The third and final day of Pitchfork Music Festival marked the end to an overwhelmingly exhausting weekend. Sunday happened to be the first day that sold out when tickets first went on sale a few months ago so needless to say it was packed. The crowd was relatively lethargic as everyone was huddled in the shade trying to get away from the oppressive heat (whine, whine, whine, bitch, bitch, bitch… whatever it was hot). I’ll go easy on the first half of the artists for the day and blame the level of boring on the heat. Two early acts I was excited to see were How to Dress Well and OFWGKTA. Especially OFWGKTA, expecting them to bring this out of the world performance due to all the hype they’ve gotten in the last year, I was disappointed with their set but even that kind of grew into just not giving a shit. How to Dress Well didn’t fare much better and frankly they just didn’t sound good. Their drummer had about half a drum set with the floor toms and bass drum turned on their sides sitting flat on the stage, it sounded terrible. Watching them set up you could feel the anticipation in the crowd as they had an orchestral accompaniment to the band. Unfortunately they didn’t seem to do much with that either.
Luckily, Shabazz Palaces kicked off a streak of acts that fell on the opposite end of the spectrum. If you haven’t heard, Shabazz Palaces is a duo that consists of electronic beats with live drums over the top paired with live vocals. They sounded awesome and were worth waiting around to hear their entire set. They have an almost new world sound but they don’t seem as if they’re trying too hard, they sound utterly sincere. Baths followed Shabazz Palaces with a surprisingly energetic performance from an artist who was performing behind a table. His energy got the crowd moving and was the perfect precursor to Toro y Moi. Toro y Moi were by far one of the best sounding on Sunday. They mainly played songs off of Underneath the Pine, which is a personal favorite of mine. Although Chaz Bundick is reluctant to have Toro y Moi be labeled as chillwave, their chillwave….esque sound set the perfect ambiance for a hot Sunday afternoon.
As I shared some shade and some beers with a friend while waiting for Deerhunter I was able to people watch and ended up sitting two feet away from Andrea Estrella from Twin Sister (as they had played the Blue Stage earlier in the day). We lost track of time, enjoying not being baked by the sun, and ended up having to try and hurry our way through the gigantic crowd waiting for Deerhunter. It took us 13 minutes to make it from one side of the stage to the other, what?! To give you an idea, in a normal crowd that walk would take me three minutes tops, it was crazy. Deerhunter was worth the elbowing though, they played a great set while squinting into the sun. Cut Copy was the last act of the day on the Red Stage and although people have been h8n on their latest album Zonoscope, I thought they sounded great. Unfortunately it seemed like every press person at Pitchfork had jammed themselves into the photo pit so I was only able to see them if I turned myself horizontal and stood all the way up on my toes (looks like yoga’s been paying off). They played crowd favorites from In Ghost Colours which sound just as good as they did when the album came out all the way back in 2008.
TV on the Radio headlined the last day of Pitchfork and they didn’t disappoint. Unfortunately, I suck and my camera died as I was literally headed into the photo pit. I probably won’t stop kicking myself for that one for a while. I was so glad that they played songs off of Return to Cookie Mountain and Dear Science because those are my personal favorites. Nine Types of Light, which dropped in April of this year, has gotten so much attention (and it is good) but c’mon, Dear Science is ear meltingly awesome. Although they sounded fantastic, my feet could not have been more relieved when their set was finished because it meant that I could sleep forever (probably why you’re reading this review a week late…).
On a related note, check out the rest of the festival pics on ML’s Flickr! Click meeeeeee