BY ANDERS SMITH LINDALL
I went to bed wishing for a dose of thunder to enliven Lollapalooza. I meant it in the sense that we could use some hard-hitting rock to pump up what's been an underpowered festival so far, but it seems the weather gods took me literally. Back at festival grounds this morning, raindrops ping the tent where I type. So far, though, it's only a gentle, soaking shower--enough to muck up the already saturated fields, but no lightning or significant wind.
Last night my colleague Thomas Conner took the lead on Green Day's headline set, and his review rightly laments the band's blusterous excess. "Know Your Enemy"? I've seen it, and it was them. And what a missed opportunity: With the nation stuck in a stubborn economic slump that's put millions of Americans in unemployment lines--even as tens of thousands more still slog on foreign battlefronts--the times practically cry out for the kind of bracing reality check and cathartic call to arms that only a righteous, relevant rock band can deliver. Given their "American Idiot" pedigree, we know Green Day were capable of meeting that challenge, but Saturday, they didn't try.
Rain aside, today's already off to a strong start thanks to the Nigerian soul singer Nneka. I'll have more to say on her in a later post; for now, I'm off to the north end of the park for the likes of Dodos, Blitzen Trapper and Ike Reilly.
Meanwhile, we'll see if the rain dampens the fence-jumpers, who were downright brazen yesterday. Local blogger Robert Loerzel has more on that, including good photos. Note: I've updated our own reporting on the incident with a security official's account of injuries suffered in the melee, and subsequent arrests. For further reading on all things Lolla, check out Thomas's roundup of links to our Sun-Times coverage.