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COACHELLA ’08: Operation Desert Storm Begins

Lyndsey Parker
Maximum Performance

The Coachella Festival doesn't officially begin in earnest until today, Friday...but that of course didn't stop impatient revelers from getting the pre-party started on Thursday, with what has become a festival tradition: Filter magazine's annual Coachella kickoff bash.

Held in a "yacht club" which is somehow mysteriously located in the middle of a totally landlocked desert (party guests are practically blindfolded and then shuttle-bussed to the secret locale), the soiree is a literal oasis of free beer, Red Bull, swag baggage, and Filter back issues. It's the perfect calm before the real desert storm of Coachella day one.

Thursday night's Filter party featured DJ sets from members of indie-electro darlings Cut Copy, Moving Units, and Does It Offend You Yeah?, along with something rarely spotted on any dance floor outside of the desert: crowd-surfing. Truly evidence that Coachella bridges the worlds of alt-rock and techno as perhaps no other U.S. festival can.

Come back later Friday for reports on Coachella's first-day electronic acts (Aphex Twin, Fatboy Slim, Diplo) and rock bands (the Raconteurs, Breeders, Verve)...and in the meantime, enjoy these Filter pre-party pics:

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And check out the live webcast and highlights after the festival exclusively in the AT&T blue room April 25-27. For more info on Coachella, click here for the official site.

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