2010 Lollapalooza Schedule: Thoughts and Decisions

The day-by-day 2010 Lollapalooza schedule has been released. And that means some tough decisions need to be made, especially if you’re not going for the entire weekend. But even if you do go for all three days, the constant congestion of walking paths and sprawling distance between the main two stages means there is little time to bounce around stages when two of your favorites are playing close together. With that in mind, let’s dive in and make some picks and air some grievances.

Friday, August 6:

the strokes lollapalooza 2010The competing headliners on Friday are The Strokes (pictured) and Lady Gaga — by far, the easiest headliner decision of Lollapalooza 2010.

Some others of interest are The Walkmen at 1pm, Mavis Staples at 2, The Black Keys at 6, and Jimmy Cliff at 7:15. While there are some other good bands in there, nothing that knocks my socks off.

Friday’s toughest decision is between The New Pornographers and Devo, both at 4pm. When it comes down to it, I just can’t pass up The New Pornographers. Then again … it’s DEVO! This might come down to one of those see-a-few-songs-then-make-a-dash-to-the-next-stage … things. And, in that case, the ending set to see is Devo, for “Whip It” alone.

Saturday, August 7:

green day lollapalooza 2010Saturday’s competing headliners are Phoenix and Green Day (pictured). I have never seen Phoenix, so I can’t comment on their live show. I do like some of their music and would be interesting in seeing them perform. However, I have seen Green Day and, armed with that knowledge, it leaves little in the way of a decision. Their show is high-energy, fist-pumping garage rock at its best. Sure, they’ve evolved and perhaps sold out a little but they are undoubtedly an iconic band and not to be missed.

Of note on Saturday are The Morning Benders at noon, The Soft Pack at 12:30 and Dawes at 3:30 (two of our picks for Lollapalooza 2010 show-stealers), Grizzly Bear at 4:15, Deer Tick at 5 and Spoon at 6:15.

Saturday’s toughest decisions are between Dawes and The xx at 3:30 and 3:15, respectively, and Grizzly Bear and Deer Tick, at 4:15 and 5. In these cases, I’ll pick Dawes over The xx and catch a couple Grizzly Bear songs before heading over to Deer Tick.

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Sunday, August 8:

Sunday is typically the day for the biggest headliners. But this year, with Soundgarden and Arcade Fire competing, it feels a little anti-climatic. They are both very good bands but compared to names like Green Day and Lady Gaga (I said names), 2009’s Janes Addiction and 2008’s Radiohead … Anyway, I have to go with Soundgarden here. I realize that this might be a total bust but the fact is, Soundgarden was HUGE to me back in the day and I just can’t pass it up. If they suck, I’ll walk the 20 miles to the Budweiser stage.

Other bands of note on Sunday are The Antlers at 12:15, Blitzen Trapper at 2, and Hockey at 3:30. There are several other very good bands on Sunday – by far, the day with the most difficult decisions. They are:

Minus the Bear vs. Mumford & Sons  (pictured) vs. Freelance Whales – 3 pm.

mumford & sons lollapalooza 2010Why, Lollapalooza did you do this? I would like to see all three, but that’s just impossible. Minus the Bear is one of the most unique bands around and Freelance Whales are emerging as an indie gem. But for my money (and lots of it) I’ll be at the Playstation stage for Mumford & Sons. Their combination of rock, folk and bluegrass is just too good. Plus, I’ve seen Minus the Bear before. But I’ll miss them.

Frightened Rabbit vs. Erykah Badu – 5 pm.

Again, I’d like to see both. Erykah Badu is not typically on my playlist but I have a lot of respect for her and she’s a master of her craft. Frightened Rabbit has real talent and seems like a nice one to catch in the waning hours of a long afternoon. Going with Erykah here – I’ll probably never go out of my way to see her but I know I should at least once.

MGMT vs. Wolfmother – 6 pm.

I’m not a college girl and I like rock music. Done.

Cypress Hill vs. The National – 7/7:15 pm.

Cypress Hill falls into that Soundgarden category for me, but The National are pretty damn good. This is tough because I’d love to see a pot-fueled crowd get down with “Insane in the Brain” but The National offer a more diverse experience. And, to me, rap is more difficult to carry off live. I’m going to have to split the middle on this one and see about half of Cypress then catch the rest of The National.

So there you go – Lollapalooza picks ala Sound Citizen. If I had to pick one day, I’m leaning toward Saturday because of The Soft Pack, Dawes, Grizzly Bear and Deer Tick, Spoon and Green Day. But Sunday has Mumford & Sons and they are very high on my list right now.

What are your thoughts? Please comment below!

I’m very interested to see a list of 2010 Lollapalooza aftershows — that might make these decisions easier. From experience, I can tell you that it’s well worth sacrificing a day (maybe two) of Lollapalooza to spend that money on aftershows instead.

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See our full, custom 2010 Lollapalooza schedule.

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13 Replies to “2010 Lollapalooza Schedule: Thoughts and Decisions”

  1. I don’t understand your comment on the MGMT v. Wolfmother conflict. Wolfmother is generic riff rock with no substance, while MGMT’s new one is a polarizing album full of psychedelic surf-rock jams in the vein of Spacemen 3. You say you aren’t a teenage girl and like rock music – who are you taking a shot at?

  2. @Rich,

    It’s a personal choice – I’m not in love with Wolfmother, but MGMT just doesn’t do it for me. Neither are a must-see for me, but I’ll take the attempted retro-rock stylings of Wolfmother over MGMT’s dance club fodder.

  3. I think Rich is speaking more about your degrading comments then your actual choice. At the very least, you’ll have an easy time seeing Wolfmother cos it’s gonna be packed at MGMT. Ridiculously packed.

    Disregarding the earlier sets, I think my days will go:
    New Pornos>Black Keys>The Strokes
    Grizzly Bear>Spoon>Cut Copy>Phoenix
    Yeasayer>MGMT>Arcade Fire

    Missing The National hurts so much though, their new album is amazing.

  4. OK, first of all…I’m guessing you’ll be hitting the Strokes’ set? I’d be at Gaga. Dying to see her.
    However.
    I hate Lolla.
    So I’ll be at neither.

    But thanks for your tiebreaker post…my sister is having a heart attack over which ONE day to attend, and this was a big help.

  5. I know you’re a rock guy but let me just say that if you’re the least bit into old school 90’s electro hip-hop, Peanut Butter Wolf will blow your mind! He has some insane mixing & video tricks.

    Other must sees – the XX, Stars, Edward Sharpe & The Magnetic Zeros, Yeasayer, Cymbals Eat Guitars. I have not seen Mumford, but I can vouch that Freelance Whales puts on one helluva emotionally charged, energetic show – playing an array of eclectic instruments. I can barely say glockenspiel, never mind identify it. It will be interesting to see how a band that in a year has graduated from subway stations and street corners, to more recently small venues like Schubas, can handle the monstrosity of Lolla.

  6. Worst scheduling in years, in my opinion.

    Putting Hot Chip and The Black Keys at the same time sucks… I know they don’t have same crowd but I love both.

    Devo vs New Pornographers? Seriously?

    Social D bridges Metric and Spoon on Saturday? Brutal.

    MGMT, Wolfmother, Cypress Hill and Flosstradomus are at the same time?? Who made that decision?

    The overall lineup this year is down from the last few… it is weak compared to Coachella’s lineup.

  7. Earlier in the year Hot Chip and xx played together at the Riv. From that experience i can tell you that xx has one of my favorite albums of the year, but they are so low energy live. In the Riv, they relied on lights and smoke. that won’t fly at Lolla. I love the xx, but i only plan on watching the beginning of their set before heading out to see a real high energy fun band: Gogol Bordello.

    Hot Chip puts on an amazing show, but since i already saw them, i’ll skip it for Black Keys instead.

    other conflicts: Mavis Staples vs Raphael Saadiq. These two should be playing together, not competing. I’d really like to see Temper Trap at a small stage, but its competing with MGMT and National. i guess its a half set for all.

    But my biggest conflict is Saturday night. Green Day vs Phoenix vs Empire of the Sun. I’ve seen Green Day, so maybe i should do something different, but they were great before. I hear that they won’t be playing as much from their newest album, which is a good thing. Phoenix would be fun to see too. But i’m so intrigued by Empire of the Sun playing at Perry’s. It sounds like a great party to close out the night.

  8. So many tough decisions…I’m going to need some track spikes to get from stage to stage. Not to mention, the park just added 25k tickets, and a bunch of more acres to the park. Who knows how far away these stages actually are?

    MGMT vs. Wolfmother ~ go see Wolfmother.
    -just saw MGMT at The Riviera. One, it was one thousand degrees the building, which unfrotunately took away from the show. First half of the show, down tempo. Not bad, just slow. Lots from their new album. Second half of the show, great…good pace. But – I’m not sure how that will carry over outdoors. Not to mention, this is going to be a YOUNG show. Super crowded, so be prepared. Wolfmother, loud, raw material, howling rock. Its going to be a high energy show, go see them.

    Cypress Hill vs. The National – kill me…on the fence
    -I can’t decide on this one. I’d almost rather see The National at their after show…can’t seem to track down a ticket though. Cypress Hill is going to be entertaining, fun…tilting that way.

    Hot Chip vs. Black Keys – maybe the toughest decision of the weeknd ~ Gonna have to say Hot Chip.
    -I’ve seen both, in the same venue. The Riv.
    -The Black Keys are amazing, don’t get me wrong. I saw Dan Auberach last year at Lolla, and I prefer him on his own. If you choose this show, you won’t be disappointed…cause they are simply genius.
    -Hot Chip. This is a high energy show. Its pretty much a dance party. This is the only reason why I am choosing this over Black Keys (as much as it pains me).

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