Entries tagged with: Pitchfork Festival

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Pitchfork Festival 2015 settimes

We're about a month away from the 2015 Pitchfork Music Festival which happens July 17-19 in Union Park, which includes performances from Sleater-Kinney, Wilco, Future Islands, Run the Jewels, Courtney Barnett, Chance the Rapper, Panda Bear, Todd Terje & Olsens, Caribou and lots more across three stages. They've just announced schedule / set times, which you can peruse below.

Three-day passes are sold out, but daily tickets are still available.

Continue reading "2015 Pitchfork Festival: daily schedules announced"

Pitchfork FEst
photo: Pitchfork Fest 2014 (more by Dominick Mastrangelo)

Tickets are on sale for Pitchfork 2015, which runs from Friday, July 17 through Sunday, July 19 at Chicago's Union Park. "A limited number of three-day passes are currently available for $150 and single day passes available for $65. The initial batch of three day passes will include a free one-year subscription to The Pitchfork Review (a $49.99 value). Our three-day passes will sell out very quickly, so we encourage you to act fast:"

photos by Dominick Mastrangelo

Deafheaven / Perfect Pussy
Perfect Pussy

Prior to playing Pitchfork Fest on Sunday (7/20), Deafheaven and Perfect Pussy played one of several sold-out festival aftershows at Bottom Lounge on Friday (7/18). The pair were joined by local rippers Pink Frost in what was perhaps a more suitable environment for the output of these bands than the glaring sun and heat of the festival. Pictures from Bottom Lounge are in this post.

More pictures and Deafheaven's complete setlist lie after the jump...

Continue reading "Deafheaven, Perfect Pussy & Pink Frost played Bottom Lounge (pics, setlist)"

photos by Dominick Mastrangelo

Slowdive / Deafheaven / Perfect Pussy
2014 Pitchfork Festival - Day 3
2014 Pitchfork Festival - Day 3
2014 Pitchfork Festival - Day 3

Shoegaze legends Slowdive played their first U.S. show as a reunited band this Sunday. While the crowd seemed to mostly be waiting for headliner Kendrick Lamar, who was playing on the same stage a few hours later, their true fans did make themselves known, responding enthusiastically to classics off of their unforgettable 1993 release, Souvlaki. Slowdive lived up to the precedent set by fellow reunited UK shoegazers, My Bloody Valentine, playing a loud, intense set. Songs like "When the Sun Hits," gained a heavy, aggressive edge, giving Deafheaven a run for its money in respect to ferocity. Softer tunes like "Alison" lulled the crowd into a collective bliss. - [Arielle Gordon]

Pitchfork Fest 2014 closed things out this past Sunday (7/20) with sets from Kendrick Lamar, Slowdive, Grimes, Perfect Pussy, Speedy Ortiz, Deafheaven, Earl Sweatshirt, and more. We already posted some words and pictures about day 3 over at BrooklynVegan, but here are some more pictures for your viewing pleasure.

Also on BrooklynVegan // BV Chicago are pics and reviews from the other two days. Day two are HERE and HERE, and day one are HERE and HERE. More day 3 pics below...

Continue reading "Pitchfork Fest 2014 day 3 in pics: Grimes, Slowdive, Deafheaven, Schoolboy Q, Perfect Pussy & more"

photos by Dominick Mastrangelo

Neneh Cherry / Giorgio Moroder / hula hooper
2014 Pitchfork Festival - Day 1
2014 Pitchfork Festival - Day 1
2014 Pitchfork Festival - Day 1

Alt-rock legend Beck played a career-spanning set with heavy emphasis on his most recent records. He didn't shy away from the hits, pleasing both longtime fans and casual listeners. Opening with the classic Odelay cut "Devil's Haircut", Beck and his band were possibly the tightest act of the entire day. Particularly exciting was his tribute to fellow performer Giorgio Morodor, a cover of Donna Summer's Morodor-produced hit, "I Feel Love." Beck kept the crowd excited for his entire ninety-minute headlining set with a palpable energy during "Loser" and a particularly rousing rendition of "Where It's At." [-Arielle Gordon]
Pitchfork Festival is currently on its third and final day in Chicago's Union Park. It kicked off this past Friday (7/18) and we posted pictures and wrote about that at BrooklynVegan (where the above quote is from). Here's a second set of pictures of day 1.

UPDATE: Day 2 pics are up HERE and HERE and Day 3 are HERE. Stay tuned for day 3. More day 1 pics below...

Continue reading "Pitchfork Fest 2014 day 1 in pics: Hundred Waters, Neneh Cherry, Avey Tare's Slasher Flicks, Sun Kil Moon & more"

Earl Sweatshirt at GovBall 2014 (more by Dana (distortion) Yavin)
Earl Sweatshirt

Earl Sweatshirt has cancelled the remainder of his tour. The young rapper cited exhaustion as his reasoning for the cancellation on his Twitter account this morning, saying:

I sincerely apologize to any of y'all who planned to see me at these next couple festival dates. Due to lack of self maintenance I had to press eject on the tour. I am physically and mentally at the end of my rope. I weigh a fraction of what I'm supposed to and without synergy between the body and mind there is nothing. No point in performing if it's not the best show I can give every time. Now that I am home I can get healthy and get this album out to y'all while it's still fresh.
UPDATE: Though it was initially reported that the affected dates included his appearance at Chicago's Pitchfork Festival, Pitchfork now confirms he will still be playing. Metro also confirmed on their twitter that he's also still playing there on 7/19 with Domo Genesis and Mick Jenkins.

Pitchfork Festival (July 18-20 in Union Park) has had cancellations from The Julie Ruin (due to illness), DJ Rashad (due to his tragic passing in late April), and Death Grips (due to them being Death Grips).

Liars @ Austin Psych Fest (more by Tim Griffin)

Pitchfork Festival 2014 takes place next weekend in Union Park (July 18-20) and there are also a handful of fest aftershows at various venues throughout the city. One brand new late-night option is FREE SHOW at The Mid on July 18 featuring Liars with Vatican Shadow and Dave P. & Sammy Slice. You must RSVP for entry (21+ only).

Check out a recent Liars KEXP live session below...

Continue reading "Liars & Vatican Shadow playing The Mid during Pitchfork Fest"

Death Grips

Death Grips broke up today and cancelled shows, including Fun Fun Fun Fest (who responded) and Pitchfork Fest who have yet to officially respond or announce a replacement. Who should they get?

Death Grips were also set to open the Nine Inch Nails and Soundgarden tour which hits Tinley Park, IL's First Midwest Bank Amphitheatre on July 24. Trent Reznor is not sure why he bothered giving them a chance.

Deafheaven @ Sasquatch 2014 (more by Chris & Rae Graham)

Pitchfork Music Festival 2014 is just a month away (July 18-20), and a bunch of fest aftershows have now been announced. There are a few slated to take place around the corner from Union Park at Bottom Lounge, and others at Schubas and Lincoln Hall.

Here are your late-night show options...

July 18
Deafheaven, Perfect Pussy @ Bottom Lounge
FKA Twigs @ Bottom Lounge (Upstairs)
Wild Beasts, Mutual Benefit @ Lincoln Hall
Cloud Nothings, The Wytches @ Schubas

July 19
Dum Dum Girls, Ex Hex, Speedy Ortiz @ Bottom Lounge
Real Estate, Peter Matthew Bauer @ Lincoln Hall
DIIV, Lodro, Regal Degal @ the Empty Bottle

July 20
Majical Cloudz, Hundred Waters @ Lincoln Hall

Tickets for ALL Pitchfork Festival aftershows (linked above) go on sale this Friday (6/20) at noon CST.

Pitchfork Festival 2013 (more by James Richards IV)

As you may know, the 2014 Pitchfork Music Festival happens from July 18-20 in Chicago's Union Park with a stacked lineup of Beck, Kendrick Lamar, Neutral Milk Hotel, Grimes, St. VIncent, Slowdive, Giorgio Moroder, Sun Kil Moon, Cloud Nothings, Deafheaven, Perfect Pussy, Speedy Ortiz and many more. The set times were just announced and you can check those out below.

3-day passes are sold out, but you can still grab single day tickets.

Continue reading "Pitchfork Festival 2014 set times"


In February, Neneh Cherry returned with her first solo album in 18-years. Blank Project, which was produced by Four Tet, features Cherry's commanding voice front and center. Today, she's shared a Jean-Baptiste Mondino-directed video for the LP standout "Everything." You can check out the clip at the bottom of this post.

Cherry has also been added to the 2014 Pitchfork Music Festival -- she'll appear on Friday, July 18. The performance will be her second-ever in North America. Single-day tickets are still available.

All Neneh Cherry dates and her new video for "Everything" lie after the jump...

Continue reading "Neneh Cherry shares new video (watch it here), added to Pitchfork Festival 2014"


The Haxan Cloak -- aka London producer/composer Bobby Krlic -- has announced that he'll be embarking on his first-ever US tour this spring. The very brief May run includes a performance at Lincoln Hall on May 14 and tickets are on sale now. Krlic will also play the 2014 Pitchfork Music Festival on Friday, July 18.

The Haxan Cloak's most recent effort, Excavation, hit stores in April of 2013 via Tri Angle Records. It's chock-full of unrelenting sub-bass, jagged beats, and horror film-like noise flourishes. You can take a listen to the LP cut "The Mirror Reflecting (Part 2)" at the bottom of this post and/or stream the album in its entirety via Spotify/Rdio.

All Haxan Cloak dates and that song stream lie after the jump...

Continue reading "The Haxan Cloak playing Lincoln Hall on first-ever US tour"

Pitchfork Festival 2013 (more by James Richards IV)

As discussed, the 2014 Pitchfork Music Festival is slated to take place from July 18-20 in Chicago's Union Park. The fests initial lineup included Beck, Neutral Milk Hotel, Kendrick Lamar, tUnE-yArDs, Sharon Van Etten, Grimes, Slowdive, and more, and St. Vincent, Danny Brown, Avey Tare's Slasher Flicks, Schoolboy Q, Cloud Nothings, Deafheaven, Perfect Pussy, Jon Hopkins, Majical Cloudz, Speedy Ortiz, SZA, DJ Rashad and DJ Spinn, Hundred Waters, Isaiah Rashad, Twin Peaks, and others have now been added to the festival.

UPDATE: just a month after this lineup was posted, DJ Rashad tragically passed away. Rest in Peace Rashad.

Festival Passes and single-day tickets are still available, and we've also got a few pairs of three-day passes to give away!

The full festival lineups-by-day and contest details can be found below...

Continue reading "St. Vincent, Schoolboy Q, Cloud Nothings, Deafheaven, more added to Pitchfork Festival 2014 (lineup, win tix!)"

Pitchfork Fest 2013 (more by James Richards IV)

As discussed, the 2014 Pitchfork Music Festival is slated to take place from July 18-20 in Chicago's Union Park. They've now revealed the festival's initial lineup, which includes Neutral Milk Hotel (who just played the Riv), Tune-Yards, Kendrick Lamar, Grimes, the reunited Slowdive, Beck, Sun Kil Moon, Sharon Van Etten, The Julie Ruin, and more. Festival passes and single-day tickets are still available.

Check out the Pitchfork Fest 2014 initial lineups-by-day below...

Continue reading "Pitchfork Fest 2014 initial lineup: Neutral Milk Hotel, Tune-Yards, Kendrick Lamar, Grimes, Slowdive & more"

Pitchfork Festival 2013 (more by James Richards IV)

The 2014 Pitchfork Music Festival is slated to take place from July 18-20 in Chicago's Union Park. Early bird tickets and three-day passes ($60; $110) are on sale now.

Stay tuned for more information.

Nick CavENick CavE

Nick Cave & the Bad Seeds just announced a big summer tour that suspiciously doesn't include a Chicago date, but does end in Toronto on 7/31, which makes Lollapalooza (8/1-8/3) seem really likely. The July dates make Pitchfork Fest seem possible too. They're all listed below...

Nick Cave's last tour with Sharon Van Etten hit Chicago Theatre in April.

The above-pictured record is Nick Cave's next release, Live From KCRW, which will be out on double vinyl and CD for Record Store Day 2013 Black Friday (11/29)

Continue reading "Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds playing Lollapalooza? or Pitchfork?"

photos by Nate "Igor" Smith

King Dude // Nones at Cobrafest on 7.21.2013
Cobrafest 2013 @ Cobra Lounge - 7/19/2013
Cobrafest 2013 @ Cobra Lounge - 7/19/2013

Cobrafest 2013 finished off Sunday (7/21) with performances by King Dude, White Mystery, Rainbow Gun Show, and Nones. You've already seen pics from Day 1 and Day 2 of Sailor Jerry's Cobrafest 2013, and pictures from Day 3 are in this post. More below...

Continue reading "Cobrafest 2013 day 3 pics: King Dude, White Mystery, Rainbow Gun Show, and Nones"

photos by Nate "Igor" Smith

Growlers // tattoos at Cobrafest 2013 on 7.20
Cobrafest 2013 @ Cobra Lounge - 7/19/2013
Cobrafest 2013 @ Cobra Lounge - 7/19/2013

Sailor Jerry's annual free Cobrafest was back for round two at Cobra Lounge during the 2013 Pitchfork Music Festival. Their Saturday night (7/20) lineup featured Growlers, Denney & The Jets, and Toxie, plus lots of free tattoos. We've got pictures from Day 2 of Cobrafest 2013 in this post, and if you missed our first round of pics from Day 1, make sure to check them out HERE.

More from Day 2 of Cobrafest 2013 below...

Continue reading "Cobrafest 2013 day 2 pics: The Growlers, Denny and the Jets, Toxie & more"

photos by Nate "Igor" Smith

The Bronx at Cobrafest 2013 on 7.19.2013
Cobrafest 2013 @ Cobra Lounge - 7/19/2013
Cobrafest 2013 @ Cobra Lounge - 7/19/2013

Sailor Jerry's annual free Cobrafest returned to Cobra Lounge during the 2013 Pitchfork Music Festival. Their Friday night (7/19) lineup featured The Bronx, The People's Temple, Habibi, and Thing, not to mention free tattoos courtesy of the rum company named after a famous tattoo artist. We've got pictures from Day 1 of Cobrafest 2013 in this post. More below...

Continue reading "Cobrafest 2013 day 1 pics: The Bronx, The People's Temple, Habibi, Thing & lots of tattoos"

photos by Jeff Ryan

Trail of Dead / Ume at Double Door on 7.18.2013
And You Will Know Us By The Trail Of Dead @ Double Door - 7/18/2013
UME @ Double Door - 7/18/2013

Before the 2013 Pitchfork Festival began, fest act ...And You Will Know Us By The Trail of Dead came to town early with killer tourmates Ume for a pre-show at Double Door on Thursday, July 18. Australia/Los Angeles-based Red Paintings opened the show, and we've got a full set of pictures in this post.

More can be found after the jump...

Continue reading "Trail of Dead, Ume & Red Paintings played Double Door (pics)"

photos by James Richards IV & Cory Dewald

R. Kelly / Sky Ferreira
Pitchfork Festival - Day 3 - 7/21/2013
Pitchfork Festival - Day 3 - 7/21/2013

You've already seen pictures and reviews from Day 1 (Part 1), Day 1 (Part 2), Day 2 (Part 1), Day 2 (Part 2), Day 3 (Part 1), and here's Part Two of our Day 3 Pitchfork Music Festival coverage. It includes R Kelly, M.I.A., Lil B, Sky Ferreira, and more.

Our Part Two pictures from Day 3 of Pitchfork Festival 2013 continue below...

Continue reading "Pitchfork Festival day 3 pics (part 2): R. Kelly, M.I.A., Lil B, Sky Ferreira & more"

photos by Cory Dewald & James Richards
words by Zach Pollack & Milos Markicevic

EL-P / Foxygen's "climbin'" Sam France
Pitchfork Festival - Day 3 - 7/21/2013
Pitchfork Festival - Day 3 - 7/21/2013

Pitchfork Festival 2013 wrapped up on Sunday afternoon (7/21) in Union Park. The final day of the three-day fest was mostly about hip-hop and R&B -- R. Kelly, TNGHT, MIA, Lil B, EL-P, Killer Mike, and more. That said, there were also some rock offerings, and you can check out our thoughts and of course pictures below. Pictures and reviews from Day 1 (Part 1), Day 1 (Part 2), Day 2 (Part 1), and Day 2 (Part 2) are all up.

This year's festival was a break through gig for Chicago native Tree. Accompanied by three backup singers, a DJ, an additional MC, and a live drummer, Tree was quick to make a good first impression on the early Sunday crowd. Tracks off of his recent mixtape got die-hard fans rapping along while others joined in by collectively "putting their hands up" and moving to the drum beat. The female backup vocalist provided some beautiful soulful melodies alongside the brutally honest raps, and the drummer kept perfect time throughout the set. Near the end, the backing MC picked up a stack of thin sleeved CDs of Sunday School II: When Church Lets Out and flung them into the crowd. People devoured them. It didn't look like a single disc had managed to hit the ground. -MM

Foxygen frontman Sam France burst onto the stage like an ADHD kid that had taken a break from his Ritalin and proceeded to flail about a la young Mick Jagger. Behind him, the band played while he sang and later fake half-collapsed in front of his keyboard. Growing bored with the instrument he then ran and climbed the stage's rig ladder but quickly changed his mind half way and dropped back down. In between songs he thanked Red Bull, the festival's ATM machines(?), and Batman for being at the show. Alongside the theatrics, the band played their popular 60s psychedelic rock-influenced songs to a huge crowd, probably the biggest I had seen in that early afternoon time slot all weekend. -MM

I arrived at Union Park slightly late on Sunday afternoon, and that unfortunately meant missing Tree. By the time I got there, Autre Ne Veut were a few songs into their set on the Blue Stage. Awesomely, I walked over just in time to catch "Counting," one of the best pop/R&B tracks of the year so far. Arthur Ashin's strong falsetto was 110% on-point, and the band sounded great too. -ZP

After a bit of Autre Ne Veut's pop goodness, I headed over to the Green Stage to catch Killer Mike. R.A.P. Music was one of the strongest hip-hop releases of 2012, and Mike has moved forward in leaps and bounds since his early days. He kicked things off with the LP's opening track, "Big Beast." The line "Pow mother fucker, pow" is especially poignant at 2PM on a Sunday afternoon. Mike really did go off though, and followed that song up with the great "Untitled." He also spoke about violence in Chicago, and the little things we can all be doing to help counteract that, such as getting to know your neighbors. He did as much talking as songs he played, and normally that might be annoying, but Mike's got something profound to say about many things. -ZP

There were other sets between Killer Mike and EL-P, but I decided it would be slightly sacrilege to go from Mike to anything else but Jamie. EL had a fairly large crowd, and ripped through a few songs from Cancer 4 Cure. After maybe four of five numbers he goes, "Listen, would it be cool if I started over again? I'm gonna go get my big friend and we'll pretend this never happened." Killer Mike came out and the energy throughout the crowd turned electric almost instantly. The Run the Jewels portion of EL's set was by far the most high-energy performance I had seen all weekend. -ZP

One of the last sets of the day I was interested in catching that didn't involve any irony/nostalgia (looking at you, R. Kelly), was Waxahatchee at 3:45PM. Aside from a barely-countable few songs at SXSW, the only time I had seen Katie Crutchfield and co. was at Permanent Records back in March. It was cool to see her on such a big stage, with an overflowing crowd who knew all the words, just like I do. Crutchfield performed material from this year's fantastic Cerulean Salt, as well as a few cuts from 2012's American Weekend. As great as Cerulean Salt is, Crutchfield's tunes are much more punk live and it's definitely something worth seeing. -ZP

Yo La Tengo's mood seemed to have been affected by the rain clouds that formed during their set. After they completed their first song, it began to gently rain and from there on out the band proceeded to play some of their most mellow songs. The rain didn't seem to affect festival goers the slightest, especially the sun burned ones. A few songs into their set the band made a light jab at R Kelly, "We just want to take the opportunity to say it's really great to be opening for R Kelly. We toured Europe together in 1996, so it's good to catch up again." Later after the set was over, I bumped into a slightly inebriated older fan of the band that had been disappointed with the set. "You're supposed to rock out at a festival, not mellow out!" Fact of the matter is, Yo La Tengo tailored the set for their longtime fans, and they didn't seem to care about much else. That's pretty cool in my book. -MM

More pictures from day 3 are below, and more are coming soon...

Continue reading "Pitchfork day 3 review & pics (part 1): Yo La Tengo, Tree, Waxahatchee, Run the Jewels, & more"

photos by James Richards IV & Cory Dewald

Low / Belle & Sebastian
Pitchfork Festival - Day 2 - 7/20/2013

We just posted pictures and a review of day 2 (7/20) of Pitchfork Music Festival 2013. Here's more pictures of that day, including shots of Belle & Sebastian, Low, Rustie, Solange, and Andy Stott.

More below...

Continue reading "Pitchfork Festival day 2 pics (part 2): Belle & Sebastian, Low, Solange, Rustie and Andy Stott"

photos by James Richards IV & Cory Dewald
words by Zach Pollack & Milos Markicevic

Phosphorescent / The Breeders / fans
Pitchfork Festival - Day 2 - 7/20/2013
Pitchfork Festival Day 2 - 7/20/2013
Pitchfork Festival - Day 2 - 7/20/2013

On Saturday afternoon (7/20), it was back to Union Park for day two of the 2013 Pitchfork Music Festival. As we discussed in our festival previews, yesterday was absolutely stacked as far as heavier offerings go. In sharp programming though, Julia Holter, Phosphorescent, Low, and Belle and Sebastian were all great inclusions on the lineup. Check out our pictures and reviews from day 1 of the festival, and continue reading on for a recap of day two.

The rain that cut Bjork's show short last night had a positive effect today in that it brought on much cooler temperatures for festival goers. Canadian punk favorites White Lung kicked things off on the Green Stage at 1:00PM and played a ferocious set that sparked a mini-mosh pit. Frontwoman Mish Way sneered and yowled into her mic while festival volunteers scrambled to keep the crowd cool by spraying water bottles on them. (A great thing if you're anticipating it, but quite strange if you hadn't been paying attention.) Near the end of their set, Way introduced a new song called "Blow it South," the band's ode to Florida. Before finishing things off the sassy punk rocker made an apology to the on-deck band in the form of "sorry who has to play next, I think I ruined the mic with lipstick." She didn't sound that sorry though. -MM

Unfortunately, Winnipeg's pummeling KEN mode were scheduled to play directly against White Lung on the Blue Stage. Luckily (and unsurprisingly), there wasn't a damn unfortunate aspect to their set. A small early crowd gathered to hear intense frontman Jesse Matthewson yell "NO- I'M IN CONTROL" at them. The three-piece, who sound much larger than that, exhibit such precision during their live shows. The really awesome thing is that unlike many precise outfits, KEN find a way to achieve that without coming off as robotic. -ZP

Sub Pop act Pissed Jeans played the very first set on the Red Stage a few minutes after White Lung wrapped up their performance. The band's guitarist spoke to the crowd first and joked that they would need at least another half an hour to get ready, but started their set three minutes later. Frontman Matt Korvette was probably the biggest character to set foot on any stage at today's festival. Bursting with energy, he grabbed the mic and laughingly said "Sorry if I'm a little excited but I just found out how much we're getting paid for this." After that he yelled "Get that Bjork money! / That Belle and Sebastian money!" and jockingly mentioned a few other big name musicians in a similar fashion. The band were intense, especially Korvette, who made his way across the stage like a rabid animal, knocking over his mic stand, and later shredding two t-shirts. Korvette screamed into his mic with such force that it appeared his vocal chords would snap at any moment. Near the end of their set, the band told the crowd that they had reached their career peak with today's performance and that it would be best to retire "and pursue other hobbies." At one point, I believe Korvette may have been channeling "Stone Cold" Steve Austin, and ripped the stage clock off of the support structure. "Do you know what time it is?" he screamed, "It's 1PM, in case you didnt know." Though the sludge induced punk carnage may have left some people's ears ringing, the band's sense of humor and carefree attitude won even non-fans over. -MM

By the time Pissed Jeans were busy scrambling folks' brains over at the Red Stage, Los Angeles' Julia Holter was getting started at the Blue. Her output is enchanting and understated, but also hushed, which was maybe not the best choice to run against Korvette and co. Regardless, Holter seemed to make the best of the situation and played beautifully. She performed a bunch of songs from her forthcoming Loud City Song, as well as material from Ekstasis and Tragedy. After a bit of time in the shade spent with Ms. Holter, I headed back into the sun for Phosphorescent over at the Green Stage. -ZP

Phosphorescent really took me by surprise with the release of this year's Muchacho. I'd liked them prior to the album, but I've mostly just been thrilled that they were able to craft a new LP where every single song is great. Matthew Houck and co. were in top form yesterday afternoon too, providing a bit of solace from the heaviness of the day. Even though Houck sings of pain and anguish at times, the set was extremely feel-good and he seemed to be enjoying himself on stage as well. The biggest set highlight for me was the expertly-penned "Song for Zula." It's interesting in that it's more of an '80s take on what Phosphorescent have become so great at, but yeah, what a tune. -ZP

After Phosphorescent, I stuck around that side of the park waiting for ...And You Will Know Us By The Trail of Dead to take the Red Stage at 3:20PM. Trail of Dead just don't fuck around, and their Pitchfork Fest performance didn't stray from that notion. It's no-frills rock in the same way that Queens of the Stone Age are incredibly badass, and the large crowd they drew really ate it up. ToD was a nice precursor to the block of Savages / Metz / Swans that would soon follow. -ZP

Tampa Bay natives Merchandise returned to Chicago to play at the festival's shaded Blue Stage around 3:45PM. The band have an additional member this time around, Elsner Nino, who has permanently replaced the band's old drum machine. The addition of a live drummer did wonders for the band's overall sound, adding a louder, more organic style to their already tight post-punk songs. The outfit played a few songs from their most recent Totale Night EP but the highlight of the show for this writer was "In a Nightmare Room" from Children of Desire, a song that made Merchandise a personal favorite of mine last year. -MM

Female post punkers Savages were probably the most hyped band announced to be playing at Pitchfork Fest this year, and they absolutely did not disappoint. Not only did the band deliver, they even got nods of approval from Swans' Michael Gira, who mentioned them during his set later in the day. The ladies performed a tighter-than-tight set -- each member's contributions stood out but they performed in such unison with no overshadowing. Frontwoman Jehnny Beth looked slightly possessed while she swayed her hands in rhythmic motions, cocking her head back and forth in synch with the drums. -MM

I left Savages a bit early in order to get a great spot for Swans at the nearby Red Stage. (I also went to see Savages at Sound Opinions Live on Thursday.) "What's your favorite band?" has always been a very tough question for me, but over the past year I've just realized I love and want to listen to Swans more than anyone else. I am not a psychopath... I promise. Michael Gira are co. began their set with "new" song // recent live staple "To Be Kind." At times, it's often hard to be able to tell exactly what tune Swans are performing, and there's also a plethora of unreleased material they play on the regular. "Oxygen" is one of those, which came a bit later in the set. Gira bellows, "I steal all the oxygen" as he spins a tale of his own death and ascent to heaven. Basically, it rules. "Oxygen" is also fairly funky/psychedelic, a somewhat new territory for the outfit. I'd be quite satisfied if that's the direction things are heading on their planned next album. They also ripped out the 32-minute "The Seer" from 2012's excellent LP of the same name. Swans performed four-songs yesterday, including "Toussaint Louverture Song," whereas many other festival acts were able to hammer out roughly ten. -ZP

Fresh from announcing her departure from The Pixies, Kim Deal played Pitchfork Fest with her reunited Breeders as the original 1993 lineup. Celebrating the 20th anniversary of the band's sophomore album Last Splash, they performed the album in its entirety to a crowd of excited and nostalgic fans. There were some minor technical difficulties at the start of the show with Deal's vocals being barely audible over the speakers, but the problem was quickly nipped. Deal was in good spirits as well, constantly talking up the crowd with some behind the scenes stories that included sampling a mini Moog. Now if Deal would just join up with The Pixies at Riot Fest... but I'm not holding my breath. -MM

Next up after The Breeders were Low, over at the Blue (best) Stage. In our festival preview, I spoke about the Duluth trio as maybe not being the most obvious choice for a festival act but that it would work out nicely. Well, I'd even go so far as to say their set yesterday was fantastic. The setlist was perfect -- quite a few numbers from this year's excellent The Invisible Way, "Monkey" and "Pissing" from The Great Destroyer, and "Stay" off of Long Division -- and it felt like one of those performances that stitches together all in attendance with an emotional bond. It was one of the best sets I've seen so far this weekend. -ZP

Soft spoken indie rockers Belle and Sebastian were a reprieve of sorts to festival goers who had spent the day seeing abrasive rock bands and the eardrum-shattering Swans set earlier in the afternoon (I forgot to bring earplugs...). A slight drizzle started around the band's fourth or fifth song but did not cut the show short like yesterday. Frontman Stuart Murdoch charmed audience members with his kind words, stating Chicago is much more relaxing than New York. Murdoch also engaged with audience members, inviting fans on stage, and even letting one fan draw on his face with mascara. Despite performing in a large festival setting during the headlining slot, the band managed to play one of the most intimate shows of the day. -MM

More pictures from day 2 below...

Continue reading "Pitchfork day 2 review & pics (The Breeders, Swans, Savages, White Lung, KEN mode, Pissed Jeans, Julia Holter & more)"

photos by Jeff Ryan

Savages & Sky Ferreira @ Lincoln Hall - 7/19/2013
Savages @ Lincoln Hall - 7/19/2013
Sky Ferreira @ Lincoln Hall - 7/19/2013

Bjork's headlining Pitchfork set was cut short Friday night, but some lucky (or possibly unlucky) fans did get a bit more, and I don't mean at the Bjork-themed party happening at Berlin. Bjork was a surprise DJ at the sold out Savages/Sky Ferreira official P4K aftershow happening at Lincoln Hall that night. She was sort of out of sight though, so no good pictures (here's one), but we do have some great ones of both scheduled performers in this post.

If you were there, what did you think of Bjork's setlist? Danielle Harpy wasn't pleased...

"To say that Bjork's DJ set was off-beat is a huge understatement. It was hateful. torturous. Not music, but the sound of chainsaws on trees, jackhammers on cement and at a volume that was like hitting our heads with a hammer. It did not nothing but make me angry that she was so anti-human."

For Savages it was their second of two nights at the venue and the night before they played Pitchfork (stay tuned for pictures and review from Saturday). Sky played the fest on Sunday (pics coming from that too).

More from Lincoln Hall below...

Continue reading "Savages & Sky Ferreria played Lincoln Hall w/ surprise DJ Bjork (pics, but not of Bjork)"