You may either love or hate Pitchfork’s skewed music reviews and god-like worship of Kanye West but you have to admit they put on a pretty good festival every year. This year’s lineup is another diverse collection of acts ranging from folk to rap and everything in between. We’ll be there this year and here’s part one of what we’re looking forward to.
Ryley Walker | 3:20PM at the Blue Stage
One minute Ryley Walker was playing solo acoustic sets around town and almost instantaneously his name started popping up all over high profile festival bills across the world. His solo guitar sets have been replaced by a lush full band experience that has earned him well deserved spots at festivals like Pygmalion in Urbana, IL, Levitation in Austin, TX, Nocturama in Spain, and of course Pitchfork. His latest release Primrose Green has the vibe and instrumentation of a Nick Drake album but with a bit more of a modern psych-folk presentation. His Friday afternoon performance is absolutely worth getting into the park early for. Check out the title track from Primrose Green below.
Tobias Jesso Jr. | 6:15PM at the Blue Stage
It makes sense that Tobias Jesso Jr. has been included in Pitchfork’s 2015 line-up. After receiving an 8.5 rating and a dedicated Pitchfork.tv documentary chronicling the release of his debut album, a set at the publication’s associated festival was the logical next step.
Tobias Jesso Jr.’s debut album, Goon, was released last March. It’s all kind of slow, soft, and emotional piano-work, and I’m interested to see how Jesso Jr. treats his music in a festival setting. Get to know Tobias Jesso Jr. in the Pitchfork.tv doc below, released just this past June.
Panda Bear | 6:25PM at the Green Stage
Panda Bear, the solo project of Noah Lennox, takes the stage early Friday evening. Panda Bear’s psychedelic-leaning electronic jams are perfectly suited for the dusk of the inaugural day of Pitchfork. It’s been four years since the release of 2011’s Tomboy, and though the most recent album channels some of Tomboy’s airiness and vocal harmonization, it’s definitely more on the experimental side of things. Get your dancing-in-a-large-crowd shoes on and wedge yourself in the thick of it. Panda Bear’s music will envelope your from any vantage point, and if you pay attention to the visuals as well, you’re going to have a heck of a time.
Iceage | 7:15PM at the Blue Stage
The last time Iceage made their way through Chicago their set was filled with entirely new material from their then upcoming album Plowing Into The Field Of Love. The album came out last October and the songs are just as impressive as they were when they were freshly blasted into my ears. The young post-punkers came out of Copenhagen in 2008 and even at the tender age of 17 their sound was mature, well-focused, and damn exciting. If you still can’t get enough of them after their Pitchfork performance they’ll be playing an after party at Beat Kitchen on Saturday night.
Wilco | 8:30PM at the Green Stage
They’ve been hometown heroes for years, but Wilco are way more than just a “Midwestern-thing” these days. Still, Chicagoans flock to their shows like no other city. Most fans will argue that their 30-40 song set lists and 3-5 night engagements trump any festival performance but with the headlining slot on Friday they’re sure to deliver. Their alt-folk roots have mutated into experimental sounds, layered compositions, and jagged art-rock numbers that keep fans on their toes. They’ve come a long way and certainly deserve a long awaited spot on this years Pitchfork lineup. After all, what other Chicago band could sell out a week’s worth of shows in the dead of winter?
Stay tuned throughout the week for more of our “Pitchfork Must-Sees” and be sure to keep up with us this weekend as we post photos and other goodies from the festival grounds!