Entries tagged with: Pitchfork Festival
Pitchfork was just acquired by publishing giant Condé Nast for an undisclosed sum. From the The New York Times:
Pitchfork is incredibly fortunate to have found in Condé Nast a team of people who share our commitment to editorial excellence," Ryan Schreiber, Pitchfork's founder and chief executive, said in a statement. "Their belief in what we do, combined with their additional expertise and resources, will allow us to extend our coverage of the artists and stories that shape the music landscape on every platform."Condé Nast say print mag The Pitchfork Review will continue too.
The site's influence has been growing in recent years, and it has developed a reputation for being able to bolster the careers of artists with a positive review.
In an email to its staff, Condé Nast's chief executive, Bob Sauerberg, said the deal "reinforces our commitment to building Condé Nast's premium digital network, focusing on distinctive editorial voices and engaging high-value millennial audiences."
According to Wikipedia, Conde Nast also owns Vogue, W, Glamour, Allure, Self, GQ, Details, Golf Digest, Bon Appetit, Wired, The New Yorker, Vanity Fair and more.
Meanwhile, the Village Voice just got a new owner too.
photos by James Richards IV
Courtney Barnett / The Julie Ruin / Run the Jewels
Waxahatchee seems all grown up since its 2013 appareance at Pitchfork. Back then, crowd chatter and indifferent fans drowned out a majority of leader Katie Crutchfield's lyrics on the small stage. Here, Crutchfield receives support from a backing quartet that adds muscle, volume and thickness to her musings. In her world, holding back emotions is for sissies. Framed by fuzz-rock and elastic pop arrangments, she navigates gray areas of romantic relationships and insecurities of getting older. Her deceptively sweet voice relays the worries, wishes and misgivings common to almost every 20-and 30-something. For 45 minutes, Waxahatchee functions as a personal diary, complete with smart analogies that spare no one blame, including Crutchfield herself. [Bob Gendron for Chicago Tribune]You've seen day 1, more day 1 and day 2, and here's pictures of the third and final day of the 2015 Pitchfork Music Festival. This time we got Chance the Rapper, Todd Terje & the Olsens, Run the Jewels, PC Music's AG Cook, Caribou, Clark, Jamie xx, How to Dress Well, Courtney Barnett, Perfume Genius, Madlib & Freddie Gibbs, The Julie Ruin, Waxahatchee, Mourn, Viet Cong, SIngle Mothers and Bitchin Bajas. More pictures below...
photos by James Richards IV
Sleater-Kinney/Vic Mensa/Kurt Vile/Shamir @ Pitchfork Fest 7/18/2015
"You're beautiful when you're wet," Kurt Vile tells the crowd, putting a positive spin on a damp situation. The singer/guitarist, who has a highly anticipated new record due in September, starts 35 minutes late due to the rain and evacuation delay. True to form, he stretches out, opening with the ambling "Gold Tones," a 10-minute epic that magnifies his mystical, introspective guitar lines and sun-baked vocals. Vile, who never seems in a hurry no matter the situation, remains content to let the groggy country-rock melody run its course. It's his aw-shucks way of easing people back into the festival setting and brushing off the personal stress of losing substantial set time. -[Chicago Tribune]At the end of Protomartyr's early afternoon set during Day 2 (7/18) of the 2015 Pitchfork Music Festival, singer Joe Casey offered the crowd, watching in 90-degree temperatures and unrelenting humidity, a word of advice: "Hydrate." He probably didn't mean the torrential thunderstorm that cracked open an hour later during Ex Hex's set which was cut short as Chicago's Union Park was temporarily evacuated. Folks were let back in less than an hour later, old hat for Chicago festival crowds.
Saturday's rain made things muddy -- and delayed Vince Staples' flight, canceling his set -- but spirits weren't too dampened, as massive crowds enjoyed sets by Sleater-Kinney, Kurt Vile, Vic Mensa, The New Pornographers, Parquet Courts, A$AP Ferg, Shamir and more. Sophie didn't play, whether it was weather-related was not made clear, but Towkio filled in. (His pal, PC Music's AG Cook, is scheduled to perform today.) Pictures from the day are in this post.
Pitchfork wraps up today (7/19) with sets from Chance the Rapper, Todd Terje & the Olsens, Run the Jewels, The Julie Ruin, Viet Cong, Courtney Barnett, Perfume Genius, and more. You can watch it live from your air conditioned home, too, as it's streaming live. UPDATE: Day 3 happened and pictures are up.
photos by Cory Dewald
Iceage/Mac DeMarco/Natalie Prass/Steve Gunn @ Pitchfork Fest 7/17/2017
DeMarco's goofball demeanor came across endearingly on stage, as he pulled faces and squared off with his bassist on the guitar solo for Steely Dan's "Reelin' in the Years." At one point DeMarco told the crowd "We have a new album coming out" to which the crowd responded enthusiastically, thinking that he was going to play some. DeMarco then told the crowd "Oh no, no. We're not going to play those songs, we don't really know them. I just wanted to say that it's probably been leaked and you guys should download it. I don't really give a shit." Wrapping things up with "Chamber of Reflection" and a final song, DeMarco flashed his gap toothed grin and left us all wondering where he was headed after the set and if we could pull an invite. - [Gapers Block]We already posted one set of pictures from 2015 Pitchfork Music Festival's opening day (7/17) but here's a second set, with shots of Mac DeMarco, Panda Bear, Iceage, Natalie Prass, Jessica Pratt, iLoveMakonnen and more. Check out more, below...
photos by James Richards IV
Wilco / Panda Bear / Jessica Pratt
We have an early front-runner for the weekend's quietest act, and perhaps the festival's quietest act ever. It's all about two barefoot guitarists seated in the shade. Jessica Pratt must imagine she's playing in her living room instead of a small outdoor stage tucked in the southwest corner of Union Park. How else could she play through the noise and distractions that permeate a big outdoor music event such as this? Her melodies whisper, her guitar tones hover, and her voice suggests that it wants to make each of the few hundred listeners pressed close to the stage feel like he or she is the only other person within earshot. It works. It's easy to feel empathy for solo performers facing a big festival crowd, their panic intensifying as they struggle to command a restive audience's attention. But Pratt plays as if none of that is a concern. [Greg Kot for Chicago Tribune]The 2015 Pitchfork Festival kicked off yesterday (7/17) with sets from Wilco, Panda Bear, Mac DeMarco, Iceage, Ought, Steve Gunn, iLoveMakonnen, Jessica Pratt, Ryley Walker and more. That's a review of Jessica Pratt's set above. Wilco, fresh off surprise-releasing their new album Star Wars, opened by playing the album in full front to back. Then they continued with older favorites: "Camera," "Via Chicago," "Heavy Metal Drummer," and more. Pictures of day 1 and Wilco's full setlist are in this post.
The fest continues today (7/18) with Sleater-Kinney, Future Islands, The New Pornographers, Kurt Vile, Ex Hex and more. If you're not there, are you streaming it live?
The 2015 Pitchfork Music Festival in underway in Chicago's Union Park where it'll be all weekend (July 17-19). Stay tuned for pictures and coverage of the fest but in the meantime you can watch it live, as Pitchfork is streaming it via two separate feeds. Saturday's performers include Sleater-Kinney, Vic Mensa, Future Islands, The New Pornographers, A$AP Ferg, SOPHIE, Parquet Courts, Kurt Vile, Protomartyr, and more.
photo: Pitchfork Fest 2014 (more by James Richards IV)
The Pitchfork Music Festival happens this weekend in Chicago (7/17-7/19), featuring performances from Wilco, Sleater-Kinney, Chance the Rapper, Future Islands, The New Pornographers, Run the Jewels, Caribou, Panda Bear, Todd Terje & the Olsens, Mac Demarco, Kurt Vile and loads more. BrooklynVegan will be there, so stay tuned for coverage and photos. If you can't make it, Pitchfork will also be streaming it live.
As usual, the fun continues later each night with a plethora of aftershows, both official and unofficial. There's something for every type of fan, with shows from Parquet Courts, Viet Cong, ILoveMakonnen, Jessica Pratt, Ariel Pink, Ex Hex How to Dress Well, Protomartyr and more. A guide to the night time action, below...
Chicago residents Jessee Rose Crane and Philip Jerome Lesicko have been making noisy pop as The Funs since 2009, balancing melody, emotion and dissonance adeptly. You can make comparisons to other bands but they've definitely figured out their own thing. Their latest album, My Survival, will be out in September via Manic Static and we've got the premiere of "Don't Let Go" in this post. Here's what Jessee Rose Crane says about the song:
Focusing on genuine relationships not losing sight of the present and who you really are. In an age of consumerism cutting fake people out your life to focus on building something positive and tangible for yourself. Choosing to spend time with People who really have your back. Going against the grain and swimming up stream to really find yourself.Stream "Don't Let Go" below.
""Don't Let Go" is about not losing yourself to the constant distraction of social media and thoughtless consumption. I really love mindful conversations face to face without a smart phone there degrading that experience. Good open conversations are one the most inspiring things to me. They turn my brain on. That connection can't be forced or planned or fake. It's about waiting and wanting to have a vulnerable relationship with someone that really understands you."
If you're in Chicago for Pitchfork Fest this weekend, The Funs are playing an afterparty on Friday (7/17) at Thalia Hall with Parquet Courts and Piss Piss Piss Moan Moan Moan.
photos by P Squared Photography
Chicago's Twin Peaks were in town at the end of last week on their tour with The Lemons, hitting Mercury Lounge (8/13) and Baby's All Right (8/14). We caught the Baby's show which was one of the wildest shows there probably since Mac DeMarco. They literally tore the roof off the place, with Baby's acoustic tiling being a casualty of rock n' roll. A video of the roof being ripped off and pictures of the hot, sweaty mayhem, including ones of their tourmates The Lemons and opening band Winstons (not Public Access TV who dropped off the show to play with Weezer instead), are in this post.
Twin Peaks played Pitchfork Fest in mid-July. A video of bassist Jack Dolan buying records with $20 a Chicago paper gave him at the fest, can also be watched below. A full, recent KEXP performance and more pics from Baby's down there too.
Grimes / Kendrick Lamar / Slowdive
The 2014 Pitchfork Music Festival wrapped up yesterday (7/20) after two previous days of fun in Chicago's Union Park. It was an especially diverse day with plenty of hip hop (Kendrick Lamar, Schoolboy Q, Earl Sweatshirt, Isaiah Rashad), flourishes of heavy offerings (Deafheaven, Perfect Pussy), a highly anticipated reunion from Slowdive, plenty of indie rock/pop (Grimes, Majical Cloudz, DIIV, Real Estate, Dum Dum Girls, Speedy Ortiz) and even more. Here's how the Sunday of Pitchfork Fest went down...
By the time I arrived on Sunday, Speedy Ortiz were well into their set on the Blue stage and playing the fan favorite "Taylor Swift." Speedy's recorded material has always oozed personality and attitude, and their live show does as well. Frontwoman Sadie Dupuis comfortably ad libbed lyrics with various shouts and word extensions throughout their set. The band polished off their live-wire performance with a couple of tunes from their Real Hair EP and their new song "Bigger Party." -ZP
Over on the Green stage, Bandcamp sweethearts Mutual Benefit simultaneously opened up the fest's final day with a few of their sweet, melodic tunes. With an entire live band backing frontman Jordan Lee's soft-spoken, almost falsetto vocal range and feather light lyrics. The crowd was surprisingly full for the early afternoon set, and many closer to the band seemed to know every word off of its debut studio album Love's Crushing Diamond. Highlights included a heartfelt rendition of "Golden Wake" and a take on "Advanced Falconry" perfect for warming people up for the rest of the day. -AG
DIIV kicked off the first show on the Red stage yesterday and played for a fairly large early afternoon crowd, beginning their set with a new song called Follow . The band jangly guitar indie pop made for some excellent summer jams. Keeping with that theme, they played a few tracks that showed hints of surf rock, and the lead singer Zachary Cole Smith wore a colorful flamenco looking shirt that Prince might be proud of. -MM
Syracuse rockers Perfect Pussy drew a huge crowd on Sunday, surprising even lead singer Meredith Graves. Their set was short but powerful, not unusual for a band whose last record, 2014's Say Yes To Love, clocks in at around twenty one minutes. After a lengthy sound check, a rarity for the band, they didn't waste time getting into their set. While they sounded excellent, the real highlight of the show was, as always, Graves' fantastic performance as a vocalist and frontwoman. Her theatrical dancing stood in delicious contrast to the pure energy of each song. The crowd barely got a chance to calm down from one pit before another song crashed down, opening up an even bigger floor. Although the band seemed a bit flustered by the crowd and the midday heat, they never let up, quickly running through hits off of their debut album and demo, touching on fan favorites such as "Interference Fits," "Advance Upon The Real," "I," and "II." -AG
Next up were Deafheaven on the Green stage. The California crew began their set with the glimmering Sunbather opener "Dream House," and proceeded to match the weather with equal parts soaring shoegaze and metal assault. Lead guitarist Kerry McCoy expertly segued the band into "Irresistible," and then to "Sunbather." That block was followed by their spacey new tune "From The Kettle Unto The Coil," which contains a traditional metal breakdown in the middle. George Clark's guttural shrieks glided effortlessly over the riffage, and he's quite the frontman too, thrashing about the stage. Deafheaven closed their incredibly moving performance with "Unrequited" off of 2011's Roads to Judah. Not all "metal" acts are appropriate for a daytime slot, but Deafheaven were damn near a perfect fit. -ZP
After Deafheaven, I headed over to the blue stage to catch a bit of Isaiah Rashad's set. As one of three TDE rappers of the day (along with Kendrick Lamar and Schoolboy Q), Rashad stood out with his southern flow, relaxed vibe, and raspy delivery. He drew a huge crowd, who danced and sang along to "Heavenly Father" and "Menthol" off of this year's Cilvia Demo. You can hear a bit of guys like Kendrick Lamar and Chance the Rapper in Rashad's delivery, and with the amount that the crowd was feeling it, it'll only be a matter of time before he rises up to their level. -ZP
Continuing the hip hop block, next up was Earl Sweatshirt on the red stage. His DJ played a few songs before Earl came out -- Chief Keef's "3Hunna," Tyler the Creator's "Sandwitches," etc. -- and when he finally took the stage, Earl had the crowd sing along to about half of "Don't Stop Believin'" as it played over the PA. When he actually got started, the first song Earl played was "20 Wave," accompanied by Odd Future associate Domo Genesis. Downtempo tunes from Doris hit much harder than I expected them to, and the crowd was hyped on it. He took things to another level by playing the very heavy "Kill" from his debut album Earl. Earl's been touring quite a bit lately and that definitely showed in his live performance -- he's become a showman and has so much control over the audience. Before playing "Molasses," he had the crowd repeat its hook back -- "Ima fuck the freckles off your face, bitch." -ZP
Dum Dum Girls had some minor technical difficulties before starting their set, but once things got going they sounded great. As usual, they were in matching outfits, and played a mix of the old and new. My personal favorite from the set was "Rimbaud Eyes", an excellent single from their recent Too True LP. -MM
One of the most anticipated sets of the day by many was Schoolboy Q's late afternoon performance on the Green stage. The party rapper got things started with his hit "Hands on the Wheel," and then jumped to 2014's Oxymoron for "What They Want" and "Gangsta." He reached back to his debut studio album Setbacks for "Druggys wit Hoes," and the crowd went nuts. Q's a fine addition to any festival, offering hyped-up vibes and heavy beats. -ZP
Craving some shade, I went to check out Jon Hopkins over at the Blue stage. His seemingly dance-focused set was based upon a series of glitchy Immunity tracks, including bits of "We Disappear," "Open Eye Signal," "Breathe This Air," and others. The Blue stage was simultaneously the place for those who wanted to dance and others who'd rather take a seat and nod their heads along. -ZP
I was fortunate to see Majical Cloudz perform as an opener for The Soft Moon a few years ago and it was great seeing how much more confident the duo had become since then. Frontman Devon Welsh sported his never changing plain white tee and black pants and started a few songs with countdowns that the crowd enthusiastically chanted along with. I was hoping Welsh would later join Grimes on stage during her set to play their collaborative "Nightmusic" from Grimes' Visions album, or maybe their recently unearthed demo about an obese cat. Grimes played the former, but Welsh was nowhere in sight. -MM
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. -AG
After that on the Blue stage it was DJ Spinn, who was initially going to perform with his collaborator DJ Rashad before Rashad's untimely passing, but decided to stay on the festival and perform his own set which Chicago Tribute called "a thrilling display of the "ghetto house" sound that has thrived in the city's South Side neighborhoods for the better part of two decades."
Canadian pop sensation Grimes was the penultimate performer of Pitchfork 2014, an honor she did not take lightly. In addition to running through classics, Grimes treated the crowd to two relatively new songs and one for which she was still working out the lyrics. She had seemingly boundless energy, dancing feverishly throughout her entire set. She seemed to be having the time of her life, playing with multiple synthesizers and vocal reverb to create the image of DJ set. This was clearly a different Grimes than we have seen in the past - she was confident, loud, and ready to party with the audience. Fans went crazy for Grimes classics such as "Circumambient" and "Oblivion," and stayed dancing even for her lesser-known songs, such as "Be a Body." However, the highlight of the set was undoubtedly the last few songs. After premiering a new song on which she had just completed production to a rousing response from the audience, Grimes treated the crowd to "Phone Sex," a Blood Diamonds song on which she is featured. She then broke out her dance floor-ready hit, "Go," to the delight of the audience. It was clear when the drop hit in "Go" that this was a new, supersized Grimes, ready to take the world's dance clubs by storm and become the next EDM sweetheart. Always the performer, she closed out her set with her biggest hit to date, 2012's "Genesis." -AG
Sunday headliner and festival bookend Kendrick Lamar put on a helluva show with his excellent four-piece band behind him. Lamar began to hold court with the good vibes "Money Trees" and very live "Backseat Freestyle" off of good kid, m.A.A.d city. The pro band managed to handle every little nuance contained in Kendrick's beats, and there are plenty of 'em. Unlike most of his peers, Lamar isn't much for cutting songs halfway through. Almost all tunes, with the exception of "The Art of Peer Pressure," were performed in their entirety. Virtually undisputed party song "Swimming Pools (Drank)" came next, followed by the boom bap of "m.A.A.d city." The last tune I heard before splitting was the chilled out "Sing About Me, I'm Dying Of Thirst." Kendrick provided the perfect ending to the day and the entire festival. -ZP
photos by Dominick Mastrangelo; words by Zach Pollack and Milos Markicevic
Neutral Milk Hotel / St. Vincent / Danny Brown @ P4K Fest 7/19/2014
Day 2 of the 2014 Pitchfork Music Festival featured a headlining set by Neutral Milk Hotel, plus sets from St. Vincent, Wild Beasts, Danny Brown, FKA Twigs, tUnE-yArDs and more. Pictures and field report from Saturday's goings-on are in this post. Here we go...
Day 2 began with an early afternoon set from locals Twin Peaks. Although guitarist/main vocalist Cadien Lake James was confined to a wheelchair due to a recent leg injury, the band still managed to put on the kind of appropriately rowdy performance that they've become known for. James and co. got things started with the Sunken standout "Stand in the Sand," and they also played their great, newish single "Flavor" off of their forthcoming LP Wild Onion. James traded lead vocals with fellow guitarist Clay Frankel and bassist Jack Dolan throughout the set. Before playing their final tune, James seemed to be feeling reflective -- he offered, "This is definitely our high point so far in our... whatever the fuck this is." -ZP
After Twin Peaks, I moved over to the nearby red stage to catch the Chicago debut of Brooklyn-based rapper Ka. Ka was able to hold a sizable crowd with his down-tempo beats and methodical delivery. His slow-moving tunes contain rich lyrical content and are undeniably impactful. Before playing the somber cut "Summer," he spoke about how the season in his Brownsville neighborhood isn't full of bikinis and BBQs, but rather an increased level of violence -- he also acknowledged that we've got a very similar summer landscape here in Chicago. Memorable numbers from his performance include "Our Father" and "Jungle." -ZP
Saturday's P4K-goers were treated not to one, but two Elephant Six Collective bands, both of whom have been touring together. Circulatory System was the first of the two, (the other being the day's headliner Neutral Milk Hotel) playing a solid set of '60s-influenced indie rock under the cool shade of the Blue Stage. Each of the band's members played multiple instruments, casually adding everything from a clarinet to a xylophone, with frontman Will Cullen Hart even contributing some additional drumming. One highlight was an excellent instrumental interlude, a duet between the band's violinist and cellist. The band played some new songs off their most recent release, Mosaics within Mosaics, which was released earlier last month. Fans of Yo La Tengo had a lot to enjoy here. - MM
Back over at the Red Stage, Merrill Garbus and the rest of tUnE-yArDs were a few songs into their set and playing "Hey Life" off of their 2014 LP Nikki Nack. In addition to bassist Nate Brenner, two backup vocalists and a percussionist rounded out the band. This allowed for expanded versions of Whokill favorites "Gangsta" and "Bizness." The additional members took a breather during "Powa," providing the room for Garbus and Brenner to experiment a bit. Though the project is now more pop-forward, tUnE-yArDs' funky and jammy backbone was still able to peek through. -ZP
Danny Brown intended to throw a party during his Pitchfork Fest set. The Detroit rapper sprinted back and forth across the stage while performing fan favorites like "Break It (Go)," "Smokin' and Drinkin'," "I Will," "Bruiser Brigade," and "Kush Coma." It was without a doubt the funnest set of the day, and Brown appeared to be having just as much fun as the massive crowd watching him perform. -ZP
Swedish techno minimalist The Field played a largely ambient set to a crowd that was eager to get out of the sun and recharge before the day's headliners played. The set started slow but progressively built up to include a live drummer. Generously borrowing stylistic cues from early Warp Record signees like Aphex Twin, The Field kept things simple and steady, opting for a more IDM approach. The set might have been better suited for a venue with less light, but listeners, myself included, were entranced throughout. - MM
St. Vincent (aka Annie Clark) brought her now-choreographed performance to Pitchfork Festival for an evening set on the red stage. The choreography only enhances and doesn't hinder her guitar heroics and pitch perfect vocals. Clark and her band began their set by playing "Rattlesnake" into "Digital Witness" into "Cruel." For "Cheerleader," she mounted her podium-like setup and the song was played slower than usual, reminding me of "We Are The Champions." During "Birth in Reverse" the band left room for a freak-out section, and Clark ended up kneeling on the stage to headbutt her drummer's bass drum. Clark has consistently reinvented what St. Vincent is from album to album, and has now honed the live chops to be able to play to whichever attribute she'd like. -ZP
Headliners for the night were storied indie rock band Neutral Milk Hotel whose two '90s album have become massively influential since main man Jeff Mangum dropped out the music world shortly after making 1998's In the Aeroplane Over the Sea. That has turned the band into a huge draw for their current reunion tour and his songs still hold power. The fests big projection TV screens were turned off for the performance that showcased favorites from the band's two albums. (Setlist is below.) NYC can expect the same when Neutral Milk Hotel play Celebrate Brooklyn! in Prospect Park on Tuesday (7/22) and Wednesday (7/23). Tickets are still available for Tuesday's show.
Pictures from Day 1 of Pitchfork Fest are HERE and HERE and a second set from Day 2 (including FKA Twigs) are HERE and Day 3 are HERE. More of Day 2, including sets from Pusha T, Empress Of, and Wild Beasts, below...
Beck / Sun Kil Moon / disgruntled Death Grips fan
The 2014 Pitchfork Music Festival began on Friday afternoon (7/18) in Chicago's Union Park with a variety of acts packed into the compressed schedule. Friday headliner Beck was led up to by sets from Giorgio Moroder, Avey Tare's Slasher Flicks, Sun Kil Moon, Sharon Van Etten, Factory Floor, and others...
LA via Florida experimentalists Hundred Waters kicked off the festival with a 3:30PM set on the Red stage. The quartet's delicate arrangements translated surprisingly well to the festival setting -- standout tunes "Cavity," "Out Alee," and "Down From the Rafters" were awarded additional layers of gauze-y production and live percussion. The crowd grew steadily throughout their set, and were extremely attentive on quiet numbers like the a cappella The Moon Rang Like a Bell opener "Show Me Love." -ZP
Post industrialists Factory Floor performed on the Blue stage and effectively disrupted everyone's nap in the shade with their looped heart-thumping beats and nightmarish soundscapes. The band's show was as much an experimental art performance as it was a musical one, combining everything from arpeggiated synths to random strikes on a wooden block. In addition, the band's singer created some brooding soundscapes by clanging what looked like a drum stick against her guitar's strings, occasionally making a few heavily processed vocals in a nearby mic. Overall the band performed a challenging set that rewarded anyone tough enough to stay for the whole thing. If Swans and Kraftwerk had a baby it would most likely sound like Factory Floor. -MM
Neneh Cherry's appearance at Pitchfork Fest was only her second-ever in North America despite a twenty-some-odd year career. Frequent collaborators RocketNumberNine backed the singer, and the trio delivered a fun performance. Blank Project cuts "Spit Three Times" and "Everything" saw Cherry's energy at its highest point, while Ben and Tom Page churned out their great industrial clamor. And yes, she finished her set with the classic "Buffalo Stance." -ZP
British musician and producer Bobby Krlic, otherwise known as atmospheric drone artist The Haxan Cloak, brought a live drummer to add intensity to his dark afternoon set. Familiar songs from his 2013 record Excavation morphed into grooves that were nearly danceable. (If you're wondering why this is so surprising, listen to his dropless song, "The Drop.") While fans enjoyed the tension and release of the forty-five minute set, one couldn't help but imagine it might be more appropriately suited for a small, dark room, rather than a bright, mid-afternoon festival stage. -AG
Sharon Van Etten
As I continue to see Sharon Van Etten live, her performances only get better and better. This time around, she was joined by new-ish live members Brad Cook (Megafaun) on bass and Darren Jessee (Ben Folds Five) on drums, in addition to usual suspects Doug Keith and Heather Woods Broderick. Sharon and her four-piece band were heavy on this year's great Are We There, but older tunes like "Save Yourself," "Don't Do It," and "Serpents" were also played. SVE provided a welcome, laid-back, early evening set, and it served as a great precursor for Sun Kil Moon. -ZP
Legendary Italian producer and composer Giorgio Moroder closed off the Red stage last night with an eclectic and seamless DJ set that drew from his long list of hit collaborations. Morodor, now 74, no doubt looked a little out of place on stage alongside the psychedelic visuals, perplexing some of the younger fest goers, but he was as lively as DJs a quarter his age, enthusiastically pointing his fingers in time with the mix, and starting a few waves and clap-alongs with the crowd, appearing to have as good of a time as his audience. The mix, a career retrospective of sorts, followed a chronological timeline, playing his disco hits including Donna Summers' "I Feel Love" (which Beck later covered in his set on the Green stage), before transitioning to the '80s anthem "Take My Breath Away" which was accompanied by visual snippets from Top Gun, featuring the
vampire ageless Tom Cruise. Not content with just playing old hits, Morodor also threw in some of his more recent work into the mix, including last year's collaboration with Daft Punk, as well as his excellent new track "Giorgio's Theme". For a guy in his 70s, Moroder showed he still has the chops to get crowds moving, cueing enough buildups and drops to satisfy any Monster guzzling EDM fan in attendance. -MM
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." Peep his full setlist below. -AG
Pitchfork Festival continues today (7/19) with sets from Neutral Milk Hotel, St. Vincent, Danny Brown, tUnE-yArDs, Cloud Nothings and more. If you're not there, you can stream it online.
Pitchfork Festival 2013 (more by James Richards IV)
Pitchfork Festival is about to kick off in Chicago's Union Park today (7/18) and run through Sunday (7/20). If you're there, you might want to check the updated set times (sans Death Grips, The Julie Ruin and the late DJ Rashad (his collaborator DJ Spinn plays in his slot), but still with Earl Sweatshirt), and if you're not there, you can still enjoy some of the festivities from home.
Select sets will stream at Pitchfork.com (via LiveOne's CrowdSurfing platform) beginning at 4:35 PM CST today. Today's streaming sets include Giorgio Moroder, Sharon Van Etten, Hundred Waters and Neneh Cherry.
On Saturday and Sunday, streams begin at 1 PM, with Cloud Nothings, Ka, Danny Brown, Wild Beasts and Twin Peaks on Sat; and Real Estate, Schoolboy Q, Deafheaven and Mutual Benefit on Sun.
Full streaming schedule below...
DJ Rashad @ Pitchfork Fest 2013 (more by Cory Dewald)
After hours of rumors circulating on Twitter, the Chicago Tribune confirms what we didn't want to hear...
Chicago footwork and juke pioneer, DJ Rashad Harden, 35, died Saturday afternoon, according to police.Rest in peace Rashad!
Chicago police are conducting an investigation after a friend found Harden's body in an apartment on the 2100 block of West 21st Street, said Hector Alfaro, a news affairs officer at the Chicago Police Department.
Detroit's DJ Godfather initially tweeted the news. Godfather was scheduled to perform with DJ Rashad tonight.
Police said that Harden died of a suspected drug overdose. Narcotics and drug paraphernalia were allegedly found near his body, they said. The Cook County medical examiner's office said he was pronounced dead at the scene at 1:50 p.m. An autopsy is slated for Sunday, according to the office.
The initial Pitchfork Festival lineup was announced last month, and now many new artists have been added, including St. Vincent, Danny Brown, Avey Tare's Slasher Flicks, Real Estate, Schoolboy Q, Earl Sweatshirt, Cloud Nothings, Hudson Mohawke, Deafheaven, Perfect Pussy, Dum Dum Girls, Jon Hopkins, Majical Cloudz, Mutual Benefit, Speedy Ortiz, Kelela, the Field, SZA, DJ Rashad and DJ Spinn, Hundred Waters, FKA Twigs, Isaiah Rashad, Empress Of and Twin Peaks.
They join previously announced artists Neutral Milk Hotel, Kendrick Lamar, Sun Kil Moon, Slowdive, Grimes, Giorgio Moroder and more. Tickets are still available.
Updated day-by-day lineup below...
Pitchfork Music Festival returns to Chicago's Union Park from July 18-20 and the lineup was just announced. It includes Neutral Milk Hotel, Kendrick Lamar, Beck, Slowdive (their first reunion show in the US so far), Giorgio Morder, Sun Kil Moon, Factory Floor, Death Grips, the Haxan Cloak, Sharon Van Etten, tUnE-yArDs, The Julie Ruin, Grimes, Wild Beasts, DIIV, Ka, Circulatory System, Pusha T, The Range, Mas Ysa and more TBA. Tickets are on sale now.
In related news, Pitchfork is teaming up with ATP and Primavera Sound for London's Jabberwocky Festival which includes Neutral Milk Hotel, Electric Wizard, Deafheaven, Kode9, Earth, Pissed Jeans, Connan Mockasin, The Ex, Speedy Ortiz, Iceage, Vatican Shadow, Joanna Gruesome, Metz, Jesu, Chelsea Wolfe, Hookworms and more.
Initial day-by-day Pitchfork Fest lineup below...
photos by Amanda Hatfield
Lil B / Foxygen / Yo La Tengo
After entering with a robed choir behind him, R. Kelly starts stringing together his hits, medley style. A verse, a chorus, and then on to the next. Songs about "getting freaky in the club," the kitchen, the car, wherever. Kelly was the subject of a years-long investigation over child-pornography charges, but was eventually acquitted in 2008. None of that appears to matter to anyone left in the park tonight, as one of the largest crowds in Pitchfork history flocks to check out the dominant R&B performer of the last two decades. The Union Park crowd reaction isn't quite as over-the-top as that of his typical audience, but the dancing continues to escalate until the set peaks with "When a Woman's Fed Up" and the stepping songs "Happy People" and "Step in the Name of Love," accompanied by white balloons. Kelly saves "I Believe I Can Fly" for the encore, and this time white-dove balloons fill the sky. [Chicago Tribune]Pitchfork Music Festival 2013 wrapped up on Sunday (7/21) with its most hip hop heavy day, including sets from rappers El-P, Killer Mike, Lil B, and Tree, plus rap producers TNGHT and Evian Christ (who both happen to be Kanye collaborators). And not exactly rap, but in that real there were also sets from MIA and obscure up-and-comer R. Kelly. It wasn't all hip hop though. Sunday also gave us sets from Foxygen (whose singer, Sam France, continued his streak of climbing at festivals), Yo La Tengo, Waxahatchee, Autre Ne Veut, Glass Candy, and more. Pictures of the final day of the festival are in this post.
If you haven't been keeping up with our coverage of Pitchfork festival, day 1 pictures and review are HERE, and more pictures are HERE and HERE. Day 2 pictures and review are HERE and more pictures are HERE. Day 3 pictures continue below...
photos by Amanda Hatfield
Swans / Solange / fans
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. [BV Chicago]Pitchfork Music Festival 2013 continued on Saturday (7/20) with its second of three days. Day two featured a good deal of bands on the heavy/intense side including Swans, Savages, Metz, Pissed Jeans, and White Lung; some indie legends like Belle & Sebastian, Low, and The Breeders; and some representation from the electronic/R&B world too, including Solange, Rustie, Andy Stott, and Ryan Hemsworth. Of course there were even more artists rounding out the lineup, and pictures from the second day are in this post. Even more are on BV Chicago.
photos by Amanda Hatfield
Bjork / Joanna Newsom / Wire / Mikal Cronin @ Pitchfork Fest 7/19/2013
Wearing a shiny silver dress (while choir wore mostly blue) Bjork sang and moved across the stage with a great deal of passion and energy. Behind her, three screens displayed imagery that included an exploding star, the moon, ZX Spectrum-looking polygons, and even a sped up clip of a seal carcass being consumed by starfish and sea slugs underwater (read: slightly unsettling). The latter stood out, for obvious reasons, and close-ups of the starfish seemed to show a synchronized pulse with the music. Another highlight was the giant tesla coil enclosure that descended from the stage rathers during "Thunderbolt," creating huge sparks each time the synthesizer was played. After each song Bjork politely said "Thank you!" in her strong Icelandic accent which had everyone smiling and laughing. In the distance, a storm was approaching but appeared to be another special effect being incorporated in an already elaborate performance. Unfortunately, it was real, and reached the festival before Bjork could fully complete her set. - [BV Chicago]The 2013 Pitchfork Music Festival kicked off last night (7/19) in Chicago's Union Park. A more gently paced day than what's in store today (7/20) and Sunday (7/21), Friday featured a headlining set from Bjork (which was cut short due to a storm), plus Wire, Joanna Newsom, Angel Olson,Mikal Cronin, Mac Demarco, Woods, Trash Talk, a newly-blonde Frankie Rose, and Daughn Gibson. Pictures from Friday are in this post.
Pitchfork Fest 2013 returns to Union Park in Chicago this weekend with three days of 100% Pitchfork-approved acts including headliners Bjork, R. Kelly, and Belle & Sebastian (who we just caught in Brooklyn and Austin). Single day tickets for two of the days are still available. Check out the full schedule and head to BV Chicago for a preview of Friday.
Looking for an alternative while in Chicago this There's always ? Rotted Tooth Fest and Sailor Jerry's Cobrafest. Look out for the Third Man Records Rolling Record Store in Wicker Park. Check our Chicago Show Calendar for even more.
Bringing some metal to Pitchfork fest are KEN Mode who just kicked off a BrooklynVegan/Invisible Oranges-presented tour that includes three Chicago shows total, three shows in Texas and a NYC show at Saint Vitus which is on sale now. Tour flyer below...
Pitchfork Festival 2012 (more by Fred Pessaro)
As mentioned, Chicago's Pitchfork Music Festival is returning to Union Park from July 19-21 with sets from Bjork, Joanna Newsom, Belle & Sebastian, R. Kelly, Solange, Rustie, Low, The Breeders, Swans, Savages, Merchandise, Julia Holter, KEN mode, White Lung, TNGHT, Evian Christ, Waxahatchee, El-P, Killer Mike, and more across three stages (Red, Blue, and Green). The set times for the festival have now been announced, and you can check out the full day-by-day schedule below.
3-day passes are sold out, but single day tickets are still available.
Pitchfork Festival 2012 (more by Fred Pessaro // BBG)
The final Pitchfork Festival lineup has now been announced, and in addition to previously announced acts like R. Kelly, Joanna Newsom, and Swans, it now includes M.I.A., Lil B, Solange, Wire, Yo La Tengo, Low, Savages, Toro Y Moi, Phosphorescent, Metz, Autre Ne Veut, Mikal Cronin, Parquet Courts, Merchandise, Woods, Julia Holter, Glass Candy, Andy Stott, Pissed Jeans, Frankie Rose, Ryan Hemsworth, Waxahatchee, Blood Orange, Daughn Gibson, Evian Christ, White Lung, KEN Mode, and DJ Rashad.
Three-day passes and single-day tickets are still available.
In other Chicago music festival news, Lollapalooza early bird passes went on sale today, sold out, and then regular 3-day passes went on sale and sold out. Single day tickets go on sale April 9.
Full Pitchfork Festival lineup and schedule below...