Friday, August 31, 2012

Chicago Air and Water Show

The Chicago Air and Water Show roared through the city a couple weekends ago and for the first time in all of my years living here, I actually saw it! Conflicting events kept me from viewing the show in the past and I am so glad that I finally had some freedom in my schedule to bike over to the lake shore to watch the magic. I have to say, it was pretty incredible. The weather was perfect both days and the skill and talent of the pilots and parachuters had me in awe. I'm already looking forward to next year!

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Lollapalooza: Sunday

It was a perfect day on the Sunday of Lollapalooza: the sun was out, there was a nice breeze in the air, and most of the mud from Saturday's torrential downpour had dried. I enjoyed a few bands and then decided to do something that I've never done at Lolla before: I opted to go home early. It was not without much contemplation, but in the end, the thought of rest and relaxation trumped my desire to see more bands (and the ones I wanted to see but missed - I'm talking to you, Jack White - I'll surely see down the road). What can I say? When a girl needs her beauty rest, she needs her beauty rest! (Didn't see my Friday and Saturday Lolla posts? Click on the days to check them out!) Until next year, Lolla...

I arrived in time to catch the end of electronic duo, Nadastrom's, set.

Diet Coke commercial?

Little Dragon was one of the bands I was most excited to see and they were thoroughly enjoyable.

Little Dragon crowd at Perry's stage 

There are always interesting fashion statements at Lolla. Check out the PBR can rollers in her hair. 

Cool new artsy addition this year? A graffiti area by Perry's stage. I'm a fan. 

Most of the mud had dried from Saturday, but there were definitely parts of the ground to avoid. 

 Sigur Rós was my primary reason for attending Lolla this year. The Icelandic band writes stunningly gorgeous, so-beautiful-it-makes-you-cry kinda songs. I've been weeping myself to sleep listening to them since college, and it was a real treat to finally see them live.

Toro y Moi busting out his chillwave tunes.

 Florence and the Machine was a main Sunday attraction for Lolla-goers. It was hard to see Flo - primarily because there were hundreds of chicks sitting on their boyfriend's shoulders screaming lyrics - but she sounded good.

See ya next year, Lolla!

Friday, August 24, 2012

Lollapalooza: Saturday

Day two of Lollapalooza this year proved to be a muddy one. Of course, it didn't start out that way. When I arrived it was hot - so hot, in fact, that Delta Spirit's Matthew Vasquez was dumping buckets of water on the crowd. But minutes after they finished their set, I noticed Lolla stage crew technicians breaking down the stage. I asked a security guard what the deal was and he informed me that the entire festival was shutting down because of a severe thunderstorm warning. Thanks to that security guard, I was out the gates and in a cab headed home before Lolla officially announced the evacuation. I've weathered my fair share of storms in past years at Lolla, but that was the first evacuation in the fest's history. Fortunately, the storm passed fairly quickly and despite having to cancel a few acts, Lolla reopened the gates a couple hours later.

Delta Spirit put on a good show before the crowd was evacuated.

Fans began filing out as word of a storm evacuation spread. 

Hours later, the fans returned to MUD. Lots of it. 

tUnE-yArDs was my first stop upon returning to Grant Park. Merrill Garbus and company quickly got the crowd fired up and back into the festival spirit.

The Weeknd brought his R & B goodness to the Red Bull Soundstage and got everyone grooving.

Remind me to get myself one of these fabulous suits for next year.

puddles and mud, puddles and mud 

After The Weeknd got everyone grooving, Bloc Party took over and got the crowd rocking.

Nothing like sitting on someone's shoulders and pounding a beer. 

a sea of people 

 Despite getting a late start because of some technical difficulties, Twin Shadow's mix of '80s and new wave got me dancing.

Frank Ocean was one of my Saturday highlights. This kid can sing. 

Santigold was my other Saturday highlight. I'll definitely be seeing her live again in the future.

Santigold had a massive crowd at Perry's stage. 

I was able to catch the end of Red Hot Chili Peppers' set. I haven't seen them since I was 15, but they're still awesome live. I've got nothing but love for these dudes.

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Lollapalooza: Friday

After an eventful week, the Friday of Lollapalooza arrived and Grant Park filled with thousands of sweaty, neon-clad, music fans for the seventh year in a row. As usual, I had a blast despite feeling pretty old (because apparently you're old the minute you're not a baby hipster now). Below is a recap of day 1. More to come...

Dr Dog was a solid way to kick off the weekend. Good old psychedelic rock 'n roll.

My psychedelic journey continued with Australia's Tame Impala. I've seen them a couple times now and I always enjoy their sunny, sprawling tunes.

SBTRKT was one of my Lolla highlights. I just love these guys.

Now, on Friday, it's not uncommon to see people (a.k.a. 17-year-olds) completely hammered by sunset. There are always fans who overdo it on the first day of a festival (a.k.a. 17-year-olds). Unfortunately for me, I happened to be surrounded by a herd of them during Passion Pit's set, so I didn't get to enjoy it as much as I'd hoped. Such is the nature of the music fest, though. 

Dawes brought the Americana folk to Lolla on Friday. Pretty stuff.

DJ Zebo wins the "WTF" award for Friday. I was walking to get a spot for Black Sabbath and couldn't help but stop and observe the stage antics. 

It always cool to see some legends live, so I was obviously stoked to see the Godfathers of Heavy Metal, Black Sabbath. I have to say, in my years of going to Lolla, I've never seen more people (a) at the Bud Light stage in general - it was legitimately hard to move - and (b) in leather. It was awesome.