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Coachella 2013 Friday Fieldnotes: Lindsay Lohan, Tears for Alt-J, the O.G. Yelling Goat

Johnny Marr / Photo by Erik Voake

This year the fest’s wristbands include a chip that must be scanned when you’re entering or leaving certain areas of the grounds. Being a music fan sometimes means feeling like a package of ground beef going through the supermarket check-out every few minutes.

By 2:30 p.m. and some of the bead-wearing babies were already PLUR-ed out, taking deep grass naps in completely inopportune locations (middle of path, middle of crowd, middle of Coachella).

Fashion update: Fake flower headbands are the new feather headdresses. Co-opting Native American culture is out, hippies are in. Hippies who are okay wearing pollutant-rich plastic representations of things that smell nice and help keep the world alive.

Photo by Chris Martins

Raise your hand if you were at Aesop Rock wondering where that pretty motherfucker with the gold teeth is at. Hope you like tangled metaphors about earthworms and watching Busdriver give a fan a haircut.

Jello Biafra’s Coachella soundcheck could double as a screaming goats audition tape. One dude yelling “oaahhhhh” over and over.

The Golf Wang fashion diaspora spreads ever further. Disembodied cat heads floating in space are a huge part of Coachella’s T-shirt campaign this year. Does Tyler, the Creator get residuals? Also: Earl’s probably not selling many Sweatshirts in this Coachella heat. Really, he’s actually selling sweatshirts with his face on them at the merch booth.

Coachella’s bill is stuffed with DJs, but the area of the festival where people were undeniably having the most fun remains the Do LaB, the little steampunky dance spot smack in the middle of the grounds, now in it’s ninth year. There stands a small DJ booth with a tiny stage, where a rotating cast of no-names drop the latest EDM nukes on a crowd of 50 flailing dancers. Stationed around this bubble of tripped-out humanity are a few Coachella employees with one job: continually spray these people with hoses. James Franco and Harmony Korine? Nowhere in sight.

TNGHT’s set has been their five (six?) awesome songs rationed out over 40 minutes of Kanye remixes. Where’s a rap super villain (calling Captain Murphy) when you finally need him to save the day?

TNGHT / Photo by Erik Voake

Girl on shoulders was weeping in joy at Alt-J. She must really like triangles too.

Ladies and gentlemen, Johnny Marr-issey! The former Smith did his best Moz impression thrice: “Stop Me If You Think You’ve Heard This One Before,” “There Is a Light That Never Goes Out,” and “How Soon Is Now?” Close your eyes and you don’t know the difference.

Four Tet broke in Coachella’s new Yuma tent proper with flurry of clicks, clack, bloops, and bass. Meanwhile, a dozen-plus disco balls blasted rays of freaking awesome onto the Bacchanalian boys and girls gathered below.

One thing about Friday at Coachella that didn’t us you until it hit us: The quotient of teens seems surprisingly low. Comparatively, last year’s Lollapalooza was dominated by high schoolers in ironic basketball jerseys and neon tanktops puking vodka-and-rum chugged out of water bottles into the streets.

Sparks to Coachella crowd: “Are all you chicks up for a metaphor?” It’s an aphrodisiac, you know.

Two slices of pizza added up to $14 in the VIP area.

Purity Ring ran late due to a prolonged beehive check. The Coachella crowd was as restless as a hornet’s nest.

Photo by Chris Martins

Spotted: Lindsay Lohan and her siblings meandering through the artist village, then heading off to see Blur.

T-shirt power rankings:
35,450. Surfer Blood’s Joy Division homage.

Notes by Chris Martins, Caryn Ganz, and Jordan Sargent