The 5 Best New Bands at the Pitchfork Festival


After an amazing experience at Bonneroo, I couldn’t wait to go to my home town Pitchfork Music Festival. Braving the rain the crowds poured over to see Japandroids. Holy cow where I have been when it comes to this band. Obviously this crowd and the other photographers were on top of their game as the line to get into the photo pit easily snaked more than halfway back through the fans. These guys energy became apparent through the sound check and carried through the set. High impact dirty gritty punk is at the root of this amazing duo. If you get a chance to see them, do it, and fast.


Energy is exactly what I got during Sleigh Bells’ performance. I wasn’t a Sleigh Bells fan when the day started, but frontwoman Alexis Krauss changed my feelings. It was impossible to not be blown away by her. Performing the whole set with a giant ear to ear smile in between head banging, jumping, and high kicking, It was clear she was having fun. This has been the stand out performance for me so far. Fan or not, they put on a great set with the fog machine, leather jacket, spiked bracelets and all. This was a rocking set.


After the moment of edgy awesomeness, I took a moment to prepare myself for Hot Chip, one of the bands I was most excited to see live again. I caught them two years ago at Lollapalooza. I had the pleasure of being on the stage for their whole set which of course was a synth infused dance party. I could only hope that this set would be the same.

The sound quality wasn’t as great as I would have liked. From where I was standing, the vocals were overpowering at times. But, that did not stop me from enjoying every second of the set and I was definitely not the only one. A nice sized dance circle broke out next to me in a giant mud pit. That provided some of the best people watching and entertainment of the night.


I was beyond impressed with Ty Segall and his nice guy persona. Encouraging crowd surfing and even jumping as well, ithe set highlighted the band’s equally enjoyable mix of dirty ‘90s garage rock with a bit more polish, while at the same retaining it’s rawness.


I really like Vampire Weekend. I’ve talked to so many people about this band and I feel there is an even 50/50 love hate for the band across the board. I don’t think they are necessarily breaking the mold, but they’re pretty damn enjoyable. Soundwise, they nailed it, the best of the fest hands down. While I don’t think many people understood what Vampire Weekend was doing at a show like this, once they finsihed the opening song “Cousins,” I think the majority of the crowd remembered that music festivals are supposed to be a good time, and having them closing out the show ensured that. Snaking my way through the crowd after leaving the photo pit, I couldn’t help but dance my way through the set and was pleased to see a good number of people were having fun.

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All Photos (c) Daniela Montelongo