Photo courtesy of Cambria Harkey / Lollapalooza 2017
The second day of Lollapalooza 2017 brought a wide variety of artists to the numerous stages strewn across Grant Park. From mega-alternative acts like Blink-182 and The Killers to hip-hop acts, such as Brooklyn-based SAINt JHN, “Classic Man” artist Jidenna and Run the Jewels, day two accommodated just about every type of fan.
The day began with an unexpected chill as clouds rolled over Chicago, but by the end of the day not one cloud remained in the sky as the top headliners took the stage. The deep lineup combined with excellent weather led most attendees to forget about the unfortunate cancellations and mishaps on Thursday.
Even The Killers understood how disappointed fans were Thursday at missing the majority of Muse’s set, and frontman Brandon Flowers performed a cover of “Starlight” from Muse’s album “Black Holes and Revelations.” Over at the Perry’s stage, DJ Snake performed in front of a packed crowd moments after a surprise pop-up performance by Chicago’s own, rapper Vic Mensa.
Here is a recap of a few performances from Friday:
San Holo’s guitar performance only spectacle of otherwise dull set
Dutch DJ, musician and producer San Holo (Sander van Dijck) performed Friday afternoon to an already hyped-up Perry’s crowd, immediately kicking off the set with a rendition of his hit song “Light.” Within minutes, mosh pits had formed and San Holo brought out an electric guitar, a pleasant addition to the otherwise standard EDM set.
Regardless of San Holo’s fun stage presence, his constant reliance on epic buildups and drops repeated ad nauseum led to a certain dullness as he played familiar San Holo songs such as the 2015’s “We Rise” and single “Can’t Forget You (feat. The Nicholas).”
His remix of Kanye West’s “All of the Lights” was slightly lackluster, and by the end of the set, attendees had received just that: a slightly lackluster performance from an otherwise impressive artist.
SAINt JHN feels at home in the intimate Toyota Music Den
While he has only released four singles under his stage name SAINt JHN, the Brooklyn rapper whose birth name is Carlos Saint John, brought a hard-to-match energy before a few dozen fans Friday in the Toyota Music Den.
“I like this,” SAINt JHN said in the intimate setting of the enclosed tent. “It’s like I’m in my living room.”
With a passionate fervor, SAINt JHN walked onstage before the small crowd, immediately encouraging everyone to loosen up. In order to do this, he made the bold decision to climb atop the Toyota Corolla sitting in the tent, where he performed a few verses before hopping into the middle of the crowd.
“Can we get this show going,” he said, before leaping back onstage and performing songs “3 Below” and “Reflex.”
Even radio reporter Sway Calloway from “The Wake Up Show” made an appearance at the Den, posing in front of a Toyota with a bright smile on his face.
SAINt JHN’s happy performance made even the stiffest attendees start dancing, and by the end of the show, the emerging rapper had said a prayer over the crowd and possibly angered the Toyota staff. Hopefully he didn’t leave too many dents in the Corolla’s hood.
Mura Masa among the day’s most energy-filled performances
A long way from his hometown of Guernsey, an island off the coast of Normandy, 21-year-old Alex Crosson, known by his stage name of Mura Masa, brought a nonstop dance party to the Pepsi stage on Friday, performing songs off his self-titled July 14 debut album “Mura Masa.”
“I drove fourteen hours over night just to be here,” Crosson said.
Crosson was accompanied by promising singer Fliss. She filled in vocals for numerous songs that featured other artists, such as Charli XCX’s part in “One Night.”
Fliss’ vocal capacity shone true during the set. The crowd fell into groove more and more as the set approached its end, and some fans climbed trees nearby to witness the show. As Crosson simultaneously DJ’d and played on a live drum set, Fliss led the crowd in an energy-filled performance of “What if I Go.”
The set ended with the familiar, upbeat song “Firefly (feat. NAO)” that left the whole crowd happy to witness a DJ whose future only seems to be getting brighter.
Run the Jewels brings a fan on stage to rap, he kills it
The hip-hop duo Run the Jewels, no newcomers to Lollapalooza, showed up at the Grant Park stage Friday evening as sub-headliners to The Killers, but their performance alone could have landed a spot as a top headliner.
Run the Jewels, comprised of rappers Killer Mike (Michael Render) and El-P (Jaime Meline) need little to deliver a solid performance. Give them a stage, speakers, a buzzing crowd and their tour DJ, Trackstar the DJ, and they will issue a steady stream of lyrics touching on subjects that include political corruption, police brutality and a perpetual state of decay in the modern day.
Killer Mike, whose political activism led to his interview with Bernie Sanders, immediately let the crowd know what to expect during the set.
“We’re Run the Jewels, and we’re gonna burn this stage to the motherf—–g ground,” he said.
Killer Mike donned a Chicago Cubs hat; RTJ threw the first pitch earlier that day at the home baseball game at Wrigley Field.
“We are humbled that you came and watched us today,” EL-P said.
The duo’s humility truly shone when they called a fan in RTJ attire who was holding a sign to the stage to rap “Legend Has It” from the group’s latest album, “Run the Jewels 3.” The fan, who told the crowd his name was Jacob, hit every word verbatim, even when Killer Mike picked him up and twirled him around in the air.
Though the duo brings a stage presence unmatched by most hip-hop artists, they took a moment to dedicate the song “Down” to the late Chester Bennington, the former frontman of American rock band Linkin Park who committed suicide on July 20.
“If you stick around, that s–t will change,” EL-P said. “But we need you to stick around.”
The Killers cover Muse, Smashing Pumpkins, make memories with “Mr. Brightside”
Fans were relieved to see the clear skies above the Grant Park stage Friday night as American rock band The Killers took the stage. The previous day had been cut short right in the middle of American rock band Muse’s set due to storms.
So when frontman Brandon Flowers, donning a sparkling leather jacket, said, “We’ll try to make (missing Muse) up to you the best we can,” attendees cheered.
Flowers opened up the band’s set with “The Man” from their 2012 album “Battle Born” before diving into “Somebody Told Me” from their 2004 album “Hot Fuss.”
Flowers rarely stayed in one place, opting to bounce around with the band members, displaying his infamous onstage presence. In a humbling act of respect for Muse, the band covered the song “Starlight” from Muse’s album “Black Holes and Revelations.”
That’s no easy feat to accomplish. Muse’s frontman Matt Bellamy touts impressive vocals, and “Starlight” exploits those to their full extent. Nonetheless, Flowers held his own as his voice boomed from the stage.
Flowers delivered a short and sweet rendition of The Smashing Pumpkins’ song “Disarm” (of which its most infamous lyric reads, “The killer in me is the killer in you”).
The Killers also played their song “Run for Cover,” one from their upcoming album “Wonderful, Wonderful.”
The only moment that could top the dazzling night was the long-awaited performance of “Mr. Brightside” from “Hot Fuss.” Flowers’ voice could hardly be heard above the roar of fans screaming the lyrics. It was a refreshing jolt of energy to make up for the disappointing problems from the previous night.
To contact Lifestyles Editor Tayhlor Stephenson, email firstname.lastname@example.org.
For more updates, follow us at www.mtsusidelines.com, on Facebook at MTSU Sidelines and on Twitter/Instagram at @Sidelines_Life.