Closing day at this Labor Day weekend’s North Coast Music Festival was the culmination of three days of great house and hip hop music inaugurating the new event as a Windy City staple alongside other Chicago festivals like Lollapalooza and Pitchfork.
So how does this one hold up against Chitown’s other big-name music festivals? Quite beautifully actually. In comparison, the North Coast Music Festival emanates a certain underground vibe to serious music lovers. Both Lolla and Pitchfork boast great line-ups year after year, but North Coast offers a more soulful side throughout their line-up. In addition, because it was the year of its debut, it’s slot later in the season, and its location, the festival was able to avoid the overcrowding, overheating, and other hassles that crowds are forced to deal with for the other festivals. The other notable difference is the festival’s significantly lower cost in admission. And who doesn’t appreciate that? Considering this was its first year, the festival did the city proud.
Some of the acts the festival featured during the long weekend include:
- Day 1 – Friday, September 3, 2010
The Chemical Brothers (Live)
Paul Van Dyk * Pretty Lights
Paul Kalkbrenner * Orchard Lounge
- Day 2 – Saturday, September 4, 2010
Umphrey’s McGee * Moby (DJ Set)
De La Soul * Jay Electronica * Boys Noize
The New Deal * Laidback Luke * Future Rock
Benga * Jakob Dylan & Three Legs
Grace Potter & The Nocturnals * New Mastersounds
Van Ghost * Two Fresh Beats
- Day 3 – Sunday, September 5, 2010
Nas & Damian Marley * The Disco Biscuits
Lupe Fiasco * Benny Benassi * Flying Lotus
* Holy Ghost! * Mayer Hawthorne & The County
Green Velvet (Live) * Claude Vonstroke
Dirty Dozen Brass Band * Phantogram * Loyal Divide
Here is a recap of the events on the last day (Sunday).
After The Dirty Dozen Brass Band had their hefty crowd dancing with their high-energy, horn-heavy performance, Holy Ghost kept it moving with the duo’s eclectic blend of psychedelic-tinged electro sound.
Flying Lotus wooed the crowd with mixes consisting of layers of jazzy melodies and heavy bass.
A large crowd stood anticipating Lupe Fiasco to hit the stage. The Grammy-nominated Chicago native rapper kept the crowd vibing to his energetic but laid back style of rap with songs like “Superstar,” “Kick Push,” “Go to sleep,” and “Shining down.”
Although The Disco Biscuits put on a solid set, it seemed as though they left the crowd with much to be desired. Their fans still seemed to get into their set, however, which featured a trippy laser light show.
The main headliners of the night – and arguably the festival as a whole – Nas and Damian Marley closed out the night – and the festival – with a set that drew a bigger crowd than almost any other act in the festival. The duo’s performance of “Patience” from their recently released album “Distant Relatives” was certainly a highlight of the entire weekend. The duo’s former hits like “Road to Zion” drove the crowd wild while Nas fans screamed out the words to his renowned solo hits such as “Ether,” “Made You Look,” “If I Ruled the World,” and “Hate Me Now.” Their resident flag-waving Rasta who was a constant on the stage with them assisted in keeping the crowd hyped.
Overall, the festival was a hit. The mix of jam, hip-hop, and house and electro acts included and gratified a variety of musical palates. The vibe was gregarious and relaxed and the crowd’s spirits were as high as the performing acts’. As the self-proclaimed “Summer’s Last Stand,” a common tendency of any Labor Day Weekend festivity, a fabulous last stand this was for Chicago to leave the season on. The city looks forward to welcoming this new festival to it’s list of awesome events during their unbeatable summers next year.