This is the third of WPRB’s four part review of the Pitchfork Music Festival held on July 15-17 in Chicago, Illinois.
by Griffin Winton-LaVieri (WPRB Music Director)
Sunday was the hottest day of them all and I was the most worn out. We saw The Fresh and Onlys, Kurt Vile, and Ariel Pink at the Green Stage but I was too tired and hot to be able to judge them well. Kurt Vile seemed to be well liked by everyone in the crowd. Ariel Pink seemed out of it as he performed, falling down at one point, and left the stage for unexplained reasons half way into the set, thus cutting the set down significantly. Also, Ravi and I made it to the festival grounds first that day.
Sunday was also the day that OFWGKTA performed. We probably made the right decision in not joining the massive crowd but viewing the chaos from afar. It looked like madness. Tyler, the Creator, the front man of Odd Future, despite having a cast on his foot which caused him to hobble, jumped in the crowd on multiple occasions. One of the friendly security gaurds, Jeff, described working it as the hardest thing he’s ever done. Jeff was in Iraq 6 months ago. The meaning of Odd Future and their controversial lyrics has been and will continue to be the theme of many think-pieces. You can make your own call about the whole thing.
Sunday improved as Deerhunter’s set at the Green stage approached. Deerhunter are simply, a quality band. Hits such as “Helicopter”, “Revival”, and “Nothing Ever Happened” were performed. “Nothing Ever Happened” was definitely the highlight as they jammed along – rhythmic and euphoric. No new songs were played but I was fine with that, having never seen them live. Bradford said that they had just returned from the UK and concluded ”It’s good to be back in the USA. Fuck anybody that tells you it isn’t the best country in the world.”
After Deerhunter we got dinner and walk around. Cut Copy was playing so we watched them from afar. It was impressive to see the huge crowd jump up and down as a mass. Cut Copy put on a high energy show and ended with “Need You Now.” I like that song. After Cut Copy was the final headliner, TV on The Radio. I’m not a big fan of them so I persuaded Ravi that we should cut out early as we were going to another after-show. The second song TV on The Radio played was “Dancing Choose” so I felt like we saw at least one important TV on The Radio song and could leave the festival knowing it was a weekend well spent.
We traveled on the “L” to Schubas. The venue struck me as almost equivalent to Maxwell’s, in New Jersey, as it was basically a bar with a room for concerts in back. Unknown Mortal Orchestra opened the show. I haven’t really made up my mind about them but that is more a function of me not listening to them much than anything else. Yuck had played Pitchfork earlier that day but we had missed them so it was worth the trip, time and money. They are pretty heavily indebted to their nineties influences but nonetheless the music they make is enjoyable to listen to and I’m glad I got a chance to see them live.
Overall, the weekend met if not exceeded my expectations. Ravi and I saw pretty much all the bands we wanted to and saw them up close. It was our own summer adventure. We left Chicago the next day separately–tired but happy.
Photo Credit: Ravi Prakriya