La Bodega

Tales and pictures from our little corner of the world.


Lollallallallapaloooooooza - Grant Part, Chicago, 8/1-8/4

That is me, ready to conquer that massive 120 band, 3 day behemoth of a music festival known as Lollapalooza. As soon as I heard the rumors months ago stating that Radiohead and Nine Inch Nails, two of my favorite bands, would be two of the headliners at this year's fest I knew immediately that I had to go. Thankfully the rumors held true. Not only were Radiohead and NIN two of the headliners, but Wilco, Kanye West, and reformed Rage Against the Machine were the others. Move over Bonnaroo and Coachella, this was to be the summer festival of the year.

Wasting no time with bringing out the main act of the weekend, Radiohead headlined the first day with no other headliner playing at the same time on the opposite end of the festival grounds. This means 75,000 people would be watching one of, if not THE, greatest bands in the world on a nice summer evening; pure Euphoria. First band on the docket were new age/agfro-prog rockers Yeasayer. They put on a fantastic performance that left me wanting to see them in a more intimate setting. Next we hit up The Kills for a couple songs, followed by Gogol Bordello. This was one of the highlights of the first day, as these guys were so intense and full of energy, I am sure they made more than a few new fans with their blend of eastern European themes and Sex Pistols punk.

After GB, we starting thinking about positioning for our spots for the Radiohead show, so we grabbed a bite to eat and went right back to the same stage, where they would take the stage in about 2 hours. Unfortunately everyone else had the same plan and nobody really moved from their spot for the rest of the evening in anticipation. This means we had to sit through Bloc Party rather than see Jack White and the Raconteurs boys. This was a necessary sacrifice, as there will be many more opportunities to see them. Bloc Party's performance was quite forgetful, as they could not live up to the big Lollapalooza stage and the open air seemed to swallow up their sound.

After an hour wait 'Packt like Sardines in a Crushed Tin Box,' Radiohead entered with wide fan fare and opened with '15 Step,' the opening song from In Rainbows. I believe nearly every song from their new album was played, with sprinkles of songs from the rest of their albums. Highlights from the set included an always moving rendition of Fake Plastic Trees, during which fireworks exploded in the night sky as the song reached it climax. Paranoid Android is debatably one of Radiohead's best song in their catalog, and they made fantastic use of their light set-up during this one. In the encore was House of Cards with it's grooving lead guitar hook got a lot of people's hips moving in their own tight spot. National Anthem and Everything in it's Right Place are two of my favorite Radiohead songs. The second encore also contained staple Idioteque and rocker 2+2=5.

Overall, I think it was impossible for Radiohead to live up to the expectation set by anyone after the first time you have seen them, and this held true. All of the songs were great, the light show was fantastic, but I never got chills like I did on the hit summer evening when I saw them in East Troy about 4 years ago. That being said, there is no band like Radiohead and I will see them every chance I get. They will never let down. See below for pictures from my vantage point as well as their set list, and stay tuned for my thoughts on Day 2.

01. 15 Step
02. Airbag
03. There There
04. All I Need
05. Nude
06. Weird Fishes/Arpeggi
07. The Gloaming
08. The National Anthem
09. Faust Arp
10. No Surprises
11. Jigsaw Falling Into Place
12. Reckoner
13. Lucky
14. The Bends
15. Everything In Its Right Place
16. Fake Plastic Trees
17. Bodysnatchers

Encore 1:

18. Videotape
19. Paranoid Android
20. Dollars and Cents
21. House of Cards
22. Optimistic

Encore 2:

23. 2+2=5
24. Idioteque


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