Though Lollapalooza proper happens within the ever-expanding confines of Grant Park, the festival experience is felt all across Chicago. This year as much as any other, the pre-party and after-party experience was in full effect, with concerts, DJ sets, and exclusive VIP happenings occurring all over the city. Below is a sample of CVU‘s findings on the Lollapalooza experience, outside of Lollapalooza.
Thursday, August 2nd
On the eve of Lollapalooza, the festival atmosphere was heavy in the air. An early evening affair held by SPIN and The Windish Agency gave scenesters and attendees a chance to mingle on the spacious 6th floor deck of the W Hotel downtown. The vibe was light and breezy, as industry types drank wine and discussed who they were looking forward to seeing over the coming weekend.
The lighter mixer feel carried over to another early evening affair at Debonair in Wicker Park. Outside, one of the club’s windows boasted the guitar trophy for the weekend’s annual celebrity kickball game. Inside, the private meetup allowed industry types to pick up their wristbands for the weekend, while Do312’s Jeremy Scheuch DJ’d the event for bloggers, artists, and more. Given the tempest of a weekend on hand, a more intimate event was a nice calm before the storm.
On the opposite end of the spectrum, downtown’s Angels & Kings was packed and full of life, lights, and heavy branding. DJ’ing the room were Pete Wentz and Spencer Peterson of Black Cards, Wentz’s post-Fall Out Boy outfit. While the W and Debonair happenings were occupied by a fair share of industry, the AK soiree was held down in full by the downtown crowd.
Friday August 3rd
Friday afternoon kicked off the Hard Rock Hotel’s It’s So Miami Oasis three day run, which featured brands and vendors offering services and complimentary eats and drinks. The spread offered an array of amenities, geared towards those looking to relax on plush couches instead of sweating in the sweltering sun down the street at Lollapalooza. As with the AK event the night before, branding was in full effect from top to bottom, from couch pillows to model body paint. Outside, a 4th floor deck provided a view of Michigan Avenue, with fake turf underfoot providing artificial greenery.
Saturday August 4th
Saturday’s midday delay at Lollapalooza impacted not only the festival itself, but also after-parties, as well. Thus, local rockers Kill Hannah’s Saturday night set at Bottom Lounge was slightly delayed and abbreviated, but pleasing to the assembled crowd of RSVP’d attendees. During a compact performance, the power rockers dipped into their dreamier back catalogue, pulling from ‘90s fan favorites like “Hummingbirds The Size Of Bullets” and “Nerve Gas.”
Meanwhile, over in Wicker Park, Debonair hosted a full main room of drunken partygoers. So full was the club that it often proved difficult just moving through the crowd. On the decks, Chris Holmes of Ashtar Command and Greg Corner DJ’d, with the latter DJ/bassist arriving almost instantly after his Bottom Lounge set with Kill Hannah. Resident Lolla celebrity Aaron Paul, aka Breaking Bad’s Jesse Pinkman, held court inside and graciously posed for pictures with numerous fans.
Sunday August 5th
Closing out the weekend was the Hard Rock Hotel’s swan song event. Outside, lines began forming before the evening’s Lollapalooza headliners were even done performing. Upstairs, two separate areas hosted those who were able to find their way in, with a swank and plush VIP area on one side of a velvet rope, and a carpeted ballroom on the other.
Across the weekend, the festival’s after-parties and live music sets, afternoon escapes and brand campaign activations, proved successful and enjoyable. What’s more, the selections provided a level of variety on par with Lolla itself. A well executed delivery of ancillary events, surrounding a massive weekend of music and socializing.
Dynasty Podcasts & Rockit Ranch Productions Present: Rockit.LIVE: What Happened To The Chicago Rock Scene?
Dynasty Podcasts is proud to announce the next installment in the Rockit.LIVE event series! Taking place Wednesday, April 18th at 6PM at Rockit Bar & Grill, Dynasty Podcasts and Rockit Ranch Productions are proud to present:
What Happened To The Chicago Rock Scene?
A live panelcast discussion examining the shifting (disappearing?) rock climate in the Chicago music scene.
(Former rock radio DJ)
The 18+ event is free to attend, and will also be streamed live via the Dynasty Podcasts Mixlr and Ustream channels. Additionally, the panel event will later be released as an audio and video Dynasty Podcast. RSVP on Facebook now , and come out Rockit River North on Wednesday, April 18th at 6PM for Dynasty Podcasts & Rockit Ranch Productions present a Rockit.LIVE panelcast: What Happened To The Chicago Rock Scene!
This week on Dynasty Podcasts Live Broadcast: A John Hughes Valentines Day Live Tribute broadcast podcast! Recorded onsite at Debonair on Valentine’s Day night, the night’s talent checks in on the broadcast. Tom Gavin and Dan Brunelle of Gemini Club share plans for their forthcoming Here We Sit EP, Greg Corner reveals John Hughes’ role in the origins of Kill Hannah, and Saam Hagshenas previews upcoming plans for Hey Champ. Plus: a cameo from Anthony Spina. Stream or download that podcast below.
Members Of Kill Hannah, Hey Champ, Local H, Gemini Club, & More Come Together For A John Hughes Valentine, Dynasty Podcasts Broadcasts Live
In the grand tradition of Chicago supergroups like Gaylords and Them Crooked Vulvas, Kill Hannah‘s Greg Corner has assembled a powerhouse of Chicago rockers for a one night Valentine’s event at Debonair. A John Hughes Valentines Day Live Tribute features members of Kill Hannah, Hey Champ, Local H, The Lovehammers, Gemini Club, The Handsome Devilz, The Streets on Fire, and more, who together make up The Shermer High School Band. The group will be performing selections from Hughes classics like Pretty In Pink, Sixteen Candles, Breakfast Club, Ferris Bueller’s Day Off, and more, tonight, Tuesday, February 14th. The event is free before midnight with RSVP via Do312. And look for Dynasty Podcasts to be broadcasting onsite from the event, with a podcast of that broadcast to post in the near future.
This week on the ChicagoVerseUniteD audio podcast: Mat Devine, Greg Corner, Dan Wiese, and Elias Mallin of Kill Hannah! In an interview recorded at the group’s practice space, the members of Kill Hannah look back on the band’s year off, reveal early details about a new album, and revisit the origins of their New Heart For Xmas concert tradition. Stream or download that podcast below, and check out Kill Hannah this Friday, December 16th, at JBTV, and Saturday, December 17th, at Bottom Lounge (tickets still available), for New Heart For Xmas 8! And stick around on Saturday night, for two New Heart after-parties, happening on the first and second floors of the Bottom Lounge.
Watch a promo for the band’s Fuse tour of Chicago, followed by a clip of Kill Hannah performing “Believer” at a previous JBTV appearance.
ChicagoVerseUniteD is a weekly music and nightlife podcast series, hosted by Jaime Black. CVU features interviews with the premier talent and tastemakers in the Chicago music and nightlife communities, and is published through the Dynasty Podcasts network. Follow along on Facebook, Twitter, Bandcamp, Soundcloud, Mixcloud, YouTube, Vimeo, Tumblr, and Posterous.
Kill Hannah Release Clip For “Why I Have My Grandma’s Sad Eyes,” Mat Devine Promises ‘It Gets Better’
Following the announcement of this year’s New Heart For Xmas events, Kill Hannah has uploaded a video for its track “Why I Have My Grandma’s Sad Eyes,” off the band’s 2009 effort, Wake Up the Sleepers. The clip was produced and directed by “Spooky” Dan Walker and features frontman Mat Devine in a tight spot against supernatural captors. Find that heavily stylized clip below.
The band will perform a Storytellers-type set at JBTV on December 16th with a full headlining slot on December 17th at Bottom Lounge for this year’s New Heart For Xmas 8. Tickets for the Bottom Lounge show are currently on sale. In other Kill Hannah news, Devine recently posted his own heartfelt It Gets Better video, encouraging individuality and non-conformity. Find that message below.
New CVU Podcast: Debonair Social Club | Live Review: The Bones Brigade (Kill Hannah/Local H/The Streets On Fire) @ Debonair Social Club
This week on the ChicagoVerseUniteD audio podcast: Claudia Gassel and “Red Hair” Matthew Murray of Debonair Social Club! In an interview recorded onsite at Debonair Social Club this past Sunday night, October 30th, the club’s managers reflect on the venue’s past five years, delve into its origins, and share why Debonair has endured when so many other spots haven’t. Stream or download that podcast below, followed by a live review of The Bones Brigade, the local supergroup who performed on Sunday night, comprised of members of Kill Hannah, Local H, The Streets On Fire, and more!
CVU120 – Debonair Social Club Five Year Anniversary
The Bones Brigade
Debonair Social Club, Chicago, IL
Sunday, October 30, 2011
It’s not always particularly publicized, but some version of the group who played this Sunday under the title The Bones Brigade has been performing sporadically throughout the city the better part of the last decade. A Chicago scene supergroup of sorts, the act has included members of Kill Hannah, Local H, Alkaline Trio, Assassins, and assorted other music and nightlife regulars from across the city. Known under names like The Gaylords, A Perfect Circus, and Them Crooked Vulvas, the band specializes in rock, retro, and post-punk covers, with this Sunday’s set being no exception.
Comprised of Kill Hannah bassist Greg Corner and drummer Elias Mallin, as well as guitarist Tom Schleiter (ex-Powerspace), the group featured Local H’s Scott Lucas as its primary vocalist. The multi-band frontman tore through faithful versions of The Cult‘s “She Sells Sanctuary” and “Mountain Song” by Jane’s Addiction, as well as TV On The Radio’s “Wolf Like Me, a live staple for the singer. The Streets On Fire singer Chadwick, meanwhile, took on Joy Division‘s “Digital,” bringing a manic energy to the performance with his hyper stage presence. As it was the venue’s five year anniversary, Debonair staff joined in as well, with singer-songwriter Erin Gipson putting a brat-punk stamp on Barry Mann‘s “Who Put the Bomp (In the Bomp, Bomp, Bomp)” and “Red Hair” Matt joining Lucas for a crowd-pleasing version of KISS anthem “Rock and Roll All Nite.” And Kill Hannah frontman Mat Devine joined in to lead a cover of Billy Idol hit “Dancing with Myself.” See video of that performance below, and keep a watch on New Years Eve loft parties and Halloween DJ events. A collection of Chicago’s finest just might come together to deliver another night of covers of the music they grew up on.
It’s been a quiet year for Kill Hannah, due in no small part to frontman Mat Devine’s role in the broadway production of Spider-Man: Turn Off The Dark. But now, following an absentee season last December, Kill Hannah is bringing its long-running holiday event back to Chicago, with details on New Heart For XMas 8 hitting the web today. Set to be the group’s only live performances this year, New Heart 8 will occur December 16th, in a special Storytellers-type set at JBTV complete with meet and greet and DVD taping, and December 17th at Bottom Lounge, with an after-party to follow. Event tickets and VIP weekend passes go on sale via the TicketWeb site this Friday, October 14th at 12 noon CST time, with the weekend package also yielding fans perks like a limited edition poster as well as a free, previously unreleased Kill Hannah track. Watch CVU for more coverage from New Heart, as well as exclusive behind the scenes content from the events.
Facing an uncertain future, Q101‘s Local 101 has begun bringing flagship Chicago acts on the program for a series of exit interviews. Click below to hear the complete version of the Local 101 interview that partially aired on last night’s program. Local 101 host Chris Payne and producer Jaime Black check in with Kill Hannah‘s Mat Devine and Greg Corner to talk about the band’s history with Q101, as well as what the future holds for the group, in what may be Kill Hannah’s final Q101 interview.