“I saw you guys were a little hot out there,” said the lead singer of Phantogram. “So I asked God to bring you some rain.”
The second day of the 20th anniversary of Lollapalooza greeted us with cool sprinkles, but that didn’t stop people from flocking early to Chicago’s Grant Park to catch matinee shows like Fitz & The Tantrums or Maps & Atlases.
Even people who didn’t catch earlier bands came out when the gates opened at 11:00 a.m. to camp out for their favorite headliners, like Eminem.
Super Mash Bros got the dance party started early, packing out the slushy Perry’s tent before 3. The duo strategically mixed classic anthems, shiny-pop, gritty hip-hop and whatever else they could get their hands on. The result was usually somewhere between silly, sexy and smashing. Super Mash Bros have a tendency to make you scream along to their mixes, it may be the only time I’ve seen thousands of sweaty dudes belting out Taylor Swift lyrics.
There’s no need for Death From Above 1979 to introduce themselves before they start a set. The drummer and bassist reunited this year after breaking up in 2006, but their sound is just as fresh and unique as it was when they formed in ’01. Mosh pits formed like tide pools at the Budweiser main stage throughout the aggressive hour-long set, withd no stops to catch your breath. These two guys wreak coolness.
Deftones may be older than a lot of bands at this year’s Lollapalooza, but they throw down with the best of them. Lead singer Chino Moreno cracked an infectious smile in between head slamming screams. The energy that radiates off this band is massive, and at one point Moreno got a little carried away and smashed his microphone into the ground repeatedly. Luckily a replacement was nearby, and the heavy distortion carried on.
Slug of Atmosphere walked on stage with a big grin and waving arm, “Hi Chicago!” The south end of the festival was a steady mob of people at this point, as Cee Lo Green had just finished and people were getting serious about camping out at the main stage. But Slug, Ant and the rest of the band had all the eyes and ears at this point. They played essentials like “Shrapnel” and “Trying To Find A Balance,” and also took the opportunity to introduce many to newer songs from their last album The Family Sign. All were beautifully interpreted with live keyboards and guitar.
You didn’t need to be able to see Eminem to enjoy the show, in fact most people couldn’t by the time he hit stage. But Em, with the help out D12 mate Bizarre acting as hype man, put on one hell of a performance with hits a plenty. Mr. Mathers took us through every emotion imaginable. From triumphant, with his verse on Drake’s “Forever” and new Bad Meets Evil track “Lighters,” which Bruno Mars and Royce Da 5’9” appeared for, to absolutely depressing with “Stan.”
It’s amazing to see how well he transitions between the varying energies of each song. Hands and lighters filled the air at all times, right besides the echoing scream of every lyric. And most everyone knew every single word. There’s never been a happier group of people screaming, “fuck you, Mom!”
And don’t forget, all the action is available for live stream on the Lolla website.