Photography by Chris Rotolo
On opening day of Perry Farrell’s musical Carnival, Lollapalooza, The French-bred soundscape construction crew that is M83 brought forth a series of shoegazing Electo-Rock under the cover of moonlit “darkness” on The Sony Stage, which included its transcendent breakthrough hit “Midnight City,” but drew an incomparable crowd to that of The Prince Of Darkness, Ozzy Osbourne, and the recently reunited Black Sabbath, that’s spirited exhibit of Heavy-Metal will go down, not only as a highlight of this Lollapalooza edition, but in the annals of the festival’s history.
Children tossed up horns with their fathers, couples made out, ex football players slammed about belligerently while Sabbath, which included both Tony Iommi and Geezer Butler, provided a soundtrack full of classic cuts including “Sweet Leaf,” “NIB,” “War Pigs,” “Iron Man,” and an encore of “Paranoid.”
Prior Sabbath’s headlining event, which coincided with performances by The Black Keys, WALE, and Bassnectar, the early evening held one of the worst conflicts of the weekend, Passion Pit vs The Shine…and what’s worse, at opposite ends of Grant Park:
Michael Angelakos didn’t look frail nor gaunt nor mentally unstable, as were the various reasons why he and the Boston-based Passion Pit canceled various performances leading up to its heavily attended set at on the Bud Light Stage (including Firefly Festival). The front-man reveled in the adoration spit forth by the congregation set before him, inducing the idea that the group’s time away from the stage, despite a disappointment to fans of the shimmering Electro-Pop collective, may have been a blessing in disguise, as its Friday evening showcase saw the singer bounce about the planks during such cuts as “Little Secrets,” “Sleepyhead,” and future setlist staples from the recently released Gossamer “Carried Away” and the opening number “Take A Walk.”
After making the lengthy trek East to the Red Bull Soundstage, a nap of sorts was in order, and a shady patch of grass amidst a collection of debaucherous teens in search of a lost weekend, sipping warm Southern Comfort from a dusty bottle, while James Mercer cued up “New Slang” of Garden State fame.
Metric followed The Black Angels’ spacious metal-coated jaunt through the thick black cosmos, as the first true main draw on the Bud Light Stage displayed a confident assuredness only a road warrior outfit that considers this festival the closest thing it has to a home can. “” drew the audience in with sleek playfulness akin to that of a tamed jungle cat, before unleashing a candy-coated roar on such classic metric cuts as “guns and girls” and a performance closing “stadium love.”
Die Antword’s “” was far less cunning. From the first electronic shock wave cast upon the south african hip hop troupe’s faithful patronage, the arsenic licked pint size lotus in gold spandex, was abrasive, aggressive, explosive, and other descriptors of the sort, spewing fire, secreting arsenic licked couplets alongside her domineering partner in rhyme “,” offering no more than a subdued “thank you” in a child like whisper after “fweaky.”
EDM remix duo The White Panda took to Perry Farrel’s personal platform for a hometown gig that explored Gotyes “Somebody I Ssed To Know” and Gary Glitter’s “Rock N’ Roll Part 1″ while a sweat soaked mass of fist pumpers were provided an example of why its not the best idea to drop psychedelics in 90-degree heat, as several patrons, including a tie died member who slithered down my arm my like a limp sardine out of can before hitting the deck with an eerie thud, was taken out of the party on a gurney.
Rather than rave pills and powders, Yellow Ostrich and Tame Impala used their brand of distorted Rock to alter the state of patron’s minds on The Sony Stage, with such animalistic ambience as “Whale,” while the latter utilized such shoegazing, Pop driven, compositions as “Elephant” and the elongated jam “Apocalypse Dreams,” both from the group’s forthcoming full-length Lonerism.
Animal kingdom’s first stateside festival appearance was surrounded by knee quaking parameters, as the group was chosen to open the most grandiose of summertime circuit stops, and the England-based Indie-rockers met the challenge with a collection soaring compositions, some smothered in foggy loch emitance, such as “Skipping Disc,” while mixing in such dance numbers as “Strange Attractor.” First aid kit and its sultry set of melodious Folk-Rock, which included “Emmylou” and “When I Grow Up,” and chip-tune purveyors Anamanaguchi, who transported a video game soundtrack with Punk at its core, like “Airbrushed” and “Blackout City,” to the great outdoors of Grant Park.
Stay tuned for Day 2 coverage featuring Red Hot Chili Pepers, Frank Ocean, Franz Ferdinand, Alabama Shakes, and more.