Another personal achievement for your host after having attended Austin City Limits last year : Lollapalooza Festival! Created by Perry Farrell (Jane’s Addiction leader) and on a itinerant basis for a few years, Lollapalooza has been held for a few years in Chicago, more precisely in Grant Park, which is the place to be in the summer if you want a bit of wind and freshness near the lake.
I did not succeed in being in Chicago early enough to catch the first two days although the line-up was quite amazing with in particular bands I would have loved very much to see : The Afghan Whigs, M83, Black Sabbath, Alabama Shakes, tUnE-yArDs, Franz Ferdinand, Bloc Party or the Red Hot Chili Peppers! And when you happen to attend the festival, as was the case on Sunday, you have to decide between the seven (!) stages and have to miss great bands such as Justice…
However, excellent shows on Sunday with Poliça, The Walkmen, Sigur Ros, The Gaslight Anthem, Toro Y Moi which I all managed to see partly or in their entirety. A specific reward to the Walkmen whom I saw once more in the middle of the American very hot summer afternoon but who kept on being very elegant on stage and delivering their great set as usual.
At The Drive-In, the punk-harcore-melodic band who split a few years ago giving birth to two good bands (The Mars Volta and Sparta) have been reforming for the summer, playing in a few European and US festivals. I had never been a huge fan of their music although I had read they were amazing live … and ouch! they were indeed. Their singer Cedric Bixler is an incredible powerful, energetic and funny showman and they drove the audience crazy, especially los latinos hermanos!
And then, here came the man himself : Jack White. I can not find the words to describe how I like the guy, either for the music he did before (The White Stripes, The Raconteurs, The Dead Weather) or he does now (his first solo LP is for sure one of the albums of the year) or for what he represents in these fake times. This man is hard-working and dedicated to authenticity in all his actions ; this is a real pleasure to see that he takes advantage of his fame to bring the kids to real good music and the love of it (he is a real vinyl fetichist!). I would recommend to listen to his recent interview on Sound Opinions (show #349) and the DVD done a few years ago with The Edge and Jimmy Page where the three of them talked with passion about their love of music (It Might Get Loud).
Still original, Jack White currently tours with two bands : one made out of men (The Buzzards) and the other one of women (The Peacocks) and he choses every night depending on the mood. The Paris show was great and he had decided to play with the boys that night. But the Lollapalooza show was on another dimension as there was a real sense of celebration. He started with the boys but changed mid-show during an acoustic song to bring us the ladies for the second half. Both bands were great and to my mind if the boys were more soulful, the girls brought more punk energy and enthusiasm.
Please click on the links to get the set lists which mixed all Jack White’s musical periods : Paris Show – Chicago Show And to finish here is a video I took of the final song of the show which you may happen to have heard before…