Universal - Volbeat's Michael Poulsen discusses the impact guitarist/producer Rob…
- Posted on Aug 6th 2012 1:15PM by Mike Mehalick
Theo Wargo, Getty Images
Sunday began with indie rockers Oberhofer taking full advantage of their main-stage opportunity, while the Gayngs affiliate and Justin Vernon-approved Polica rattled more than a few heads with their bass and double-drum reverberations. After the Devil Makes Three and Trampled By Turtles served up some of the finest displays of varied string playing one is likely to see, the six-piece Brooklyn-by-way-of-Missouri group White Rabbits brought their notorious energy to a performance that saw multiple instrument tradeoffs between members.
Those with the endurance to undertake a bowlegged walk back over to the south side of the Lollapalooza grounds were rewarded with pitch-perfect sets by the Walkmen and Little Dragon. Their respective singers, Hamilton Leithauser and Yukimi Nagano, delivered stirring, if not literally moving, vocals -- each in their own unique way. Oppressive rays of sun beat down over Dum Dum Girls' no-frills rock attack as crowds took advantage of the shade-generating trees of the Google Play Stage.
Slowly but surely, the opening build of Icelandic ethereal magic makers Sigur Ros boiled over and exploded with euphoric and life-affirming waves of sound. Bandleader Jonsi cooed and crooned, backed by a mini-orchestra and a full set of back-up singers. The singer repeatedly communicated with the crowd in his native tongue, and while no one knew what he was saying, it really didn't matter. For a brief moment on Sunday, everyone in attendance spoke the same joyous and hopeful universal language.
A musical smorgasbord accompanied the suppertime hour, as Toro y Moi welcomed the Sigur Ros exodus with blasts of retro dance grooves. Meanwhile New Jersey heroes the Gaslight Anthem brought their signature Americana nostalgia rock to throngs of fans spilling out into the streets and, in the case of some bold folks, up into the trees. Elsewhere, thanks to with their infectious guitar-centric world-music rhythms, the irresistible husband-and-wife duo Amadou & Mariam earned more than a few curious looks from those lining up for Florence and the Machine.
Alt-rock radio benefactors Of Monsters & Men displayed their possible staying power and, of course, delighted everyone who came for -- and left immediately after -- "Little Talks." They were no match for the enormous audience that Florence Welch and her Machine drew on the absolutely packed Bud Light Stage lawn. In terms of crowd size, it was rivaled only by the massive turnout the Red Hot Chili Peppers got on Saturday.
"Yes! More snogging, more making out," implored Welch, who radiated power and elegance in her constantly sashaying black frock.
The love-fest was made all the better by Welch's unstoppable voice, which sent hits like "What the Water Gave Me" and "Shake It Out" emanating throughout Grant Park.
If one side was beauty, the other was the beast as the influential and rarely sighted At the Drive-In rocked an absolutely frenzied group of mud-soaked moshers. The El Paso post-hardcore collective made the most of their time back together, churning out a set heavy on hits and fan favorites. The always-mercurial Cedric Bixler-Zavala, who also fronts the Mars Volta, jumped off drum stanchions and rambled in between songs, leading many to utter, "What do you think he's on?"
The non-headliner portion of the schedule wound down with Swedish dance-pop craftsmen Miike Snow closing out the Sony Stage. A spaceship-style set piece served as the visual focal point as the group, which is usually draped in darkness and fog, was forced to gesticulate a little bit more than usual in order to sell the gathered masses on new songs like "The Wave" alongside old standards such as "Burial."
As the sun set on the final day of Lollapalooza 2012 and fans made their way to their possible selections of Jack White, Kaskade, Childish Gambino and Justice, one was left to admire every decision made on the part of festival organizers, both in terms of setting up the weekend and executing the oft-dreaded contingency plan. It turns out that the heroes on stage this past weekend were just as important as the ones behind the scenes.
Lollapalooza 2012 Photos