It’s been 20 years and what a long strange trip… ah well, you know the refrain. Lolla started as farewell tour for Jane’s Addiction and a simultaneous travelling freak show.
Perry Farrell’s baby has evolved into a decidedly more profitable affair, after many twists, turns, formats and venue variations, not to mention numerous ups and downs.
The 2011 variety, once again in Chicago’s Grant Park, boasts 8 stages, 130 bands and 90,000 or so tickets sold for each of the 3 days of the event. The bigger names seem to be Foo Fighters, Coldplay, Eminem and some band called Muse.
If I had my way they would have just had the Foos open up for A Perfect Circle and be done with it, but that’s just me. I wouldn’t mind seeing My Morning Jacket again though. Those boys tend to put on a show.
I can’t help thinking that the whole thing is decidedly less 90′s rockin’ and a whole lot more 2011 poppin’ than my ear buds can tolerate. To wit: Bright Eyes.
Ok, that’s harsh, maybe I’m just annoyed because I’m watching Channel 2 right now (you can watch the whole deal on YouTube/Lollapalooza -which admittedly is very cool) and a band inappropriately named “Naked and Famous” is literally boring me to death… and I’m not the only one.
The crowd, which one would think would have to contain at least a handful of this audio disaster’s more devoted fans is acting like a herd of deaf and lifeless sheep with no shepherd.
It’s as if this audience is only there because they are so high they don’t know where the path to the other stage is. Partly they may be watching the train wreck for the same reason I am… trying to figure out who this band paid in order to get a gig.
Or maybe those sheep are just getting ready to sleep through Coldplay. The tragedy was complete when the trio launched into an ill-advised acoustic cover of a classic Styx tune. Oh man…
Not so much a reflection on Farrell or the festival in general, more so on the current crop of utterly disappointing Rock Stars organizers have to choose from. God let this be rock bottom.
Seriously though, if I was in Chicago this weekend I would absolutely make my way down to see the Foo Fighters, Delta Spirit, MMJ, Grace Potter, J. Roddey Walston (a phenom), the Black Lips, Death From Above 1979, Deftones (killers), Jr. Gong (another phenom), The Cars (out of curiosity), B.A.D., and what I’m sure would be the highlights for me, The Kills and A.P.C.
I fear I’d also be left searching for this generation’s Doors, Hendrix, Who, Stones, Zeppelin or Beatles to emerge and I’d be left completely disappointed… yet again. Hell, I’d settle for a Guns N’ Roses. At least you’d be sure that they are Rock N’ Roll.
This story is getting old. A lot of terrible bands mixed with some very solid bands, and perhaps one great band (A.P.C.) but not a legendary band to be found anywhere in sight. Not to mince words.
~ J. Wise / Guerrilla Radio - Guerrilla.Radio@Ymail.com