Concert Reviews

A Tribe Called Quest, PJ Harvey, Francis and the Lights & more at Pitchfork Festival – Day 2

Day 2 of Pitchfork started with high energy that lasted through the night. The Blue Stage, the smallest stage at Pitchfork, drew some of the biggest, most excited crowds of the day.  Punk rockers Cherry Glazerr’s fans filled the park for their early time slot (2:45), and frontwoman Clementine Creevy lived up to her punk rock reputation, crawling across the stage with her teeth bared and her tongue out. The band played a Pitchfork after show the night before at Schuba’s, so they were definitely warmed up for their Saturday set.

Alt-rocker Mitski also had a huge crowd at the Blue Stage, the smallest stage at Pitchfork. Wearing orange bell bottoms and a navy bikini top, Mitski sounded like a mix of The Cranberries and Debbie Harry. She poured her heart out and thanked her fans for making her dream come true before closing her set with one of her biggest singles.

After Mitski, the crowd grew even bigger for Francis and the Lights. Francis has been on the rise since the release of ‘Friends’ featuring Bon Iver and Kanye West. His set was the most energetic and original of the entire weekend; the intimate stage was a perfect space for Francis’ impressive and passionate dancing. He utilized the entire park, scaling the stage rafters then running offstage to climb a huge tree. While other acts drew bigger crowds and applause, no one gave their fans a more exciting performance than Francis and the Lights.

PJ Harvey channeled Bjork during her performance while still being completely unique. The 90s alt-rock veteran donned a black dress and feather headpiece and somberly marched onstage with her band, as if she was part of a funeral procession. She played her biggest hits as well as her newer music, combining that classic 90s sound with more modern, avant-garde vibes. Whether playing the saxophone or serenading the crowd, Harvey gave her fans an intense, soul-piercing stare.

A Tribe Called Quest headlined Day 2, and they were the best headliners of the weekend. The iconic hip-hop group have had creative and personal disagreements in the past but have since put aside their differences to create new music. Following the death of Phife Dawg last November, the group played their first show without him at the 2017 Grammys. Their performance at Pitchfork marks only their second time without Phife Dawg. When one of his verses came up, Q-Tip and the other members would turn their back to the audience, and a spotlight came down on an empty mic stand. The entire park jumped and sang along to new and old hits, making ATCQ’s set the best one of the day.