Lollapalooza Day 1 Review: m83, Dr. Dog, The Shins, Yellow Ostrich, August 3rd, Chicago

Superlatives for day 1 of Lollapalooza:

Best hair of Lollapalooza Friday: Dev

Dev is fabulous – pure and simple. Girl came onstage wearing an adorable denim dress and rocking a ‘do that looked straight out of the 90’s: huge curly waves of bleach blonde hair coming straight sideways out of her head. Her superlative could also read: most gravity-defying hair of Lollapalooza Friday. I only caught half her set because I was stage hopping to The Shins, but she was full of energy and the crowd fed right off it (she also gave the crowd instructions, which I super enjoy when bands do, like “now put one hand in the hair” “now shake your booty”). I would’ve stayed for her entire set and ditched The Shins, but unfortunately the girl in front of me had quite a head of hair herself, and when she started whippin’ her massive ponytail in my face I decided to peace.

Most “meh” act of Lollapalooza Friday: M83

To be fair, before I hate on M83, the band came on at 7:30pm when things started getting crazy and the crowds were animal print pants out of control. Also to be fair, my love for this band is based solely on the first 20 seconds of Midnight City, so I probably shouldn’t have been surprised that the set was a bust for me. My problem with M83 is the same problem that I have with Gotye – the vocals aren’t powerful enough. Both bands have these amazing beats behind them, but once the vocalist opens his mouth it sounds like a shy kid mumbling through gauze. Pass.

Most adorable act of Lollapalooza Friday: Yellow Ostrich

Yellow Ostrich receives the honor for most adorable act of Lollapalooza Friday for a couple of reasons: 1) their lead singer, Alex Schaaf, looks like he’s 12 and is super cute, and 2) they interrupted their set so that one of their fans could get onstage and propose to his girlfriend. She said yes which was great, although as Schaaf mused afterwards, had she said no it might have become a viral video which would have been excellent press for the band. After hearing their set though, which included my favorites – stay at home, whale and marathon runner – I have full faith that this band is going to succeed on their own merit, viral vid or no.

Most chill act of Lollapalooza Friday: The Shins

I love The Shins. Their cover of We Will Become Silhouettes is always on repeat on my itunes during times of high stress (like when I had to choose between my Lolla conflicts this year. Chairlift or Neon Indian? Fun. or Tuneyards? Franz Ferdinand or Calvin Harris? #First world problems). They were one of the bigger names at Lolla though, and I was a little nervous about how they would come across when I was half a mile away from them, as opposed to being up close and personal. I should’ve realized that really isn’t a problem for The Shins – The Shins’ music isn’t made for crowding near the stage and rocking out, The Shins’ music is made for sitting down in a field, closing your eyes and absorbing.

Winner of Lollapalooza Friday: Dr. Dog

I have a very particular downfall when it comes to concerts in which I only know one song by a band, but I really enjoy that one song. Then, when the band comes to town, I go to their concert and they don’t play that one song, at which point I come to really dislike them. I fully expected this to be the case with Dr. Dog, as the only song I know by them is Get Away, and in fact they didn’t play that one during their set at Lolla. Nonetheless, Dr. Dog ended up ‘winning’ Lolla Friday for the following reasons:

1) I loved every single other song they played so much more than Get Away that I would’ve honestly been pissed had they wasted time on it.
2) Scott McMicken and Frank McElroy had the most enthusiastic and awesome dance moves of the night
3) They have great lyrics: “I put my clothes on like a bodyguard”, “I don’t wanna fight/but I’m constantly ready/and I don’t rock the boat/but it’s always unsteady.”
4) They had the best cover of the night –Architecture in Helsinki’s “heart it races” (although to give credit to AIH that’s some excellent starting material)
5) They win for best outfit – I love it when bands sport their own merch. Done and done.

Posted on by Celeste in Concerts

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