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Lollapalooza 2014 Day Two: Rage On!

By Staff in Arts & Entertainment on Aug 3, 2014 6:00PM

12:11 p.m. Is it too early for bourbon? No? Thank god. We've got a loooong day ahead of us. Saturday is historically the wildest day of the Lollapalooza weekend—no one has to work and everyone can get their personal party started early—so let's see what the day holds in store for us. — Jim Kopeny / Tankboy

1:32 p.m. I caved and bought a 3-day pass from a friend of a friend. On my way to meet her for the goods. — Michelle Meywes (MM)

1:45 p.m. I’m not going to make it to see how Parquet Courts’ festival set compares to their aftershow last night. On the walk from the train, I encounter a girl hugging the sidewalk, her face resting on a greasy box while other teens sit on the curb next to her shoveling their faces with pizza. I stop to check on her and her friends yank her upright insisting she’s fine. The girl is hunched over leaning against a wall, and when I stress that someone needs to get her home a friend replies, “but we live all the way in Wilmette.”

Abandoning the festival is not an option for this crew. “Is there a Starbucks nearby that we can have her sit in for a few hours?” So you get this girl too messed up to form words and your solution is to simply dump her in a coffee shop to rot while you go party for the next eight hours? Luckily, I can wipe the horror from my expression as the medic pulls up at that moment to cart her to what’s hopefully a better fate. — Jessica Mlinaric (JM)

1:59 p.m. Wristband acquired. Lolla, here I come! — MM

3:10 p.m. Kate Nash is owning the festival setting. Running from side to side along the stage in formidable platforms and a fiery red cape, Nash is energetic and endearing. It’s been awhile since I’ve listened to her clever pop offerings—but wait did she go punk? The edgier vibe is working as Nash leads an all-female band on a stage set to what looks like a high school dance. It’s a de facto sock hop up there when she leads a lucky group of fans onstage to dance, and then run through the crowd. All fingertips reach for the sky when she sings, “My fingertips are holding onto the cracks in our foundations,” but it’s clear Kate Nash is on solid ground. — JM

3:20 p.m. Decided to try out some Beats headphones at the Hard Rock Music Lounge and lost myself for like 20 minutes listening to alt-J. — MM

Photo by Jim Kopeny / Tankboy

3:41 p.m. The Last Internationale is falling apart on the BMI Stage! Delia Paz has knocked her mic stand out of commission with her bass guitar, the guitar has crapped out and there’s a loose cymbal stand. After a few quick adjustments and a new guitar amplifier wheeled onto the stage, the band is back on track. They end the set with a blistering version of their song “1968.” Nice recovery kids. — Casey Moffitt (CM)

3:50 p.m. En route to retrieve the day’s second bottle of Thorny Rose and I stop in my tracks to take in how packed the north end of the grounds are already —JM

4:00 p.m. Bros are lined up taking a leak along the fence at the south end of Columbus. Is this a thing? — JM

4:06 p.m. Standing at Buckingham Fountain, our designated 4 p.m. meeting point, waiting for friends. Confession: I actually kind of like going back to basics since you can’t count on cell service at the fest. You have to actually think ahead and plan, and it’s that much more exciting when you run into old friends by chance! — MM

4:09 p.m. “Acid?” my fellow long-hair asks. This is an offer that’s easy to resist. I’ve still got a long day ahead of me and a longer night of filing copy. Even if I was slightly interested, I can’t be eating acid now. Besides, there’s a lesson I learned a long time ago—never buy drugs from strangers. — CM

Amateur gymnasts? Photo by Jim Kopeny / Tankboy
4:15 p.m. Fitz and the Tantrums have a massive crowd and the kids seem to be enjoying the harmless funk rock blend they’re serving up. To me, though, they seem to be the perfect example of an awful festival band. They specialize in serving up competent tunes that are so surgically delivered they’re bled of all life and soul. But hey, the kids love ‘em. Let’s hear it for media companies and ad buys that require just this sort of inoffensive boilerplate! — JK/T

4:16 p.m. John Butler has asked the rest of his trio leave the Palladia Stage to “change up the pace a little bit.” He’s sat down with his acoustic guitar and things are about to get mellow. I’m looking around and seeing a lot of Hawaiian shirts and backwards baseball caps around me. And it’s hot standing on the asphalt. Did that cat in a Coors Light hockey sweater just light a cigar? This scene is the pits. There’s too much else going on around this festival to hang out here. Let’s jet boogie! — CM

4:29 p.m. Welp, we’ve finally discovered something more annoying that folks filming bands with their cellphones; GoPros on monopods are a huge thing this year. Ugh. — JK/T

4:35 pm. “Chicago kicked off Fitz and the Tantrums’ entire career,” Michael Fitzpatrick announces. The band’s soulful pop take on the Eurythmics' "Sweet Dreams" inspires an older couple in front of me to shake it at amorous lengths and it’s kind of heartwarming. - JM

4:40 p.m. Fitz and the Tantrums introduces the band and then does a terrible cover of “Sweet Dreams.” Annie Lennox would not be pleased. — MM

5:09 p.m. I journey to the belly of the beast catch Gramatik at Perry’s. Smack in the middle of the mayhem, it’s not so bad. Actually, it smells like someone kicked over a port a potty, but I assume kids are just shitting themselves over these bass drops. I pose for pictures with someone in full viking regalia. Up on the elevated stage, dude busts out a flute. It’s an “anything goes” party that I’m glad to attend. — JM

5:17 p.m. ZOMG, I just ran into Kennedy in the media area. KENNEDY! I didn’t recognize her but luckily RedEye’s Ernest Wilkins has a sharper eye than I and he boldly approached her to make the introductions. ‘90s Tankboy is swooning. — JK/T

Time to eat! Photo by Jessica Mlinaric

5:30 p.m. Chubby wieners! Cheese fries! Red Bull! More Thorny Rose! If you’re looking for veggie food options, my pal gives their vegetarian dog a thumbs up. - JM

5:45 p.m. I’ll have to settle for some shots of Nas from the crowd, because there’s no way I’m getting up front. Nasty Nas deserves a bigger stage, but the crowd is happy to pack it in and sing along. As he performs “Street Dreams” I realize it’s the second Eurythmic’s sample I’ve heard in as many hours. Right now, the emcee kind of does rule the world. - JM

5:46 p.m. Some dudebro just pretended he had to barf to cut in front of everyone in line for the porta potty. Everyone booed him while he peed. Poor form, bro. — MM

5:45 p.m. It’s time to break down and grab my first beer of the day. Here’s a stand with no lines! I’m not telling where. — CM

5:49 p.m. Martin Garrix really kicked it up at Perry’s. Gramatik before him was pretty downtempo and chill. Now it’s heavy beats and blasting smoke from the stage--this is more what I expected over here. — MM

5:53 p.m. Now there are girls doing cheerleader-style basket tosses at Perry’s. — MM

6:07 p.m. Waited too long to make my way back to the Palladia Stage to catch Nas’ set. It sounds like mud waaaaaay back here and it’s more annoying than fun. Rats. I’ll be kicking myself for a long time over this gaffe. — CM

6:20 p.m. Foster the People suffer from the same deficit of soul as Fitz and the Tantrums—but at least their songs are sharper and more engaging. The fact that I don’t want to run screaming speaks volumes. What really surprises me is the volume of people singing along to every word of every tune. I had always assumed they were known for a single hit and not much else, but it appears this crowd has eagerly digested the whole catalog. — JK/T

6:43 p.m. Seriously, so many people are singing along to Foster the People. How do they know the words to these songs? They're totally interchangeable! — JK/T

Spoon waaaaaay off in the distance. Photo by Jim Kopeny / Tankboy.

6:45 p.m. I have to remind myself to stand still while shooting Spoon. As Michelle mentioned yesterday, their new material, from an album to be released next week fits well alongside old standbys. Britt Daniel describes their new single “Inside Out” as a chill one, and it’s a great time to relax and enjoy the view of festival dancing while I take down two more bottles of Thorny Rose (if you’re keeping track, I’m splitting all of these). - JM

7 p.m. Nothing's going to beat the show we saw them play at Metro Friday night (full review of that is coming up tomorrow) but Spoon delivers another terrific set. — JK/T

7:01 p.m. Vic Mensa is parading around the BMI Stage with his inflatable girlfriend, Sasha Gray, as he performs “Major Pain.” I can catch glimpses of her through all the “Vic Fucking Mensa” signs between me and the stage. Mensa has got this crowd whipped into a frenzy, and the kids are running from all directions towards the stage to catch this guy’s set. It’s a pretty wild scene here. — CM

Sad sunglasses. Did you lose these? Photo by Jim Kopeny / Tankboy
7:15 p.m. In one of those agonizing festival decisions, I’ve got to skip Vic Mensa and Jenny Lewis if I want a chance at shooting Outkast. How were they you guys? - JM

7:18 p.m. Since leaving Kids These Days, I haven’t been blown away by Vic Mensa’s solo material. It’s not often that a rapper can win you over with a live performance if you aren’t a big fan of his (or her) studio tracks but Vic is doing just that right now on the BMI Stage. His set is controlled chaos. It’s, dare I say, a more composed (read: better) show than Chance the Rapper’s spastic outburst on the same stage last year. Speaking of Chano, there he is! The two Chicago rappers burn through a couple of verses onstage together. Something tells me my view of Chance won’t be nearly this good when he headlines Perry’s stage tomorrow night. — KK

7:37 p.m. There’s nothing quite like a broken arm to turn your summer into a bummer. But one lucky fan in the front row of the Lake Shore Stage just got his cast signed by Josiah Johnson of The Head and the Heart. Things are looking up for that guy. Johnson has been hamming it up since the band hit the stage. This is his second trip off the stage to give high fives to the crowd. He’s been mugging for the camera and getting in the faces of his bandmates. I can’t tell if Jonathan Russell is annoyed by Johnson’s antics or just ambivalent to them. — CM

7:57 p.m. Finally made the smart decision to grab something to eat. Catching a little of Jenny Lewis across the street at the Grove while I shove this burger in my face. I listened to a bit of her new album and thought it was pretty sleepy, but she kicks up the rock and babe-ism when performing live. — MM

7:58 p.m. Jenny Lewis’ voice is beautiful and her songs are catchy, but she just feels like a varnished and warmed over Stevie Nicks. I do have to admit that when she drops the preciousness and let’s her inner viper loose that the results hint at what she could be capable of. A particularly seething version of “Moneymaker” shows that there is something writhing and dangerous deep inside Lewis and I wish we’d seen more of that. — JK/T

8 p.m. Is it just me or are there a lot of Cavs jerseys in Grant Park today? Maybe I’ll rock my Ilgauskas throwback tomorrow. — JM

8:10 p.m. Just got a tap on the shoulder from a couple of old friends!! They’re part of the crew I hung with at most of the past Lollas, including the first one back in Chicago back in ‘05. You know, the one where the fest only took up the grounds south of the fountain? Memories. — MM

8:15 p.m. It’s a muffled rendition of “B.O.B.” from behind my ear plugs because the bass is bangin' up in the Outkast photo pit. It’s elbow-to-elbow up here and there’s no room to reposition, but I try to take in as the first three songs whip by in a frenzy. - JM

8:37 p.m. Coachella got fucked. And we got the Outkast set everybody had been hoping for. I dive through the crowd to get a better feel for the scene and EVERYONE around me is dancing. Usually, when things get this packed, some aggro gets thrown around but, in this instance, I think everyone has been transported to an earlier more innocent state of mind and all they want to do is have fun. It’s a pretty great vibe to take in. I’m happy I was wrong on all counts when I worried that this show would be a letdown. — JK/T

8:38 p.m. Andre 3000 has just declared all of us Lollapawinners and I’m inclined to agree with him. — JK/T

Fireworks over Outkast. Photo by Jim Kopeny / Tankboy
8:51 p.m. Fireworks are exploding over the Samsung Galaxy stage and Outkast has just launched into “Ms. Jackson.” Every rump within eyesight is grooving and shaking. The party train has pulled into the station. Let’s take a ride! — CM

9 p.m. Back in the crowd, people freak out when Big Boi gets into "Kryptonite (I'm on It).” We look to the stage hopefully for Killer Mike, but there’s no sign of him. I’m jumping up and down at this point and won’t stop dancing for the entire set, perfectly punctuated by fireworks behind the stage. It looked like even Outkast was enjoying each other before closing another memorable festival moment with “The Whole World.” - JM

9:20 p.m. Cut Copy is delivering a killer set based heavily on the early ‘90s acid house rave style of their last album, Free Your Mind. And the crowd is eating it up. This is the vibe of Perry’s stage without the violence. What’s striking, though, is just how much darkness and dread streams at the base of these songs. To free one’s mind is a worthy pursuit but one can’t ignore that he results of doing so mean flinging your being into the unknown. Pretty heady stuff for a dance set but I love it. — JK/T

9:37 p.m. Michael Scott, Cut Copy’s drummer, is celebrating a birthday today. The rest of the band is going to let him play his favorite song. Party on, Michael! — CM

Cut Copy wants to free your mind. Photo by Jim Kopeny / Tankboy
9:55 p.m. Cut Copy unleashes “Lights and Music” on the crowd and I can’t fathom how people walking the stage to exit the fest aren’t just diving in and joining the party. — JK/T

10:07 p.m. Walking out of the gates en masse, the Lolla crowd does that thing where everyone spontaneously bursts into “Just A Friend.” — JM

10:24 p.m. The Hard Rock line is insanely long but, luckily for me, through the grace of a friend and via a series of passwords I thought only The Safe House still used, we’re ushered in. This particularly party can get overwhelming, but I generally have a good time and it’s a great chance to see some of the emerging artists in a small room. This year the artist I’m most looking forward to seeing on the bill is Betty Who. — JK/T

11:15 p.m. Grouplove is DJing the Hard Rock party and I think they just played their own song? Or one that sounds just like them. Are either of those tacky moves or am I just being too critical? — JK/T

11:45 pm. No one at the Hard Rock seems to know who Betty Who is, but I guess that’s what festivals are for. The Aussie popstress plays a handful of her singles and I’m dancing on my own, covered in someone’s spilled whipped cream flavored vodka. — JM

11:47 p.m. I can’t see Jessica, but Michelle and I are definitely getting down with Betty Who. Her performance is filled with such energy and joy, and her pipes are massive and easily deliver soul anthem after soul anthem. — JK/T

12:35 a.m. I’m entering the Blue Line platform at Clark/Lake. As I walk down the steps and around the corner a security dog leaps on me, barking and attempting to take a chomp out of my arm. The dog is muzzled, but the red marks on my arm from where the metal grated my skin will linger for hours. I scream and look to the security official for some acknowledgement but he ignores me. I’m in shock and by the time I turn around to have it out with him, the official and the dog have disappeared. WHAT THE FUCK? — JM

1:56 a.m. I’ve been trying to file a police report to document the dog attack, but after being shuffled between operators, 311 finally hangs up on me. I’ve been told that I can’t file a report because I left the scene. One operator insinuates that I must have done something wrong because K-9 dogs respond to a person carrying a bomb or drugs or threatening an office. None of those situations apply to me. I’m starting to feel more attacked by these humans than the dog. Time to get some rest. — JM

2:01 p.m. We’re packed in a cab and after hearing from Jessica we’re just grateful everyone’s safe. — JK/T

You can also read our recaps of Friday and Sunday as well if you missed them.