Fans who go to the annual Coachella Valley Music & Arts Festival generally know what they're going to take home with them when they leave: a case of sunburn, exhaustion, a few new friends, and the bragging rights to say you were there when a legendary performance (Rage Against the Machine in 1999, Prince in 2008), takes place.
This year, some festival-goers can add more tangible souvenirs of the event, assuming they can make room in their cars for giant bouncy orbs that change color.
The balls came courtesy of Saturday's headliners, the Arcade Fire, who at the end of their set released an avalanche of the huge orbs into the crowd from a box above the stage.
The balls began changing colors — sometimes in unison, sometimes independently — and, wrote Charley Rogulewski at Spinner, "made the audience look like another one of Coachella's glow-in-the-dark art installations."
The Canadian Grammy winners' high-tech props also quickly became one of the most prized souvenirs of another hot, crowded and star-studded day at the Empire Polo Club in Indio, in the desert east of Los Angeles.
If day two of the festival didn't have quite the jaw-dropping surprise of a deejay set by Paul McCartney, or the entertainment value of an angry Cee Lo Green showing up late and then storming off the stage mad at organizers who made him cut his set short, it did have the heat and the hipsters and the hellacious musical lineup typical of Coachella.
Headliners on Saturday included Arcade Fire, Animal Collective, Scissor Sisters and Raphael Saadiq, while the presentations ranged from the extravagance of the Australian electronic duo Empire of the Sun (right) to the folk-based simplicity of Oscar-winners the Swell Season.
Danny DeVito, Katy Perry and Kate Bosworth were back, while Kirsten Dunst (left) showed up, as did Rihanna. The Daily Mail also has photos of Leonardo DiCaprio, David Hasslehoff, Diane Kruger and Joshua Jackson in the crowd (or, rather, in the VIP section).
They came to see a bill of 60-plus acts that also included post-punk icons Big Audio Dynamite and Wire (playing, sadly for '80s fans, at almost the same time), along with Broken Social Scene, Elbow, Yelle, Bright Eyes, Suede, the Kills, the Foals, M.I.A. protégé Rye Rye and a what was by all reports an ecstatically weird set from Lil B.
Not long after the raucous Gypsy punk band Gogol Bordello sprayed the front row with wine during the song "Start Wearing Purple," country-inflected songstress Jenny Lewis took the stage with her beau and fellow songwriter Jonathan Rice to deliver an understated set that August Brown at the Pop&Hiss blog described as "like watching an indie rock version of 'The Thin Man.'"
Technical problems surfaced occasionally, and the organizers continued to insist that artists keep to their intricate schedule.
Erykah Badu was forced to wrap up earlier than she wanted on Saturday, after a loose, playful set that was reportedly plagued with sound glitches.
More seriously, word spread that a young woman had tried to leap from a gondola on the festival's Ferris wheel, only to be saved by a man who grabbed her legs and held her.
The Indio Fire Department confirmed that "a young lady mentally altered on substances" was taken away for further care. (The L.A. Times has a report — though given the chaotic festival atmosphere, details are sketchy.)
And one security problem involved an artist: Tyler the Creator from the hip-hop collective Odd Future Wolf Gang Kill Them All (who played on Friday) had an altercation with a security guard and got kicked out, according to his tweet.
The festival concludes on Sunday with Kanye West, the Strokes, PJ Harvey, She Wants Revenge, Duran Duran and Neon Trees, among others.
(Photos by Getty Images. Arcade Fire, Kirsten Dunst: Christopher Polk. Empire of the Sun: Luke Steele. Erykah Badu: Kevin Winters.)