Big music festivals might not be the ideal way to experience music you’ve never heard before, but from a quantity perspective it’s hard to beat. I figure I saw 30 bands at Riot Fest this year, and of those, I had previously never listened to 13 of them. And that’s what makes a fest so … Continue reading Riot Fest 2019: Do You Realize??
How cool will it be to see both Slayer and the Village People at the same festival? And why not? Don’t be uptight. Have fun, bang your head, and shake your ass. Riot Fest continues to be the only major music festival that cultivates a unique identity. Why other fests have fully embraced the idea … Continue reading Riot Fest 2019 Lineup
I’ve been attending big music festivals in Chicago every summer since 2005, but it’s been many many years since I arrived anywhere near early enough to see the opening wave of bands. There’s always bands I’d kinda like to see who play before 2:30pm but 3-day music festivals are work and you have to make … Continue reading Riot Fest 2018: Whole Lotta Shakin’
It’s not easy being a grownup music fan. And the older you get, the harder (and weirder) it becomes. Your peers (i.e., your neighbors and your kids’ friends’ parents) can’t even pretend to understand why you’d choose to stand outside in the dirt for three days and listen to bands nobody’s ever heard of. And … Continue reading Riot Fest: The Music Fest for Grownups
Riot Fest once again proved itself to be the music fest for grownups. Grownups in black t-shirts. While all the other big festivals rotate the same dozen headliners, it’s great that Riot Fest has retained its punk rock focus. Maybe not as strictly as during its first several years as a multi-venue festival, but most … Continue reading Riot Fest 2017: No Dicks on the Dancefloor
I was never a punk. In high school I was a trendy little femme who liked the Smiths and sixties music. Duckie was my fashion icon. The only punk rock I listened to was the Dead Milkmen. The king of the punks at my school was a senior named Alex who came to class one … Continue reading Riot Fest 2016: I Remember Halloween