogarino throws his drum sticks at the end of “Not Even Jail,” some are left pondering how Carlos D. has gone from looking like a militant German to an extra from Deadwood. Maybe the Killers’ stylist has new clients?

There are people asleep on the lawn. Some are alone; others are couples in clumsy embrace. Some have blankets, other have just collapsed into a night nap directly on the grass. These are the people that missed the mushroom-shaped burka, wide as it was tall, similar in pattern and color to a Twister board. Bjork was inside it. As she worked her way through the new “Earth Intruders,” thousands were rapt, others were dreaming, the spotlights pointed into the sky looked like a path upwards. They’re all coming back tomorrow. GREGG LAGAMBINA / PHOTOS BY CHAD WADSWORTH