Pitchfork 2010 Festival Preview

<p> <a href="features/features/pitchfork_2010_festival_preview/"><img src="http://www.qromag.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/07/pitchfork10preview.jpg" alt="Pitchfork 2010 Festival Preview" /></a> </p> <p> Has Pitchfork become ‘establishment’?<span>  </span>The online music magazine has been the biggest coverer of the indie music...
Pitchfork 2010 Festival Preview


FRIDAY, 7/16


Modest Mouse, 8:30 PM

Washington State’s Modest Mouse (QRO photos) broke through to mainstream success in 2004 with Good News For People Who Like Bad News, and followed that up by adding Smiths guitarist Johnny Marr for 2007’s We Were Dead Before the Ship Even Sank (QRO review) – unfortunately, Marr has since left to join the even younger Cribs (QRO live review).  But they’re still big enough to headline Day One (QRO photos headlining a festival).

Modest Mouse

Robyn, 6:25 PM

Robyn (Robin Miriam Carlsson) gained international fame with nineties dance-pop hits like "Show Me Love", but then retreated to her home base of Sweden until relatively recently.  Back-up vocals on Britney Spears’ "Piece of Me", opening for Madonna in Europe, and being featured on Röyksopp’s Junior (QRO review) all set the stage for her three-part Body Talk series, with Part 1‘s "Dancing On My Own" made the top ten in the U.S. this year.


El-P, 4:35 PM

Brooklyn’s Jaime Meline, a.k.a. El-P, has been an important factor in the alternative hip-hop scene, bringing together the two otherwise divergent scenes.  So he’s a perfect fit for the rather hip-hop-heavy Pitchfork.


Sharon Van Etten, 3:30 PM

While there’s a ton of stripped songstresses out there, one of the nicer ones is Sharon Van Etten (QRO photos at a festival), who evoked the sad strains of Appalachia on her debut last year, Because I Was In Love (QRO review).  In October she’ll drop her follow-up, Epic, so look for new songs getting live try-outs.

Sharon Van Etten



Eugene Mirman, 8:00 PM

The alt-comedy world of today gets a whole stage on Day One of Pitchfork, headlined by the man who maybe did more than anyone else to found it, stand-up artist Eugene Mirman (QRO photos) – who’s no stranger to sharing a stage with musicians, such as recently opening for She & Him (QRO live review) and previously for the first performance by Julian Plenti (QRO live review of that show), a.k.a. Paul Banks of Interpol (QRO album review).

Eugene Mirman

Michael Showalter, 7:15 PM

Coming along with Eugene Mirman from Brooklyn is Michael Showalter.  While he’s been hilarious on screen, such as in last year’s Michael & Michael Have Issues (with longtime collaborator Michael Ian Black), his stand-up routine, unfortunately, needs work.

Michael Showalter

Wyatt Cenac, 6:30 PM

You can’t have a comedy stage at a music festival without at least one correspondent from The Daily Show, and filling that role at Pitchfork Day One is Wyatt Cenac – but he’s already friends with indie-rockers (QRO photo of Cenac with The National after a show).


Hannibal Buress, 5:45 PM

Wyatt Cenac



Broken Social Scene, 7:20 PM

Since being part of the indie-rock ‘Canadian Invasion’ of 2003/2004, Toronto’s own Broken Social Scene (QRO photos) have also become one of the most sought-after festival bands in the alternative music arena, whether indoors at industry showcases (QRO photos at a festival) or outdoors at more traditional fests (QRO photos outdoors at a festival), to the point where they’re headlining (QRO photos headlining a festival).  Fronted by singer/guitarists Kevin Drew and Brendan Canning (QRO interview), this giant collective includes The Apostle of Hustle, Andrew Whiteman (QRO interview), Do Make Say Think’s Charles Spearin (QRO interview), and a rotating female vocalist spot that’s included Metric’s Emily Haines (QRO live review), Leslie Feist (QRO live review), and Land of Talk’s Elizabeth Powell (QRO interview). While the previous releases were ‘BSS Presents:’ albums focused on Drew (Spirit If…QRO review) and Canning (Something For All of Us…QRO review), this year’s Forgiveness Rock Record (QRO review) is a return to the Broken Social Scene (QRO photos outdoors at a festival), and their live show (QRO live review) has included everything from Spearin’s fascinating Happiness Project (QRO review) to the old ‘hits’ like "K.C. Accidental" (QRO video) and "Fire Eyed Boy" (QRO video) – as well as numerous guest stars (QRO photos outdoors at a festival).



Broken Social Scene
Broken Social Scene


Liars, 5:30 PM

Though 2001’s They Threw Us All In a Trench and Stuck a Monument On Top got Liars (QRO photos outdoors) labeled ‘dance-punk’, they’ve since shifted radically, losing old fans, but gaining new ones (QRO photos at a festival), especially with this year’s Sisterworld (QRO review).


The Tallest Man on Earth, 4:00 PM

There are a lot of alt-folk solo singer/songwriters out there these days. Sweden’s Kristian Matsson, a.k.a. The Tallest Man On Earth (QRO photos at a festival), first got notice for his Dylan-esque ways when opening for fellow alt-folk solo singer/songwriter Justin Vernon, a.k.a. Bon Iver (QRO album review).

The Tallest Man On Earth




LCD Soundsystem, 8:30 PM

There was a time when ‘dance-rock’ was synonymous with LCD Soundsystem (QRO live review).  Singer/frontman Daniel Murphy was the first to play Daft Punk to the rock kids (immortalized in both "Losing My Edge" and "Daft Punk Is Playing At My House" – QRO video), but after 2007’s Sound of Silver (QRO review), he took time off from LCD and touring (QRO live review in 2007) to focus on his label DFA, which has become as influential – if not more so.  But LCD is back (QRO live review of return show) with This Is Happening (QRO review) and songs such as "Drunk Girls" and "I Can Change" (QRO video).


LCD Soundsystem


Wolf Parade, 6:15 PM

Sometimes overlooked in the ‘Canadian Invasion’, Montreal’s Wolf Parade (QRO live review) delivered a strong debut in 2005 with Apologies To Queen Mary, and kept that up with 2008’s At Mount Zoomer (QRO review).  One reason the attention hasn’t been as high is because it’s been diffused into not only the Parade, but also the acclaimed side-projects of singer/keyboardist Spencer Krug (Sunset Rubdown – QRO live review) and singer/guitarist Dan Boeckner (Handsome Furs – QRO album review).  But they’re back to the Wolf this year with Expo 86 (QRO review).

Wolf Parade

Raekwon, 4:15 PM

A member of the ultra-acclaimed Wu-Tang Clan, Raekwon put out his solo debut, Only Built 4 Cuban Linx… in 1995 and reached the Top Ten – only to match that feat last year with sequel Only Built 4 Cuban Linx… Pt. II.  And this year he looks set to drop Shaolin vs. Wu-Tang – and you know they ain’t nothing to fuck with…


Delorean, 2:30 PM

Iceland may have long been the oddest place for a pop star to come out of, but challenging that is the Spanish Basque country (better known for its incomprehensible language, bullfighting & ETA guerillas) in Delorean.  While they toiled in obscurity for a while, an appearance at SXSW 2007 (QRO recap) saw the synth-pop outfit finally get some attention, with worldwide release Subiza.


Free Energy, 1:00 PM

The seventies-rock inspired (and looking – QRO photos) Free Energy (QRO photos at a festival) somehow found themselves on electro-dance label DFA (LCD Soundsystem, The Juan MacLean, YACHT) for debut Stuck On Nothing (QRO review), which has only earned them more attention (QRO photos at a festival) as they try to bring back the cowbell.

Free Energy



Freddie Gibbs, 7:40 PM

Originally from Gary, Indiana (hey, that’s the same hometown as the Jackson clan…), Freddie Gibbs has been compared to none other than Tupac Shakur (but was Tupac that great, or just his posthumous cult of memory?…).

Freddie Gibbs

Bear in Heaven, 6:45 PM

Brooklyn band Bear In Heaven (QRO photos) first got notice in 2007 with Red Bloom of the Boom (QRO review), and kept it going with last year’s Beast Rest Forth Mouth (QRO review), which has garnered massive praise as the band has moved up the rungs of the tour (QRO live review outdoors) and festival hierarchy (QRO photos at a festival).

Bear In Heaven

WHY?, 5:45 PM

Jonathan ‘Yoni’ Wolf and his band, WHY? (QRO live review), combine indie, hip-hop, rock, pop, folk & more (QRO photos), most recently with last year’s (somewhat underwhelming) Eskimo Snow (QRO review).


The Smith Westerns, 4:45 PM

Locals Smith Westerns (QRO photos outdoors) have been getting some definite attention, but is that for their rock, or, like Girls (with whom they’re touring – see below), is it for their persona – none old enough to drink yet, and notorious for getting kicked out of clubs for breaking that rule…

The Smith Westerns

Dâm-Funk, 3:45 PM

Pasadena funk singer/DJ Dam-Funk is coming off throwing down five full-lengths worth of new material last year, edited and compiled into double-disc Toeachizown.


Kurt Vile, 2:50 PM

The lead guitarist in Philadelphia’s The War On Drugs (QRO photos), Kurt Vile has been busting out on his own (though sometimes with back band The Violators) with a more psychedelic sound.


Sonny & The Sunsets, 1:55 PM

Kurt Vile

Netherfriends, 1:00 PM

Netherfriends (QRO photos at a festival) return to their hometown of Chicago, after crisscrossing the country in their ’50 Songs, 50 States’ project, writing & recording a song in each.




Panda Bear, 7:25 PM

One of the founding members of Baltimore’s ultra-relevant experimental electronic outfit Animal Collective (QRO album review), Noah Lennox – a.k.a. Panda Bear (QRO photos at a festival) – broke out of the zoo and is now on his own. His anticipated Tomboy, the follow-up to 2007’s Person Pitch (QRO review), comes out in September, so look for new material as well as old.

Panda Bear

The Jon Spencer Blues Explosion, 5:15 PM

Today’s garage-rock and party-rock revivals wouldn’t be possible without The Jon Spencer Blues Explosion.  Spencer’s also featured in other more-notorious-and-influential-than-successful acts such as Heavy Trash, Boss Hog & Pussy Galore, but he returns to explosion, celebrating twenty years with their first-ever compilation, Dirty Shit Rock and Roll: The First Ten Years.

The Jon Spencer Blues Explosion

Titus Andronicus, 3:20 PM

Straight outta Jersey comes Garden State pridesters Titus Andronicus (QRO photos at a festival), who have been hitting all fifty hard (QRO photos out-of-state) even before (QRO photos) the release of their Civil War-inspired The Monitor (QRO review), and now bring it outdoors (QRO photos outdoors).

Titus Andronicus

Real Estate, 1:45 PM

Pitchfork loved Ridgewood, New Jersey’s Real Estate’s (QRO photos at a festival) self-titled debut, so see for yourself if they were right.

Real Estate


SUNDAY, 7/18


Pavement, 8:30 PM

It’s the reunion we’ve all been waiting for. Ever since the Pixies (QRO live review) kicked off the eighties/nineties alt-rock reunion trend in 2004 at Coachella (well, really first was Mission of Burma – QRO live review), they’ve been coming at a pretty good clip (see: Dinosaur Jr. – QRO live review), but one everyone had been hoping for was Pavement. The acclaimed indie-rock act split up ten years ago, with singer/guitarist Stephen Malkmus going his own way alongside his Jicks (QRO live review). Deluxe edition re-releases of prior records like Brighten the Corners (QRO re-release review) and Wowee Zowee(QRO re-release review) did keep the flame burning, but the rumored reunion seemed like just that – a rumor.

Until September 2009, when the news finally broke that the reunion was real.  It started with the announcement of four shows at Central Park SummerStage (QRO venue review) for September of 2010 (QRO concert listings) – which sold out immediately (a fifth was recently added/sold-out – QRO concert listing – at Williamsburg Waterfront – QRO venue review).  Since then, they’ve made it a full-fledged reunion tour, starting earlier this year in New Zealand, and are hitting up festivals all over the world (QRO photos at a foreign festival).

What brought about the reunion?  The anniversary?  The money?  Greatest hits record, Quarantine the Past (QRO review)?  Singer/guitarist/Malkmus rival Scott Kannenberg coming back solo, using Pavement-era moniker Spiral Stairs on The Real Feel (QRO review)?  Jick Janet Weiss reforming her old band, including new member/Jick Joanna Bolme, Quasi (QRO spotlight on), leaving Malkmus free?  Malkmus no longer being the coolest ex-member of Pavement, since bassist Mark Ibold joined Sonic Youth (QRO live review) full-time on The Eternal (QRO review))?  Or did everyone just get tired of them asking about a reunion?

Whatever the reason, the dream has become reality.





Major Lazer, 6:15 PM

The collaboration between DJ/producers Diplo and Switch made a serious breakthrough last year as Major Lazer, with Guns Don’t Kill People… Lazers Do, and just recently followed it up with tour EP Lazers Never Die.

Major Lazer

Lightning Bolt, 4:15 PM

Before there was the plethora of wild guitar-and-drums duos that there are today, there was Lightning Bolt – a bass-and-drums duo known for guerilla-style shows who put out their fifth noise-rock LP, Earthly Delights, last year.

Lightning Bolt

Girls, 2:30 PM

The band with maybe the least creative titling ever (their debut is ‘Album’ – QRO review – at least there’s no actual females in the band…) got notice largely because singer/frontman Christopher Owens was raised in the actually scarily crazy Children of God cult.  But the neo-pop sounds of Girls (QRO photos) have kept on finding fans.


Allá, 1:00 PM




Sleigh Bells, 7:40 PM

Somewhere between noise and pop lies Brooklyn’s Sleigh Bells (QRO photos).  The duo of Derek E. Miller & Alexis Krauss all of a sudden became the hottest thing out there with debut Treats, including touring with M.I.A. (QRO photos) – but are they, like M.I.A., all hype?…

Sleigh Bells

Neon Indian, 6:45 PM 

Alan Palomo works solo as VEGA (QRO photos at a festival) and recruits a live band as Neon Indian (QRO photos at the same festival), where he’s far stronger (QRO photos with his band).

Neon Indian

Here We Go Magic, 5:45 PM

After releasing two albums under his own name, folk musician Luke Temple branched out into full outfit Here We Go Magic last year, with their self-titled debut, and they are hitting up a ton of festivals this year (QRO coverage at a festival).

Here We Go Magic

Surfer Blood, 4:45 PM

Shooting up very quickly in indie-circles has been West Palm Beach’s Surfer Blood (QRO photos at a festival), who were gaining tons of fans (QRO photos of a packed house) long before acclaimed debut Astro Coast (QRO review) finally hit the shelves (or whatever you say in today’s digital age…).  Are they the first wave of a new ‘South Florida Invasion’ (QRO photos at home)?  But hopefully no covers of Lit’s "My Own Worst Enemy" (QRO photos)…

Surfer Blood

Local Natives, 3:45 PM

Silver Lake’s Local Natives (QRO photos at a festival) have been riding the alt-country/folk wave, but seem to be doing it better than most (QRO photos), charting in February with debut Gorilla Manor, moving up to headliner tours (QRO live review), and well-received on the festival circuit (QRO photos at a festival).

Local Natives

2:50 PM, Stage B – Washed Out

Slowly percolating up has been the new ‘chillwave’ movement, whose sound is about as defined as that term, but one of those artists is Ernest Greene, whose recently moved his work out of the bedroom (where he recorded Life of Leisure EPQRO album review) and onto the live stage.


1:55 PM, Stage B – Best Coast


1:00 PM, Stage B – Cave

Washed Out



Big Boi, 7:25 PM

Still probably best known for being one-half of massively successful duo OutKast, Big Boi first showed off his solo skills in the Speakerboxx half of OutKast’s 2003’s double-LP, Speakerboxx/The Love Below (the latter half being partner Andre 3000’s own solo debut).  But the hip-hop artist is out with his own, fully-solo Sir Luscious Left Foot: The Son of Chico Dusty right before Pitchfork.

Big Boi

St. Vincent, 5:15 PM

After the one-and-only Annie Clark (QRO interview) made 2007 her break-out year, both as part of The Polyphonic Spree on The Fragile Army (QRO review) and with her own debut as St. Vincent (QRO photos), Marry Me (QRO review), she followed that up with even-better years, gracing festivals (QRO photos at a festival), charming and surprising crowds with winning humor live (QRO live review), and bringing a stable of new songs (QRO live review).  Those new songs, like "Laughing With a Mouth of Blood" (QRO video) and "Actor Our of Work" (QRO video) formed into last year’s Actor (QRO review), which vaunted her into the even bigger time (QRO photos at a festival), including playing Lincoln Center (QRO live review) and other storied concert halls (QRO photos at a festival).

St. Vincent

Beach House, 3:20 PM

The guitar-and-keys pair of Victoria Legrand and Alex Scally may hail from Baltimore, but there’s a Francophile expanse to Beach House (QRO photos).  2008’s Devotion (QRO review) earned them many fans that felt that way, and this year’s Teen Dream (QRO review) is already being shortlisted for ‘albums of the year’, and they’re working the festivals (QRO photos at a festival).  But will the sweet sounds work as well in the bright sunlight (QRO photos outdoors)?

Beach House

Cass McCombs, 1:45 PM

Alt-musician Cass McCombs (QRO photos outdoors) defies easy categorization.

Cass McCombs


Toyota Antics Pre-Party 


Pre-Party – Thursday, July 15th at Bottom Lounge (1375 W Lake St.)

Toyota Antics are hosting a bunch of pre-parties at festivals across the country, including at Pitchfork.  So head to Bottom Lounge to pick up your will call tickets a day early (the same day/time as their pre-party for Brooklyn’s Siren Music Festival – QRO preview) & groove to Pitchfork performers like Neon Indian & Dâm-Funk (see above).

RSVP for the pre-party here: http://www.uptheantics.com/pitchfork



For festival website, go here: http://www.pitchforkmusicfestival.com/



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