Sunday, July 27, 2008

Lolla Lineup Cliff Notes - Friday

I did this exercise for Pitchfork and it proved to be not only helpful (at least for me), but surprisingly accurate in its predictive power. So now, I am going through each of the acts on the Lollapalooza Lineup. The number is a 1-10 level of my interest in seeing them and is followed by a brief, "from the gut" synopsis of the band. Click on any of the band names to get to their myspace and listen for yourself! Let us know what you think and what you're pumped up to see in the comments section.

The Schedule

We Go to 11 - 2 Teenage brothers - really sloppy heavy rock.
K'NAAN - 6 Peppy hip-hop with ambient backing music and socially conscious lyrics.
Bang Camaro - 5 18-person hard-riffin metal act. The thing is, 14 of the members play "lead vocals." Pretty much a joke, but a welcome one.
Sofia Talvik - 3 Bright, shimmery acoustic pop, plus she's cute.
Black Lips - 7 Bouncy garage rock, with irreverent shouty vocals.
Holy F*ck - 7 Not just a great name, they feature dirty, aggressive beats. Would be much better after dark, though.
Magic Wands - 3 Pretty low-key. Reminds me of Drugstore, but sleepy.
Manchester Orchestra - 5 Very Bright Eyes, but with just a bit of an edge. Do with that what you will.
Butch Walker - 1 Standard, boring straight ahead adult contemporay rock. What is he doing here? Get your ass back to Lite FM!
Rogue Wave - 8 I always struggle to describe these guys. Pretty indie rawk. It's too pretty, but I still likes it.
The Parlor Mob - 1 Cheesy blues-rock with hair-band vocals. Like, say, Aerosmith's "Same Old Song And Dance." How fitting.
The Go! Team - 7 Their sound has tired for me since they played Lolla 2 years ago, but this cheerleader-led, bubbly outfit played a darn good set then.
The Enemy UK - 3 Almost impossibly British. But beyond that, they sound just like Dashboard Confessional. So let's call 'em Windscreen Confessional.
Yeasayer - 8 Probably considered experimental folk. After a few listens, I've been really won over. They have the potential to give a GREAT performance. Or a mediocre one. But I'm excited to find out.
Electric Touch - 2 Overproduced, cheesy guitar rock meets cheesy dance rock.
Duffy - 5 Acoustic soul residing between Norah Jones and Amy Winehouse.
Louix XIV - 6 Punchy, ramshackle rock always on the verge of breaking apart w/ intentionally raw vocals and either strings or piano on nearly every track.
The Kills - 7 The dark side to Mates of States' light. Male/female duo with just drums, guitar and their voices.
Black Joe Lewis & The Honeybears - 3 Really groovy blues with an attempt at soul. But the dude can't sing very well, so what's the point?
The Black Keys - 7 Raw, dirty blues coming from just one guitar and a simple drum kit, but they manage to fuzz their way to a variety of powerful tunes.
Gogol Bordello - 9 They call their music Gypsy Punk, and that's probably about right. Eastern European punk with acordians. You understand.
Free Sol - 5 Soulful Hip-hop, like a baby Gnarls with a splash of NERD.
Cat Power - 7 Chan Marshall sports a soft but powerful voice and has gotten over her difficulty with live performances that used to derail her shows.
Your Vegas - 1 A really, really cheesy version of Stabbing Westward meets an even cheesier version of The Killers meets Keane (who is cheesy enough on their own). Have fun with that.
Mates of State - 8 Totally won me over when they played two years ago. Husband and wife duo playing cheery, beautiful indie pop.
Grizzly Bear - 8 Technically folk, with four-part harmonies and all kinds of instruments in the mix. Not sure how it will play at a festival as it requires patience, quiet and attentiveness. But I'm hopeful.
The Raconteurs - 5 Jack White of the White Stripes and Brendan Benson. It's basically rock with the slightest twang. I can't seem to get into them. Plus, they only have clips of their songs streaming on myspace, not the complete tracks. That's annoying.
Cadence Weapon - 2 I don't know why, but this gives me the feeling of the creators of South Park rapping. It's too fast and monotone. And it's giving me a headache.
Bloc Party - 9 Their initial release, Silent Alarm, was one of the best new albums we've received. The follow-up, more meh. But I'm still psyched to see this high energy, rockin' outfit from London.
The Cool Kids - 4 Modern hip-hop. Thin instrumentation focused mainly on the vocals.
CSS - 6 Dance rock akin to Basement Jaxx or Justice w/ female vocals and busy beats, but also venturing into more straight-ahead indie rawk. My brother says they're hilarious.
Stephen Malkmus & The Jicks - 3 The former frontman of Pavement has never done it for me. He played Pitchfork last year and didn't do it for me then either. Maybe he does it for you. That's your perogative just as it is mine to be thoroughly bored by him.
Radiohead - 10 Never seen 'em. Had the chance to go to the 2001 Hutchinson Field show that made these Lollapalooza festivals possible and like an idiot chose not to go. It's rare that we get a chance to make up for missed opportunities, but there you are.

So that's an even stronger day than I initially believed. Saturday and Sunday notes will be up later tomorrow and Tuesday, respectively. Your thoughts on any bands I may be overlooking would be much appreciated!

Jim Derogatis' Preview


Anonymous said...

Give JBT a second chance. A 1 is pretty harsh.

Reed said...

Let me clarify a bit. JBT are neo-hippie. They do sing about fast food. However, they seem like they can play pretty well. Tight enough and good harmonies on vocals (when they're singing). Still, I gave 'em another listen and they're just sooooo not my thing. So the 1 stands for me. But anyone who's into bands like Umphrey's Magee will probably think they're really good. Anon, feel free to clarify my comments as you know the band better than I do. Thanks for the input!

Anonymous said...

I am probably most excited for yeasayer. Their set should be amazing. Check out their take away show or the Jools Holland perfomance. Both are incredible.