The last day of a three day music festival is never easy. You’re tired (or at least you should be by now), you’ve run out of suitable clothes for the heat and long days and nights, and you are starting to think about life back at home and at work. That doesn’t mean you just throw up your hands and give up- it actually means quite the opposite at Lollapalooza. With a packed Sunday lineup that includes probably the weekends greatest variety of acts, Sunday at Lollapalooza is one you can’t miss or take lightly. It’s a full day of great music that culminates with a closing set from first time Lollapalooza performers The Cure.
The day starts with “the most exciting band on earth right now”. At least according to our musical brethren on the other side of the Atlantic Ocean. NME chose “Best of Friends” by the Palma Violets as their song of the year in 2012 and laid down that weighty quote upon the band. The band released their debut album 180 in February of this year. There’s not a lot of material from this British four-piece garage rock band, but the hype is already building to a frenzy in London. The Palma Violets might be all the rage right now in the UK, but their still trying to make a name for themselves here in the States. You can see the band at 1:00 PM at the Bud Light Stage. The Palma Violets have some work to do in the States- let’s see if the hype matches the music early on in the day.
Continuing the British beat theme, Jake Bugg follows the Palma Violets at the Petrillo Stage at 1:45 PM. You’ll be able to follow the crowd at Palma Violets straight over, because the 19 year old singer songwriter is experiencing the same type of hype over in the UK. He opened for Noel Gallagher’s smallest ever solo performance at Camden’s Dingwalls last August. Why are we excited to give Jake the good old live test? Check out the song “Lightning Bolt”. This isn’t your usual English songwriter tune. Jake lists Johnny Cash as one of his influences and we can’t deny that we hear that. Jake Bugg gets our vote for an early must-see act.
SKATERS formed in 2012 and have been busy in 2013 trying to get people to hear their music and take note. Well we have. The trio (comprised of Michael Ian Cummings, Noah Rubin, and Joshua Hubbard) plays at 2:15 PM at The Grove. The bands debut single “I Wanna Dance (But I Don’t Know How)” is one of those catchy festival tunes that you’ll be playing on repeat when you get home from Lollapalooza. We like the idea of a band in the midst of trying to make it playing an early slot at a major festival. These are the type of shows that become part of the legend, or just another show in a list of missed opportunities. We think this is the start to something fun and much bigger for SKATERS.
At 3:30 PM, make your way over to The Grove to check out MS MR. We told you we’d get you away from the Brit fetish. New York’s MS MR just released their debut album, and they’re gearing up to take this year of music by storm. After just over 12 official months as a band, MS MR still have the excitement to draw a crowd, and the talent to keep you coming back. The band’s breakout single “Hurricane” is a brooding masterpiece, which harkens back to an 80s dark wave sound, but somehow feels so new. The duo is just getting started, so don’t miss your chance to catch them now while you can.
California boys Wavves finally take the stage at 4:45 PM at The Grove. We’ve been big fans of Wavves since the beginning here, and along the coast of California they sell out clubs in quick fashion. Yes, going to a Wavves show can make you feel really old in a crowd if you are above the age of 25, but there’s no denying their sun-soaked surf punk is a party worthy of everyone’s attention. We’re hoping that Nathan Williams and Stephen Pope, the face of Wavves during their rise to fame, bring out their wild side for Lollapalooza. The boys like to party, and festivals are a great place to show that off on stage. Wavves 2012 album Afraid Of Heights was a pleasant surprise in last year’s slew of great albums, so it’s nice to see them get some mid-day love at Lollapalooza in Chicago.
We can’t suggest only Wavves at this time slot, and that’s not such a bad problem to have at a music festival. We are back with the British invasion at 5:00 PM, with alt-J at Lake Shore. One of this year’s biggest buzz bands, alt-J won the Mercury Prize for their debut album An Awesome Wave. The band’s layered blend of sophisticated British indie pop brings catchy tunes that just make you want to dance, but in a mellow, back of the room kind of way. Their single “Tessalate” is a not-so-subtle innuendo jam, worth throwing onto your playlist. alt-J made big waves (pun intended) over at Rabbits Black last fall, playing an unforgettable show at Bottom of the Hill with openers Wildcat! Wildcat! However, their set at Coachella was less than awesome (pun still intended), but that could be a result of the blazing desert sun or poor sound. Hopefully they will find their third leg and balance out at Lollapalooza – but your only way of finding out is checking them out.
Starting heading over to Perry’s at 5:45 PM to see Dog Blood. Now if you have no idea what this is or means, then don’t worry because we think we can explain it to you pretty well- Skrillex and Boys Noize. So now you know, and now you know you have to be there. There’s something visceral about Dog Blood’s live performance. At Coachella, they put on one of the best EDM shows of the festival. Their blend of Dubstep and Electro house is presented very raw, very loud, and very hard. Their debut single “Middle Finger” rocked Coachella, and Lollapalooza is up next. The duo is not going to be a secret for long, so head on over to Dog Blood before everyone else finds out what is going on.
The twilight evening brings you one of the best acts at Lollapalooza, Major Lazer from 7:00 PM to 8:15 PM at Perry’s. What started as a strong collaboration between Diplo and Switch’s (two DJ/producers who can pull a crowd in their own right) has morphed into a sound that is mostly the former’s vision. However, expect the same stage antics and unmatchable caricature Major Lazer is known for, which worth seeing up close, so be sure to give yourself plenty of lead time to land a solid spot at Perry’s tent. Major Lazer’s reggae dancehall dub brand was recorded in Jamaica (y’know, for the authentic sounds), and the story driving each song harkens back to the narrative styles of The Streets in Original Pirate Material. The duo dropped a new album this year, Free the Universe, which features collaborators from almost every genre (from Santigold to Dirty Projectors to Wyclef Jean to Bruno Mars to Peaches).
How do you end one of the best festivals of the year, on this planet. With a first time ever performance from a legendary band- that’s how. The Cure will be closing Lollapalooza 2013, much to the happiness of festival founder Perry Farrell: “The first time I ran into Robert Smith of The Cure was 1997 in New York City,” Farrell recalls, “We were both going into the same club; and it was Halloween. I was dressed as myself and so was he. I am so happy The Cure have finally arrived at Lolla in Chicago!” If it makes Perry happy, then it makes us happy too.