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Lollapalooza 2016 Recap

  • Post Author
    by Web manager
  • Post Date
    Tue Aug 09 2016

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No matter how sunburned my shoulders became, or how sore my feet were, I am somewhat sad that Lollapalooza is over.  This year was the festivals 25 anniversary, and with all the surprise cameos, killer performances, and Harambe tributes Lollapalooza once again showed why guests have been coming back for years, and why it's one of the most successful music festivals in the country.  Here's my recap of the second half of the weekend.

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Saturday July, 30th

I started off my weekend with The Strumbellas, a Canadian indie rock/alternative country band which has risen to fame this past year with their hit single ‘Spirits.' The six-person band put on a lively performance early Saturday, and I especially enjoyed ‘We Don't know' and ‘Wild Sun.'  With the band's cheeky sense of humor and the presence of an electric violin (always a fun time) my Saturday was off to a great start.

The next performance was X Ambassadors.  I wasn't planning on seeing them, but I followed my friends, and I was happy I did so.  I knew more songs by them than I thought, and I was mildly surprised at how talented singer and guitarist Sam Harris is.  The show went from sentimental (‘Unsteady') to exhilarating (‘Jungle') and the band even brought out guest Jamie N Commons to help with a few songs.  Arguably the best part of the bands set was when they brought out Tom Morello to shred with the band.  I was extremely excited, and I was once again glad I stayed to watch the entire performance.

After a few interviews with bands that include Recess Monkey and Honeysuckle, I was able to catch Leon Bridges late afternoon set.  I enjoy the throwback feel of Bridge's music, and I, and his stage presence was classic as well.  The crowd was able to dance and sing along, and spirits were quite high after the long, hot day.  I enjoyed Bridges rendition of ‘Pony' by Ginuwine as well, and at the end, I gained a higher respect for Bridges and his appreciation for his craft.

As the day winded down, I was able to catch Two Door Cinema Club (a favorite band of mine) before I made my way across the park to catch Grimes.  Giving one of the best solo performances I have ever seen, Grimes put so much energy into her performance.  Whether it was Jumping across the stage, dancing around, or controlling the soundboard (all with sprained ankles mind you), she kept the crowd entertained.  Her rendition of ‘Ave Maria' was weirdly beautiful, and her catchy pop songs got the entire crowd dancing, with standouts that included ‘Venus Fly' and ‘Flesh Without Blood.'

The final concert of the day was the highly anticipated headliner Red Hot Chili Peppers.  Having toured with the festival back at its start in the 90's, it made perfect sense to bring the band back for its 25th anniversary.  From the start of their set, the band knew the crowd wanted to jam, and jam we all did.  The first three songs were ‘Can't Stop,' ‘Dani California,' and ‘Scar Tissue,' and the rest of the set was basically as many hits they could fit in 90 minutes.  The RHCP did not disappoint, and I was pretty thrilled to see one of the best performing acts touring today.

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Sunday, July 31st

Heading out a little bit later as compared to Saturday, the first show of the day on my schedule was California garage rock band FIDLAR.  Opening the show with their cover of Beastie Boys classic ‘Sabotage'—a very on point cover indeed—the band was set to prove rock is alive in well.   Powering through their biggest hits, including ‘No Waves' and “40oz. On Repeat,' I came to realize I haven't been to a true rock show in a while.  The guitar shredding and massive mosh pit were the perfect touches that helped create a true outdoor music festival experience, and I knew the rest of the day would not disappoint.

I was able to catch Honeysuckle's special guest performance at the Kidzapalooza stage, and the folk band put on a pleasant, relaxing set that paired perfectly with a midafternoon break on the grass.  After taking a short break, I headed to get a good spot for HAIM's evening performance.  The rock show experience did not diminish, for HAIM is a modern rock band who knows how to wow a crowd.  The band expressed their excitement to finally be playing Lollapalooza, and that excitement carried into their entire set.  Playing classics, such as ‘Forever' and ‘Don't Save Me' as well as a tribute cover of Prince's ‘I Would Die 4 U' the sister trio was the perfect choice to close out the festival Sunday evening.  The band even performed some of their new songs off their upcoming album, and to close out their set, the band brought a massive drum set where they each played a solo, and it was actually as epic as it sounds.

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The final show of the weekend was LCD Soundsystem.  Being a once in a lifetime opportunity, I was extremely excited to see the band performing live, especially after having broken up a few years back.  Creating some of the most danceable songs of all time, LCD got the crowd on their feet and ended the festival with an epic dance party.  The light show, graphics, and huge disco ball added to the party feel, and I truly enjoyed the fast paced rendition of ‘Daft Punk Is Playing At My House.'  They slowed down the show during James Murphy's ode to New York in “New York, I Love You But You're Bringing Me Down' but brought the tempo back up for ‘Dance Yrself Clean.'  Due to the fact that I had to catch the 10:35pm Metra—darn you Sunday train times—I had to leave during their final song, which of course was ‘All My Friends,' a perfect ending to the bands spectacular closing set.

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As the weekend came to a close and as I was dancing my way out of Grant Park Sunday evening, I couldn't help but smile and look to the Chicago skyline in appreciation of Lollapalooza and all of the festivals glory.

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LOLLAPALOOZA

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