Well hello Lollapalooza lineup. I didn’t expect you this morning. In case you missed it, Lollapalooza announced their 2015 lineup for the festival to take place in Grant Park in Chicago, IL on July 31st through August 2nd.
Headliners include Metallica, a resurgent Paul McCartney, Florence and the Machine, and this years big Grammy winner Sam Smith. That’s all fine and good, they’ll be great. Florence has a new album coming out that should be spectacular and that will definitely be a must see. But let’s talk about who I’m most excited to see.
(This is going to be a top 11 list because I couldn’t figure out who to leave out, deal with it.)
Before I get to who I’m excited to see, I’m going to get the four artists I’ve already seen out of the way here. Those being Cold War Kids (I’ve seen them three times now and they have been equally amazing every time), MisterWives (who would easily be number 1 on this list if I hadn’t already seen them, nonetheless I can’t wait to see them again), BØRNS (opened for MisterWives, also fantastic), and Kid Cudi (don’t get me started on that shit show…). I’m excited to see those first three again, particularly MisterWives (Mandy Lee stole my heart), but there are too many good bands in this lineup to include them in my list. Kid Cudi…. look… I know you’re from Cleveland and all, and I appreciate that you rep our beautiful city, I even used to be a huge fan of yours, introduced a lot of my friends to your music. But I haven’t forgotten Columbus 2010….. PASS.
Alright now to my Top ELEVEN performances I can’t wait to see at Lollapalooza 2015!
- COIN is a band I discovered earlier this year as they just released their debut 3 song EP in February. The first time I heard the song “Run” I knew I was listening to something special. Perhaps I shouldn’t read too much into 3 songs but it’s served me well in the past and I’m definitely looking forward to what this band can bring in the future. They’ve recently finished recording their debut album in Nashville and it should release before Lolla.
10. Lord Huron
- Lord Huron’s debut album Lonesome Dreams came out in 2012, so he’s been around for some time at this point. However it wasn’t until his most recent single, “Fool for Love”, that I started really paying attention. The depth of his music coupled with his unique voice lead me to think he will put on a great live show. Lord Huron also has a new album coming out in two weeks on April 7th.
- New Zealand’s BROODS is a duo that I am very high on. In 2014 they released a 6 track EP that debuted at number 2 in New Zealand, only behind some girl named Lorde, you may have heard of her. If Lorde had not overshadowed them Broods would certainly be the biggest thing coming out of New Zealand right now. Their debut album Evergreen came out later in 2014 and is certainly worth a listen.
- By now you’ve likely heard Sheppard’s song “Geronimo” as it’s played on the radio pretty often. This group is much much more than just that song though, their whole album is fantastic, top to bottom. Made up of three siblings, that do most of the vocal heavy lifting, and two of their best friends, this band has a lot of chemistry and it really shows through in their music. They are all about the vocals and they are ridiculously good at what they do.
7. Walk The Moon
- Cincinnati’s own Walk The Moon has really exploded over the past year. They released a new album Talking is Hard in November and went out on tour, selling out just about every single show they did. I had Talking is Hard at number 7 on my Top 10 Albums of the Year so I suppose it’s fitting that’s where I put them on this list as well. This band just makes me want to dance, there are very few bands that make me want to do that… Just shut up and dance Kunal.
6. Toro y Moi
- Cameron Mitchell, you probably won’t read this, but this is a shout-out to you. You got me into Toro y Moi, and your constant ravings about him has gotten me incredibly excited to see him. By the way you should come to Lolla.
- Okay so I know I didn’t give their newest album This is All Yours the best review… An Awesome Wave was so damn good though that they remain one of my favorite bands. The things this band does with sound is pure science. This is going to be a must see for sure.
4. The Tallest Man On Earth
- The Tallest Man On Earth is releasing a new album in May and I can not contain my excitement for it. “The Gardner”, “King of Spain”, “Where Do My Bluebird Fly”, “I Won’t Be Found”, the list goes on, I haven’t heard a song I haven’t liked.
3. Of Monsters and Men
- In case you haven’t heard, they’re back! It feels like an eternity since My Head Is An Animal came out, but at long last they are going on tour and will be releasing a new album on June 9th. I plan on seeing them when they play in Chicago in May so I suppose by the time Lolla rolls around I could put them above in my list of bands I’ve already seen, but I have waited too damn long for new music from them, and to see them live. There is nothing in this world that will keep me from seeing this band.
2. James Bay
- In case you haven’t talked to me in the past few months, you should know that James Bay is my current favorite artist. He released his new album this week Chaos and the Calm which I wrote about yesterday so I’ll keep this one short. When I first saw his name on the lineup my first thought was that I’m most excited to see him. There is only one man that could possibly unseat him, and what do you know, he’ll be there too… but I’ll get to that… James Bay is ridiculous, and amazing, and super talented, and okay I’ll stop gushing. Go listen to his new album. I should add I’m also seeing him in May in Chicago but that doesn’t matter, I will see this man play every time he is anywhere near me.
1. Gary Clark Jr.
- I would be shocked, SHOCKED, if we are friends and I haven’t already raved to you about Gary Clark Jr. I could talk for days about how much I love his music but I’ll try to spare you all that. I have referred to him in the past as a mix between Hendrix and Auerbach, and while I do think that’s fairly close, I also think it’s incredibly unfair. There is only one Gary Clark Jr. and there will only ever be one. This dude won a Grammy for “Please Come Home” and knocked his performance out of the park and yet people somehow still don’t know who he is. The man hasn’t been around that long but he is a freaking legend. He’s Hendrix with a better voice, Auerbach with better guitar, and Kravitz minus the douche. Gary Clark Jr. is everything. If I saw nobody else but him at this festival I would be happy. Can you tell I’m freaking out a little bit? Nah not at all…
Honorable Mentions (in no particular order): MS MR, The Weeknd, Florence and the Machine, Tyler The Creator, Chet Faker, Angus & Julia Stone, Night Terrors of 1927, Pell.
So there you have it, my top 11 performances I’m excited for at Lollapalooza 2015. Let me know what you think, if you agree or disagree, who you’re excited for, whatever is on your mind. I’ve also put together a small playlist of songs from the bands I mentioned above which you can find below.