Lollapalooza Day 3 in review: photos, videos, and more

The final day of the 2013 edition of Lollapalooza was another gorgeous day at Grant Park, perhaps the best weather run the festival has had since it made Chicago its permanent home (well, Friday rain aside). It was good enough weather for our staff – Rummana Hussain, Tina Sfondeles, and Brandon Wall – to find the energy to prowl Grant Park for one more marathon day of music as the fest drew to a close with Vampire Weekend, Cat Power, and The Cure on a cool, starry night.

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Please enable Javascript to watch this videoDAY 3 BY THE NUMBERS


35 = number of minutes it took 2 Chainz to play his hit “Birthday Song”

1 = number of songs it took onlookers to realize Cat Power was worth checking out on their way out.

2 = number of arrests I spotted on Columbus Drive

50 = Number of bands who performed on Sunday


Festival goers fleeing Grant Park at 10 p.m. – 100,000 (but it felt like more)

Dudes dancing in an empty field with cardboard boxes for some reason – 3

Porta potty graffiti mocking Death Grips for dropping out of the lineup – 2


Five: The number of times a muscular young man tried and failed to Hula Hoop before giving up and attracting the attention of all the giggling girls who could see during the earlier part of Alt-J set.

At least five Power Rangers; one Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles and one Captain America graced their presence at Lolla Sunday.

Three: People on crutches

One: Conehead

The oldest member of The Orwells is only 19, but that didn’t stop the Elmhurst natives from delivering a blistering set of heavy rock music early in the day. I rolled up just in time to see the lead singer writhing around on stage as the band jammed out. It’s no surprise that this band is playing Lollapalooza – it’s a rare sight to see a band that young sounding that tight. The set saw the lead singer casually take off his pants, later declare “see you next year when we’re headlining!”, then toss his microphone into the crowd after an encore. Wild. – BW

Big props to the guy who was walking around in a Danilo Gallinari jersey, undoubtedly the most obscure jersey of the weekend. The Italian small forward for the Denver Nuggets (and part-time Armani model) played in 71 games last season before tearing his ACL. – BW

Off to day three with the California-based “The Mowgli’s.” Those asking, “Why the apostrophe?” band members have admitted to reporters they made the grammatical error while they were, um, under the influence. But English mistakes aside, even those less familiar with The Mowgli’s had to have enjoyed their show given the group’s laid back style, camaraderie and easy on the ears tunes. The folk-rock band’s members don’t take themselves too seriously, which made for an easy rapport with those on the other side of the stage. During the short 40-minute set, a few of The Mowgli’s even waved to a young man who scaled a light pole and lounged in makeshift hammock suspended a few feet in the air—not much unlike a stunt Rudyard’s Kipling’s fictional “Mowgli” would likely pull if he wanted a better look at his namesake rockers. – RH

Wavves did what any other garage surf rock band would do given the opportunity to play at Lollapalooza. Throw in some flashy displays and rock out. Besides the video screens changing imagery as the band played, this set was no frills, beachy-sounding rock. This young San Diego-based band has suffered some setbacks in the past, like alcohol and drug addiction, but it seems they’ve figured out a good formula and are focused on the tunes. – TS

There seemed to be an influx of cool children walking around with streaks of green, blue and red in their hair on Sunday. They must have gotten the memo…or maybe they were showered with the dye at Kidpalooza. – RH

Tegan and Sara were a delight and sounded wonderfully crisp live. In the middle of the show, Tegan Quin said she wanted the boys and girls to get down and show her the “Chicago moves” she heard about or at the very least, stand up straight and “bounce up and down” to “Hop A Plane.” Tegan often teased her twin sister Sara Quin about “surviving Lollapalooza,” in reference to their 2005 Lolla appearance in which an overheated Sara fainted, leaving Tegan to fend for herself. Needless to say, Sara made it and stood by her Ray-Ban wearing sister the entire solid set Sunday. – RH

Oh Grizzly Bear. You totally impressed me. I wasn’t sure whether the Brooklyn-based band would be able to translate its sound across the vast stretches of Grant Park, personally knowing how great they sound at intimate, inside venues. But they totally nailed it. The band last played Lolla in 2010. Since then, they’ve released another album, and continued their ascent in the indie rock circuit. Keep on making those tunes, Ed Droste. We’re all listening. – TS

Anyone hoping to get an up-close glimpse at The Vaccines, were in luck Sunday. The crowds at the Petrillo stage were relatively sparse, giving the kids enough space to break out the occasional cartwheel and mosh without causing any serious injury. The pop-punk rockers ripped through their set with enthusiasm and fury. “We’re The Vaccines. We’ll see you soon,” they vowed. No doubt you will. Just don’t tell Jenny McCarthy. – RH

The crowd dances wildly to Vampire Weekend | Tina Sfondeles~Sun-Times Media

After leaving Grizzly Bear to catch a bit of Vampire Weekend, I nuzzled my way into a spot behind a group of about 30 people, seemingly all together. Within seconds, the group all spontaneously formed a dance party. So much raw energy, so much fun. And I wasn’t even annoyed at their proximity to me. At one point, Vampire Weekend frontman Ezra Koenig told the crowd it was time to dance. That group had started the party long before his call. And the rest of the crowd all followed suit.

Now about the music, Vampire Weekend sound exactly the same on their albums. And that’s not a bad thing. My only criticism comes for singer Ezra Koenig. Lighten up a bit! It seemed his facial expressions were so serious during his tunes, but he cracked a smile once in awhile when the crowd reacted to a change in his guitar riffs. Perhaps he’s just really concentrating? To give him a bit of credit, Koenig did say he was enamored at the beautiful stage in the middle of the city. He said you don’t get those kinds of stages back in New York City. – TS

Sunday is traditionally a more relaxed day for Lolla goers, who have already taken thousands of steps around the park the past few days. I definitely sensed a bit of tiredness in the crowd, compared to the rambunctious nature (and cough, cough apparent drunkenness of fans) all of Friday and Saturday. The only exception? Perry’s Stage. Man, that stage was full of energy and packed the entire weekend with festival goers who came to dance and listen to electronic music and DJs all weekend long. Even those passing by on Columbus Drive broke out into impromptu dancing. – TS

Major Lazer is a project by noted dj Diplo, the man who bares the brunt of responsibility for making twerking a thing. It didn’t take long for things to get real weird and real out of control. Fists were pumping, booties were popping and shoulders were locking as the Perry’s Stage field. It was by far the most energetic set of the weekend, but left me with a real Danny Glover moment – “I’m getting too old for this.” – BW

Just like Chance the Rapper, Georgia native 2 Chainz was stuck in a shady, smaller stage, where people sat above ground in trees, and clung on for a spot to be in the hip hop maven’s presence. He had many fans abound, who knew every word to his songs. And when he asked the crowd if it was their birthday, they all went wild for his “Birthday Song,” singing along with the lyrics, “All I want for my birthday is a big booty hoe.” Come on. You’ve heard it! It’s catchy. This may be another hint, hint to Lolla organizers that there’s a need for hip hop/rap at the three-day fest. And perhaps at a bigger stage. – TS

It never ceases to amaze me just how terrible porta potties are. It is astounding that the best solution for portable bathrooms in the year 2013 is a plastic box filled with formaldehyde. There has to be a way. In a world where crowdfunding websites like Kickstarter fund some incredibly stupid projects, surely we as a society can come together to figure out something better. – BW

Robert Smith of The Cure started playing the hits right away. “Pictures of You,” The End of the Word,” “Love Song.” Instant happiness for the droves of fans who cried their eyes out listening to the band since the 80’s (and even late 70’s for the die hards.) This was a great nostalgia pick for a headliner. Also, Smith’s eye makeup was pretty amazing. Better than mine. That’s for sure. – TS

Love, love, love The Cure. The first half of their set was perfectly picturesque: Robert Smith bemoaning on stage as the sun set, the gorgeous Chicago skyline all around. The band moved through their hits at a steady pace but they may have played too many classics up front; by the end of the first hour, most of the songs were deeper cuts that lacked the punchiness of tracks like “Friday I’m In Love” or “Lovesong.” It’s unfortunate that such a great weekend lost momentum and just sort of petered out. – BW

I attempted the impossible. See a bit of The Cure, Cat Power and Phoenix. But after sadly leaving The Cure during an amazing set, I stumbled upon the small stage where Chan Marshall, aka Cat Power, would suck me in to her moody, melodic music. She had the crowd at her first croon. Very cool dark beats, amazingly strong and soulful voice. And blue and white lights flashing all over. This was the place to be if you were unsure of your headliner allegiances and wanted to try something new. She was so good I ditched Phoenix. And I’d love to see her in a smaller venue where she wouldn’t have to compete with the musical giants. – TS

You have to hand it to Robert Smith, who at 54, still charms singing his brooding hits in his messy make-up and wild tresses. But despite his doom and gloom lyrics, the guy really has a sense of humor. In the middle of The Cure’s Lolla show, Smith joked, “I hope I remember the words to the next song because it’s the wrong day before cranking out “Friday I’m in Love.” Many of The Cure’s fans have followed them since the 1980s, however their hits seem to have attracted a diverse crowd since the Decade of Excess. Every time the band played a recognizable hit such as “Just Like Heaven” or “Lovesong,” young teens pouring glow in the dark glitter over each other raged alongside head bopping fiftystomethings; Asian, Hispanic, white and black lit up in unison, whirling together in an emo rainbow that shone as brightly as the blue lights beaming on stage. Smith might have said Sunday always comes too late. But last night, Lollaers were in love. – RH

The mere thought of trying to navigate Grant Park and the surrounding downtown area as 100,000 people pour into the streets is enough to make anyone twitch. It seems like Phoenix let out a little early while The Cure ran a little long, so the crowds were scattered at least a smidgen. The streets were packed with rambunctious festival goers, and they certainly didn’t check their good vibrations at the gate as they left. The audible equivalent of “The Wave” broke out multiple times – chants of “LOLLA!” or “USA!” somewhere off in the vague distance, gradually growing closer, until everyone around you was chanting, and like that, it would continue down the street.

As for beating the crowd, I made use of the city’s Divvy bike program to escape. No waiting forever for a bus/train/cab, no standing in the midst of a pack of sweaty and exhausted festival goers. Less than five minute after walking out the gate, I was on my bike and on my way home. – BW

Final power rankings

1) Ellie Goulding / The Postal Service

2) Kendrick Lamar

3) Tegan & Sara

4) Father John Misty

– BW

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