Going down this September 10-12 in Chicago’s Union Park, the Pitchfork Music Festival has put together one of the greatest lineups of the fall from top-to-bottom. Featuring the headliners Phoebe Bridgers, St. Vincent, and Erykah Badu, each day serves distinct eclecticism while also displaying the eternal taste-making prowess of Pitchfork. Here’s who we think you can’t miss at this year’s edition of the festival:
Dogleg had one of the most unfortunately-timed album releases of recent memory, as their debut record Melee was released the week that the world shut down due to the COVID-19 pandemic. After a year of waiting, we can finally hear them play these tracks live, and it’s bound to be legendary. The Michigan-based band brings an intensity and fervor that few can match on the stage, and their set would be a great way to start your festival.
Alternately, Bartees Strange had a hell of a year in spite of the pandemic. With arguably 2020’s best debut album in Live Forever behind him, he’s up for a big fall opening for Phoebe Bridgers, Courtney Barnett, and others. Live Forever’s multi-genre approach should come off excellently live — come for the pulsing rock of “Mustang” and “Stone Meadows” and get your groove on with the RnB stylings of “Kelly Rowland” and “Flagey God”.
The shape-shifting artist that is Yves Tumor is one of our most-anticipated sets of the weekend. After a turn to grimy, glammy rock and roll with 2020’s Heaven to a Tortured Mind, the enigmatic project of Sean Bowie surprise-released The Asymptotical World EP this summer that further fleshed out their intoxicating blend of funk, electronic, and glam-rock. Whereas previously Yves Tumor has operated in the shadows (their set at AFROPUNK Atlanta 2018 was an aural assault on senses in a smoky, dark room), they have quickly become one of our most essential artists, and their Pitchfork set might serve as a coronation for festival headlining status in the future.
Odds are that Andy Shauf is your favorite songwriter’s favorite songwriter. The cultishly beloved singer-songwriter from Canada is on an all-time hot streak with the release of 2016’s The Party and last year’s The Neon Skyline, with both being examples of some of the greatest storytelling in indie rock with callbacks to the warm, lush soundscapes of the 70s. He’s slated to play right at sunset on the festival’s last day, and you should expect it to be one of the most delightful sets of the weekend.
Hailing from Bogotá, Colombia, Ela Minus‘ music blends synth-pop with punk and Latin American undertones focusing on themes of rebellion and citizen power. Her 2020 album acts of rebellion is a percussive and entrancing piece of work, and her set on Friday is one that will wash over well in the September heat of Chicago.
Tickets are sold out for Pitchfork 2021, but you can check the resale market here.
Follow our Ones to Watch:
Dogleg: Twitter / Instagram / Facebook
Bartees Strange: Twitter / Instagram / Facebook
Yves Tumor: Twitter / Instagram / Facebook
Andy Shauf: Twitter / Instagram / Facebook
Ela Minus: Twitter / Instagram / Facebook