Posted August 4, 2013 by whopperjaw in Tunes

Lollapalooza 2013 Day 2: Some mellower moments

The National
The National

Day 2 of Lollapalooza 2013 was a decidedly mellow affair. It’s suggestive that our favorite performance was by Court Hound Dogs. The group, which features former Dixie Chicks Martie Maguire and Emily Robison, played to a small crowd during the middle of the afternoon but its set was a real highlight. They opened with the catchy, Sheryl Crow-like “Rock All Night,” a song that nicely crossed over from country into pop. Thanks to the fabulous playing of their touring guitarist who fired off vigorous bluesy licks throughout the set, the group delivered a stellar performance, even without the vocal stylings of their former Dixie Chick pal Natalie Maines.

While Robison had trouble getting her banjo plugged in during “It didn’t Make Sound” (ironically enough, it didn’t make a sound), she quickly got the technical stuff sorted out. The stellar band effortlessly moved from traditional country (“You guys love the bluegrass,” Robison said at one point) to pop and rock tunes. They weren’t the only country act on Saturday’s bill, either. Outlaw country singer Eric Church rolled into town with a semi-truck full of gear (the thing was parked near the media area) and his set concluded with an arena-rock bang as smoke filled the stage while he played his final tune.

Other mellow moments: The Los Angeles-based Local Natives put an emphasis on vocal melodies and sounded sharp during a mid-afternoon set; Brit singer-songwriter Ben Howard played a solid set of mid-tempo tunes that showed off his terrific voice; the National meticulously delivered somber songs such as “I Should Live in Salt” and occasionally added live horns to the mix; Blondfire singer Erica Driscoll evoked Stevie Nicks and even delivered a spot-on cover of the Fleetwood Mac classic “Dreams.”

While Mumford & Sons played on one end of the park, the recently reunited The Postal Service played to a large crowd on the other end of the field. Front man Ben Gibbard joked that the band was “from nowhere” as the band capably delivered its electronica-laced indie rock. While he and singer Jenny Lewis didn’t have the greatest on-stage chemistry, they harmonized well on tunes such as “We Will Become Silhouettes” and “Turn Around.”

Of course, the day wasn’t all-mellow all the time. Heartless Bastards rocked their stage (a set we sadly had to miss do to timing) and, backed by a live band, Kendrick Lamar brought the noise during his hour-long set. Too bad he had to spend so much time spouting clichés like “put your hands in the air.” And while lines like “pussy and Patrón will make you feel alright” might show off his ability to use alliteration, they don’t suggest anything deep and meaningful.

And finally, if you’re wondering where the party was: Detroit-based glitch-hop/dubstep producer GRiZ put on a terrific mid-afternoon performance in Perry’s Tent where he dropped in samples of George Clinton and Snoop Dogg. He even played some saxophone during his terrific, crowd-pleasing hour-long set.

Below are a few representative photos from the first two days of the fest. To see all 170+ pics we’ve taken so far, click here.

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