Lollapalooza 2008

Lollapalooza’s Austin, Texas-based promoters C3 Presents are not scheduled to make their official announcement of the acts performing at this year’s weekend-long music festival in Grant Park until Monday, but the Sun-Times has confirmed through industry sources all of the major artists.

Art-rock giants Radiohead and Nine Inch Nails, the reunited Rage Against the Machine, Jack White’s side project the Raconteurs and hometown heroes Wilco and Kanye West will headline the main stages on Aug. 1-3.

The Raconteurs, Wilco and West will each be making their second appearance at the reinvented destination festival. Other repeaters among the more than 100 acts on this year’s bill are Gnarls Barkley, the Black Keys, Broken Social Scene, G. Love & Special Sauce, Blues Traveler and Mates of State.

Quite a few of the other acts — including many of the most promising — have earlier performed at Chicago’s two independently produced music festivals, Pitchfork and Intonation. These include Bloc Party, Cat Power, Stephen Malkmus, Girl Talk, Kid Sister, Office, the Cool Kids, Battles, the Go! Team, Jamie Lidell and Grizzly Bear.

With arguably the strongest line-up of headliners since Jane's Addiction frontman Perry Farrell began his traveling alternative music fest Lollapalooza back in '91, the success of this annual festival (now in its permanent home through 2011 in Chicago's beautiful Grant Park) is stronger than ever. With headliners such as Radiohead, Rage Against The Machine and Chicago's own Wilco topping the bills for Friday and Saturday those two days have already sold-out prior to their respective dates - with Sunday's closing acts Nine Inch Nails and Kanye West also coming extremely close to selling out.

While the original successful formula for Lollapalooza lost its vision and, ultimately, its profit margin, the then still-traveling festival was cancelled, before Farrell again gave it another shot in 2003 and 2004 only to again cancel due to lack of interest and ticket sales. It wasn't until Farrell partnered with promoters C3 Presents (then Capital Sports & Entertainment) The Killsand Charles Attal Presents that they decided to use Chicago as the festival's only annual location in 2005. Since then the fest has regained the creative momentum and success of its glory years when alt-rock and grunge were just taking their first steps in the early '90s.

Lollapalooza 2008 Review

This past weekend, I went to the massive Lollapalooza festival in Grant Park. Three long days and dozens of bands later, I am completely and utterly wiped out. No matter, it was a great time. What follows is a recap of my virtually sports-free experience.

Before I went to the show, I went over the schedule and visited the myspace page for practically every artist on the bill. Myspace is a great, legal way to sample full songs from pretty much any artist out there. (Has been for years, apparently. Welcome to 2003!) So I went over the bill, circled some "must sees" and crossed out the bands didn't immediately fall in line with my musical tastes. It might be a bit brutal to eliminate a band after 30 seconds, but there's only so many times you can trek across Grant Park in a day, right? On with the show.

On Friday, I decided to go to work and save my "day off" for Monday. (This no-longer-21-year-old needs at least a day to recoup.) So I didn't get to the festival until 3:30 or so, or just in time to see The Black Keys. The blues-rock two-piece band from Akron, Ohio, didn't disappoint. I enjoy their earlier albums, in particular "Rubber Factory" from 2004, but their new one really elevates them into new territory. Produced by Danger Mouse, "Attack and Release" is like the Black Keys on steroids. Since Gnarls Barkley was on the bill this weekend, I was hoping for a cameo. No luck in that, but honestly they didn't need him. Their sound was full enough.

From there, I caught some Cat Power on my way to and from the beer tent. This indie rock veteran was a pleasing enough diversion while I waited for the next act. Did I mention it was blistering hot on Friday? The sun was just brutal. A giant, dark cloud went over for a few minutes and it received a standing ovation.

The Schedule:

Friday August 1st
Bud Light Stage
12:15-1:15 p.m. Black Lips
2:15-3:15 p.m. The Go! Team
4:15-5:15 p.m. The Black Keys
6:15-7:45 p.m. The Raconteurs

Play Station 3 Stage
11:30 a.m.-12:15 p.m. K'NAAN
1:15-2:15 p.m. Butch Walker
3:15-4:15 p.m. Duffy
5:15-6:15 p.m. Cat Power

BMI Stage
11:15-11:45 a.m. We Go To 11
12:15-1 p.m. Magic Wands
1:30-2:15 p.m. The Parlor Mob
2:45-3:30 p.m. Electric Touch
4-4:45 p.m. Black Joe Lewis & The Honeybears
5:15-6 p.m. Your Vegas
6:15-7 p.m. Weapon
7-8 p.m. The Cool Kids

Kidz Stage
11:30 a.m.-noon Suzy Brack and the New Jack Lords
12:15-12:45 Paul Green's School of Rock All-Stars
Special Guest
1:30-2 p.m. The Dream Jam Band
2:15-2:45 The Terrible Twos
Jeff Tweedy
3:15-4 p.m. Tiny Masters of Today

Citi Stage
noon-12:30 p.m. Sofia Talvik
1-1:45 p.m. Manchester Orchestra
2:15-3 p.m. The Enemy UK
3:15-4 p.m. Louis XIV
4:30-5:15 p.m. Free Sol
5:45-6:30 p.m. Grizzly Bear
7-8 p.m. CSS

Myspace Stage
11:30 a.m.-12:15 p.m. Bang Camaro
1:15-2:15 Rogue Wave
3:15-4:15 The Kills
5:15-6:15 Mates of State
7:15-8 p.m. Stephen Malkmus & The Jicks

AT&T Stage
12:15-1:15 p.m. Noah and The Whale
2:15-3:15 p.m. Yeasayer
4:15-5:15 p.m. Gogol Bordello
6:15-7:15 p.m. Bloc Party
8 p.m. Radiohead

Saturday August 2nd
Bud Light Stage
12:30-1:30 p.m. Does It Offend You, Yeah?
2:30-3:30 p.m. Dierks Bentley
4:30-5:30 p.m. Explosions in the Sky
6:30-7:30 p.m. Broken Social Scene
8:30 p.m. Wilco

Play Station 3 Stage
11:45 a.m.-12:30 p.m. De Nobo Dahl
1:30-2:30 p.m. Mason Jennings
3:30-4:30 p.m. DeVotchKa
5:30-6:30 p.m. Okkervil River
7:30-8:30 p.m. Sharon Jones & the Dap Kings

BMI Stage
11:15 a.m.-noon Krista
12:30-1:15 p.m. The Postelles
1:45-2:30 p.m. Innerpartysystem
3-3:45 p.m. Steel Train
4:15-5 p.m. Serena Ryder
5:15-6 p.m. DJ Bald Eagle
6-7 p.m. Uffie

Kidz Stage
11:30 a.m.-noon The Dream Jam Band
12:15-12:45 Tiny Masters of Today
1:15-1:45 p.m. The Jimmies
2:15-2:45 The Terrible Twos
Special Guest
3:30-4 p.m. Homemade Jamz' Blues Band

Citi Stage
noon-12:30 p.m. Witchcraft
1-1:45 p.m. Ferras
2:15-3 p.m. Booka Shade
5-6 p.m. Spank Rock
6:30-7:30 p.m. Battles

Myspace Stage
11:30 a.m.-noon Last Band Standing
12:15-12:45 p.m. Margot & the Nuclear So and So's
1:30-2:30 p.m. Dr. Dog
3:30-4:30 p.m. MGMT
5:30-6:30 p.m. Jamie Lidell
7:30-8:30 p.m. Toadies

AT&T Stage
12:45-1:30 p.m. The Ting Tings
2:30-3:30 p.m. The Gutter Twins
4:30-5:30 p.m. Brand New
6:30-7:30 p.m. Lupe Fiasco
8:30 p.m. Rage Against the Machine

Sunday August 3nd
Bud Light Stage
12:30-1:15 p.m. White Lies
2:15-3:15 p.m. John Butler Trio
4:15-5:15 p.m. Iron & Wine
6:15-7:15 p.m. Love and Rockets
8:15 p.m. Nine Inch Nails

Play Station 3 Stage
11:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m. Office
1:15-2:15 p.m. The Weakerthans
3:15-4:15 p.m. Amadou & Mariam
5:15-6:15 p.m. Flogging Molly
7:15-8:15 p.m. The National

BMI Stage
11:15 a.m.-noon Ha Ha Tonka
12:30-1:15 p.m. Wild Sweet Orange
1:45-2:30 p.m. Tally Hall
3-3:45 p.m. Newton Faulkner
4:15-5 p.m. Eli "Paperboy" Reed & the True Loves

Kidz Stage
11:30 a.m.-noon Q Brothers
John Butler Trio
12:15-12:45 Homemade Jamz' Blues Band
1:15-1:45 p.m. The Jimmies
2:15-2:45 Peter DiStefano & Tor
G. Love & Special Sauce
3:15-4 p.m. Paul Green's School of Rock All-Stars

Citi Stage
noon-12:30 p.m. The Blakes
1-1:45 p.m. What Made Milwaukee Famous
2:15-3 p.m. Nicole Atkins & the Sea
3:30-4:30 p.m. Black Kids
5-6 p.m. Saul Williams
6:30-7:30 p.m. Girl Talk

Myspace Stage
11:30 a.m.-12:15 p.m. The Octopus Project
1:15-2:15 p.m. The Whigs
3:15-4:15 p.m. Chromeo
5:15-6:15 p.m. Blues Traveler
7:15-8:30 p.m. Mark Ronson

AT&T Stage
12:15-1:15 p.m. Kid Sister
2:15-3:15 p.m. Brazilian Girls
4:15-5:15 p.m. G. Love & Special Sauce
6:15-7:15 p.m. Gnarls Barkley
8:30 p.m. Kanye West