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All photos: Curtis Cartier/Seattle Weekly
The hunt for drugs at the Sahara Tent for many was hardly a secret.
There was a massive music festival


The 75 Greatest Things You Missed at Coachella This Year

coachella03 small.jpg
All photos: Curtis Cartier/Seattle Weekly
The hunt for drugs at the Sahara Tent for many was hardly a secret.
There was a massive music festival in Southern California this past weekend. Maybe you heard about it? Coach-something? Anyway, lots of stuff happened. I should know--I was there, man. And since covering the festival in any traditional way is nearly impossible for a single fanboy, I've arranged all the best things that went down into a list of sorts.

Keep in mind that all the shitty stuff like balls-hot heat and God-awful port-a-potties aren't "great things" on their own, but still add to the overall Coachella experience and are therefore included. But enough about that--here are the 75 greatest things you missed at Coachella in 2011. For those who went, please add ones I missed in the comment section.

1. Seven stages of music and more than 150 artists playing for three glorious days.

2. Random eruptions of cheering on the way to the parking lot.

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Omar Rodriguez-Lopez's new singer looks and acts a bit too much like his old one--because it is his old one.
3. Hour-long lines of cars to get to the parking lots.

4. A SHIT TON of people in Sonics jerseys.

5. Lauryn Hill dropping not one but two Fugees tracks.

6. A noticeable drop in the number of Native American hipster headdresses.

7. A noticeable increase in the number of Native American hipster hair extensions.

8. Cee Lo Green throwing a hissy fit on stage about having his set cut short (which wouldn't have happend if he'd shown up ON TIME).

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A shit ton of people come to Coachella.

9. Tutus. No, really. Tutus for men and women are in this year.

10. Way too many guys riding on people's shoulders (not a boob-flashing woman to be found).

11. The Chemical Brothers. Holy shit.

12. Triple-digit heat.

13. Half a dozen people (that I saw) getting hauled off by medics for heat-related sicknesses.

14. A guy singing with Omar Rodriguez-Lopez who sounds and dances exactly like Cedric Bixler-Zavala from The Mars Volta, but is not Cedric. UPDATE: Yeah, never mind, that was totally Cedric, sans 'fro.

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The Super-Soaker-wielding dudes in the Do-LaB were a godsend.

15. The greatest churros in the world. Hands down.

16. The Crystal Castles proving once again that their singer Alice Glass CANNOT sing live.

17. Nosaj Thing dropping an insane remix of Portishead's "Wandering Star."

18. Erykah Badu missing a "hovercraft" ride to play an extra couple tracks, only to have her mik cut off.

19. Dudes covering their passed-out friend head-to-toe with grass.

20. Broken Social Scene getting all kinds of sappy and nostalgic about being around for 11 years.

21. Fedde le Grand dropping a face-melting big-beat techno cut-up of Rage Against the Machine's "Killing in the Name."

22. Arcade Fire being everything they're cracked up to be.

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Kevin Drew from Broken Social Scene points me out in the crowd. Hi Kevin!

23. The most obscure acts often attracting the most "normal-looking" crowds.

24. Conor Oberst playing the most sober show he's possibly ever played with Bright Eyes . . . and killing it.

25. People having sex on the grass.

26. Don Letts spining records--something he's been doing for longer than most of the people in attendance have been alive.

27. Never feeling so happy to have a raver girl dressed as a fairy spray you with a squirt gun.

28. Port-a-Potties that during daytime reach inside temperatures of 140 degrees.

29. Neon Trees proving they have more songs than that "Animal" one.

30. Nine-dollar Heinekens that don't taste nearly as good as smuggled-in Jack Daniels.

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Finally, someone who's not a dude gets up on someone's shoulders.

31. Daedelus mixing something like a thousand songs into a 35-minute set.

32. A man walk out of the Sahara Tent, vomit on the grass while still dancing, then immediately go back in the tent and start raving again.

33. Security guards in the parking lot taking everyone's glass bottles of alcohol and hoarding them in their golf carts under the pretense that they were prohibited and needed to be "probably disposed of."

34. Arcade Fire releasing thousands of glowing beach balls into the audience and giving a whole lot of people souvenirs to take home.

35. Remote-controlled neon-colored sharks racing around the audience.

36. Thousands of girls in skimpy bathing suits.

37. Enough weed smoke hanging in the air during Wiz Khalifa's set to guarantee a contact high.

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Conor Oberst with Bright Eyes, delivering possibly his most sober set ever.

38. Tens of thousands of people who, despite all the booze, drugs, and differing attitudes, kept remarkably peaceful.

39. The dirtiest, sorest feet that 12 hours at an outside concert can bring (see last photo).

40. A massive room, completely lightproof except for four skylights in the ceiling that shine light down like beams from heaven and are used for "spiritual purposes."

41. The Aquabats being every bit as weird as you remember they were 10 years ago.

42. Sphongle unleashing techo-salsa Armageddon in the dance tent.

43. Watching Victoria's Secret model Alessandra Ambrosio do anything--in this case drinking gin and tonics in the VIP section.

44. The world's worst gyros. Seriously. Come on, guys.

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The "Spiritualized Room" was probably a good place to calm down from the throes of a bad LSD trip.

45. Kings of Leon saving a rather mundane performance with that age-old music-biz secret called pyrotechnics.

46. Really hot girls with really gnarly sweat stains.

47. Kanye West showing up on time for his set and swooping around the audience in a giant crane.

48. The Super Soaker-wielding stage hands in the Do LaB.

49. A new building set up near the entrance of the festival dedicated purely to serving chicken and waffles (and beer).

50. Heaps and heaps of trash.

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Things got weirder at night in the Sahara Tent.

51. Arguably the greatest outdoor sound system in existence.

52. The Sahara Tent.

53. Death From Above 1979's reunion show in which Sebastien Grainger completely demolished his drum kit in the baddest-ass mainstage show all weekend.

54. Trentemøller with a full band owning it at the Mojave Tent.

55. Ezra Koenig from Vampire Weekend playing a cameo with Chromeo.

56. Animal Collective making everyone in attendance wonder if someone had slipped them some acid.

57. The uniquely rank scent of grass, drugs, sweat, and joy that can only be found inside the dance tent on the third day of the festival.

58. An entire stage (The Oasis Dome) dedicated to bass music.

59. Leftfield proving just how much everyone has missed them.

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Daedelus doing whatever it is he does with his Monome.

60. Welsh DJ High Contrast annihilating the Oasis Dome with old-school drum & bass.

61. Police officers hanging out in groups of five or six and never moving all night.

62. Hundreds of penises drawn into the dust of parked cars' windows.

63. Julian Casablancas from the Strokes trying to be hardcore and asking "You motherfuckers ready for this!?"

64. Kode 9 throwing down the classics and being everyone's favorite dubstep uncle.

65. Awesome deals on vinyl in the Zia Records booth. I picked up Radiohead's Hail to the Thief double LP used for $20 and Ray Charles Modern Sounds in Country and Western Music for $8.

66. Kanye West crying onstage about how his set is "the most important show since my mom passed" and then singing about champagne and hoes. Actually, his set was pretty stellar.

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My feet after three days of wearing the sandals I never wear in Seattle.

67. Paul van Dyk proving that trance music can still be good.

68. One of the most gorgeous sunsets (Sunday) that you'll ever see.

69. Danny freaking DeVito.

70. Skrillex being awful and having Jonathan Davis from Korn onstage to help him do it.

71. Taking three of the most well-deserved showers you've ever had.

72. Spicy Pie pizza. Fuck yeah.

73. Drinking scalding-hot whiskey from a flask, but still loving it.

74. Empire of the Sun ripping apart the Outdoor Theater.

75. A weekend full of great music, shared with great friends.

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