Sweltering heat and suffocating humidity did not stop fans from attending the final day of Lollapalooza 2018. Among the hot acts at Sunday’s events were Dorothy, The Vaccines, The Regrettes, Lyyke Li, Portugal. The Man, Lil Uzi Vert and Jack White. On the last and hottest day of this years four-day festival, some acts proved that Rock ‘N Roll is alive and kicking.
The first performance at the American Eagle stage was California band Dorothy. Singer Dorothy Martin and band mates delivered a blistering performance during their 30 minute set. Sounding like a modern Grace Slick, Martin led her bluesy-rock band through “Ain’t Our Time To Die” and “Freedom” off the new album 28 Days in the Valley. Dorothy are currently wrapping up their summer tour and will perform with the legendary Joan Jett August 8th in Cedar rapids, IA. Find tickets and more information here.
Swedish Singer Lyyki Li performed to a small gathering of fans at the Grant Park stage Sunday afternoon. Donning gold glitter on her hair and eyelids, Li embraced the popular festival fashion accessory and sashayed around the stage performing tracks off of her recently released album, so sad so sexy. Midway through her hour long set, a female guest made a surprise visit to the stage. Li embraced her guest and introduced her as a best friend. Li performed the track “sex, money, feelings, die” off her new album and tried to energize the crowd by asking them to sing along. Li’s own energy level was high as she danced around the stage and played percussion during a few songs. Li also performed the tracks “hard rain,” “deep end,” “utopia” and the title track “so sad so sexy” off her new album.
London rockers, The Vaccines played a mid-day set to a large group of sun drenched fans and some lesser sun drenched, who watched from a shaded area. Following the popular festival fashion trend of sports jersey’s, new drummer Yoaan Intonti wore a Chicago Cubs jersey and frontman Justin Hayward-Young wore an Eric Dickerson jersey. Their third appearance at Lollapalooza, the band premiered their new song “Let’s Jump Off The Top” from their new album Combat Sports and blazed through fan favorites “Teenage Icon” and “Wreckin’Bar (Ra Ra) from their self-titled debut.
The crowd gathered for Lykke Li grew increasingly larger for the two following acts at Grant Park. Portugal. The Man took the stage after Li, at 6:30 p.m. for a set that revived the hot and tired audience. Taking the stage after an introduction from Beavis and Butthead the band opened with a cover of Metallica’s “For Whom the Bell Tolls” and the Pink Floyd Classic, “Another Brick In The Wall.” Accompanied on stage by several backup singers, an upright bass and two violins, Portugal. The Man delivered a searing set that would make Beavis and Butthead get off the couch and dance. Other song performances included “Creep in a T-Shirt, “All Your Light,” a cover of the T-Rex’s “Children of the Revolution” and their single “Atomic Man” with a snippet of The Stone’s classic “Gimme Shelter.” Portugal. The Man finished their set with their 2017 Grammy Award winning hit, “Feel It Still.”
Head liner Jack White took the Grant Park stage next to close the four-day long festival with a set as hot as the weather itself. Die hard fans rushed through the gates for front row access to their favorites performances. Some waiting for over nine hours in the blistering heat, an act not for the faint of heart, considering there was very little shade on the stage grounds.
Some of those fans paid the $120 Sunday ticket price just to see their favorite artist. If that happened to be Jack White, his fans got their money’s worth. White took to the Grant Park stage next to close out the four-day long festival with a performance as hot as the day itself. Amidst a barrage of scorching guitar solos and tender acoustic ballads, White played songs from his solo career, as well as from his days in The White Stripes, The Raconteurs and The Dead Weather. White and his accompanying musicians seemed just as excited as the fans, even smiling at one another as they hammered out hit after hit from White’s extensive catalog. White himself was especially jovial. Having played an intimate show at Chicago’s Metro the night before and attending a Cub’s game earlier that day. According to WXRT-93.1FM, White accepted an offer to change the scoreboard after Anthony Rizzo’s home run calling the experience “One of the greatest days in his life.”
Opening with the “Over and Over,” the second single from White’s newest album, Boarding House Reach, the momentum and excitement lasted until the very end. Even when the tempo switched from fast to slow, each song flowed fluidly into the next. No small feat for a group of five musicians working without a set-list. White addressed and engaged the audience throughout the entire performance sharing stories and promising he would do his job by making them happy. In “Corporation,” another track from the new album, he addresses Donald Trump, singing “I’m going to stage a Nuremberg rally in the state of Ohio just like Trump” and “I’m building a corporation, Trump!” No doubt referencing Trump’s recent rally in Ohio as he attempts to propel his immigration agenda.
One of the best moments of his 90 minute set was when White dedicated the song “We’re Going To Be Friends” to his children Scarlett and Henry after sharing a story about one of his prior Lollapalooza performances. In the story, his daughter stops her dad seconds before he takes the stage to hand him a guitar pick she was carrying in her purse. He used that same pick to play the song Sunday night. Among the many other highlights of his performance this year was the alternate arrangement of “Hotel Yorba” with White momentarily joining Neal Evans on keyboard giving the song a saloon piano sound, and his poignant performance of “You’ve Got Her In Your Pocket” while alone on the stage.
White made good on his promise to please the crowd with his final song of the evening, the hugely popular, “Seven Nation Army” with the help of his trusty beat-up Kay Hollow body. White also laughingly expressed his surprise at being invited to return after he (in true rock star form) destroyed his dressing room at a previous Lollapalooza. Midway through White’s setlist, he asked the crowd “Is rock ‘n roll dead?” His performance and the audiences reaction answered that question with a resounding no. After thanking everyone in the audience, White and his band exited the stage, leaving festival goers with these final words, “Damn Chicago, you’ve been great… and I’ve been Jack White.”