Andrew H. Walker, Getty Images Nine days after the deadly tornado that touched…
- Posted on Jul 7th 2010 4:30PM by Chandler Levack
"The space bubble is at its worst when it's cold and plasticky," Coyne says. "It takes a couple of hours to blow it up, and these things can get holes. To spend your time flying around on top of people's heads, you've got to have a good bubble."
Coyne says the image came to him in a dream and that he spent years on a quest to realize the experience -- until he stumbled upon the Waterball model, designed by Canadian inventor Charles Jones for children to float on top of water to keep fit. He premiered the bubble at Coachella in 2004 and laughs at how routine the fantastical performance has become. "I was so scared when we first started doing it in concert because I didn't think the audience would let me get away with it. Now I do it every night!"
A festival veteran ever since his band hit the Lollapalooza side stage in 1994, Coyne says "There's something about the summertime when you're young, where they're the times of your life." An encounter with a giant, drugged-up naked man could, however, put a serious damper on one's festival experience.
"We were just at Bonnaroo... watching LCD Soundsystem play, and all of a sudden this giant naked guy, completely zonked and freaked out and probably on some kind of acid, ran up on the stage," he recounts. "There were all these big security guards pummelling him with such violence I thought he might die, even though the guy didn't seem to notice. It was such a terrifying experience, I still want to tweet 'naked guy at Bonnaroo' and make sure that he's okay."
Should this be a warning to stay sober at a Flaming Lips concert? "Of course I don't want to say, 'Don't do drugs at a summer musical festival'," Coyne says. "For every fat naked guy who's having a horrible time, 50,000 [people] are feeling amazing."