Peninsular Place

The Magazine

August 7, 2012

Adventures at Lollapalooza 2012 with Bruno Postigo


On a long train ride back to Ann Arbor, our resident photographer and seasoned festival pro, Bruno Postigo, wrote a review of his experience that was Lollapalooza. Over the three day extravaganza, Bruno shot some of the world’s biggest names in the music industry. He covered miles and miles of park surface running back and forth from one stage to the next, weathered an evacuation on Saturday due to a storm, dodged his favorite “frat bros” all weekend and somehow made it out to tell his story.

Below you’ll find a step-by-step replay of the weekend that was. To follow along with the journey, click the “i” in the upper right hand corner of each photo for information on what’s happening. Enjoy his memoir and just a reminder all of these photos and more can be found on our Facebook page. Hop over, tag yourself and your friends, share the albums and leave your comments and thoughts from 2012′s edition of Lollapalooza.







Lollapalooza 2012 // Day 1

[img src= 12 Friday/thumbs/thumbs_SharonVonEtten.jpg]Sharon Von Etten
I picked up my credentials and started shooting at around 3 p.m.. Sharon Van Etten was my first stop, a woman with a powerful voice. I overheard a fellow photographer say that she shot around 800 frames of her.

[img src= 12 Friday/thumbs/thumbs_Metric.jpg]Metric
Metric was the second stop of the day. I was excited to see how their music would translate to a live environment. I wasn’t disappointed, and neither was the crowd. The north main stage (Bud Light Stage) was consistently packed with people throughout the weekend, especially at night.

[img src= 12 Friday/thumbs/thumbs_SBTRKT1.jpg]SBTRKT
SBTRKT was calling my name after Metric. This time Sampa was in charge of the vocals and keys. Unlike his dj set in Detroit, this set felt more organic, with SBTRKT playing live drums. The post dubstep they create has been some of the most refreshing electronic music of last year, with the whole "brostep" phenomenon destroying EDM.

[img src= 12 Friday/thumbs/thumbs_SBTRKT2.jpg]SBTRKT
On that note, it was interesting that you could identify what stage people were heading to by just the way they dressed. Lollapalooza revamped their electronic stage. They got rid of the giant tent of doom, and thus appealed to a different crowd than in the previous years. Perry’s Stage was a mud bowl of testosterone and ear shattering bass. I decided to avoid that stage as much as possible throughout the weekend as intoxicated Greek Life members don’t make me feel at home.

[img src= 12 Friday/thumbs/thumbs_DieAntwoord1.jpg]Die Antwoord
I backtracked myself to see Die Antwoord. After watching their latest music video, "I Fink You’re Freaky," I made a mental note to check them out. I entered the photo pit and soon after, Die Antwoord’s dj emerged wearing a neon orange jumpsuit and a grotesque mask.

[img src= 12 Friday/thumbs/thumbs_DieAntwoord2.jpg]Die Antwoord
He got the freak party started and soon the female lead joined him. She’s a tiny blonde woman with black contacts that cover the sclera of her eyes. She reminded me of an Imp and she was yelling and flicking people off. The lead, Rapped, emerged after a couple minutes. He was as freaky in person and he is on the video. A mild sense of fear ran through my body being so close to him, especially when he stared dead into my lens.

[img src= 12 Friday/thumbs/thumbs_TheShins.jpg]The Shins
After their set [Die Antwoord], I decided to check out The Shins, and see the rest the festival grounds. I’m usually carrying 20 pounds of photographic equipment, so planning ahead and minimizing walking was essential.

The Shins with Port of Morrow being released not to long ago, are at top of their game. I was especially surprised by their live sound and how tight the band plays together. The crowd started singing along when "Simple Song" started. I found myself humming the tune as I walked to the media tent to grab some red bull, Boxed Water, and enjoy the delicious tea they have. The official water of Lollapalooza is Boxed Water. A company out of Grand Rapids, props to them!
[img src= 12 Friday/thumbs/thumbs_M83.jpg]M83
M83 was the obvious choice to follow The Shins, considering I photographed Dawes in Ann Arbor during the Folk Festival not too long ago. M83 is one of those bands that I’m not a huge fan of, but I can appreciate their music.

[img src= 12 Friday/thumbs/thumbs_m831.jpg]M83

[img src= 12 Friday/thumbs/thumbs_BlackKeys.jpg]The Black Keys
The Black Keys were next on my photo list, since the Black Sabbath photo pit was limited to only 7 wire photographers. The duo from Ohio have played Lolla in the past, but after blowing up, this is their first time headlining. Their sound has changed a lot over the years, but I still don’t feel that it translated to an arena sized environment. The band was tight and as epic as always, but left me wishing for more.

[img src= 12 Friday/thumbs/thumbs_BlackKeys1.jpg]The Black Keys

[img src= 12 Friday/thumbs/thumbs_BlackKeys2.jpg]The Black Keys

I decided to drag my tired body another mile to check out Black Sabbath. That mile didn’t seem like much when I finally made it to the other main stage. Black sabbath is as legendary as I expected. After their set ended, I was hungry for more, but Ozzy was probably craving carrot cake and had to leave. The CTA’s red line was hell, but I managed to find a seat and fell asleep until I reached my stop.


Lollapalooza 2012 // Day 2

[img src= 12 Saturday/thumbs/thumbs_Rain4.jpg]Rain Delay
I got on the red line heading to the loop, but little did I know that I was heading to "Lollapocalypse." At 3:15 p.m. one of the producers told me that park was going to be evacuated due to weather. The time came around and I decided to head back to the media tent while I got some shots of the angry concert goers.

[img src= 12 Saturday/thumbs/thumbs_Rain1.jpg]Rain Delay
I left the grounds through the media entrance and followed some producers to the Hilton after they told me that in 30 minutes, the sky would shatter.
I shot a few frames of people taking cover of the approaching storm. I decided to explore the street a bit, I walked down Michigan Ave a bit before the storm started.

[img src= 12 Saturday/thumbs/thumbs_Rain2.jpg]Rain Delay

[img src= 12 Saturday/thumbs/thumbs_Rain3.jpg]Rain Delay
People started to run for cover and people started yelling tornado!
I made it back to the Hilton to find a crowd of fratboys singing in the rain, and soon after a fight broke out. The air felt tense but I couldn’t stop shooting, I quickly put my camera away after the fight stopped. Lolla ended up tweeting that the festival was ready for action again.

[img src= 12 Saturday/thumbs/thumbs_TuneYards.jpg]tUnE-yArDs
We were informed that the bands would start at 6:30 p.m.. The tUnE-yArDs were my pick. The way their lead singer loops her voice reminded me of Michigan’s own, Chris Bathgate. The music had a heavy neo folk feeling to it, and the crowd was happy with it.

[img src= 12 Saturday/thumbs/thumbs_LP.jpg]LP
I made a quick stop at the BMI Stage to check out LP. She and her band were giving it all after enduring the storm.

[img src= 12 Saturday/thumbs/thumbs_Franz1.jpg]Franz Ferdinand
Franz Ferdinand is a band that I’ve been wanting to see live for years. They easily overpowered The Weeknd in my book. I was completely blown away by their performance.

[img src= 12 Saturday/thumbs/thumbs_Franz2.jpg]Franz Ferdinand
The Scottish band brought their "Euro Swag" to Lolla and I loved every second of it. I found myself singing along while I photographed them. I was sad because I couldn’t stay for their full set, but I had to leave early to shoot Red Hot Chili Peppers.

[img src= 12 Saturday/thumbs/thumbs_RHCP1.jpg]Red Hot Chili Peppers
I barely made the line and I was the last photographer they allowed into the pit. Running through the mud payed off and the Red Hot Chili Peppers were brought the house down. You guys shouldn’t need a description, it was epic. Fruciante was missing though, and that made the band a bit weak on that end.

[img src= 12 Saturday/thumbs/thumbs_RHCP2.jpg]Red Hot Chili Peppers

[img src= 12 Saturday/thumbs/thumbs_FrankOcean.jpg]Frank Ocean
I decided to check out Frank Ocean and call it a night. The stage was dimly lit and it was quite a challenge to photograph, but I know my way around my camera pretty well! Frank had the crowd in awe, and sang into people’s souls from his wooden stool. Although, I ended up getting a bit bored, so I called it a night after such a crazy day.


Lollapalooza 2012 // Day 3

[img src= 12 Sunday/thumbs/thumbs_LittleDragon.jpg]Little Dragon
I dried my shoes outside overnight, and I was more than ready to finish the weekend at Lollapalooza. I’m a pretty big fan of Little Dragon, so I decided to endure it in order to photograph the band. The frat boys seemed so confused when the band started to play. The same thing happened in Detroit last year when they played Movement. Yukimi, their lead singer, is so ethereal and provided me with some amazing shots. As I exited the pit, I was amazed by how loud the bass from the stage was cranking. Thank baby Jesus, that I wear earplugs or I would be deaf.

[img src= 12 Sunday/thumbs/thumbs_SigurRos.jpg]Sigur Ros
Next, I decided to check out Sigur Ros. Why? Because they are Sigur Ros! Icelandic people tend to make beautiful music. I was worried to see how they would play live, but once they started I found myself swaying side to side as I pressed my shutter. Their lead singer was playing the guitar with a violin bow while vocalizing. I wasn’t the only one hypnotized, the whole crowd was swaying.

[img src= 12 Sunday/thumbs/thumbs_ToroyMoi.jpg]Toro y Moi
Since I was hypnotized [by Sigur Ros], I stayed for their full set, and decided to check out Toro and Moi afterward. Their chillwave was solid and quite funky, but it was a bit too hot outside for me to appreciate it. Plus my shoulder was hurting from carrying my camera.

[img src= 12 Sunday/thumbs/thumbs_ATDI.jpg]At the Drive-In
Earlier that day, I found out that At the Drive-In had a closed pit and my heart dropped. I’m a huge fan of them and of the Mars Volta as well. I ended up talking to their publicist and managed to be allowed into the photo pit. I wonder if the tweet I sent to ATDI’s lead singer that morning helped?

[img src= 12 Sunday/thumbs/thumbs_ATDI2.jpg]At the Drive-In
Let me talk a bit of my favorite performance at Lollapalooza this year. At the Drive-In were as powerful as they were back in 2001. After photographing them I stumbled into my friend Will Oliver, from the blog "We All Want Someone To Shout For" and I hope he didn’t mind me singing along at top of my lungs. The angry teenager in me came back to life. Cedric, the lead singer had jokes for days, and I was cracking up so hard at his Chicano jokes. Being Latino has perks and chanclas.

[img src= 12 Sunday/thumbs/thumbs_MiikeSnow copy.jpg]Miike Snow
I decided to check out Miike Snow because I like his logo. To be honest, I found his set a bit lethargic, similar to his newest album. It wasn’t bad, but I wasn’t impressed either. It was fun to photograph though.

[img src= 12 Sunday/thumbs/thumbs_MiikeSnow.jpg]Miike Snow

[img src= 12 Sunday/thumbs/thumbs_Justice.jpg]Justice
Since Jack White had a closed pit, I got together with some journo friends and we headed to the opposite side of the park to check out the French electro duo, Justice. I have this weird love hate for Justice. I love their first album, but I was so disappointed by their second. The lost their touch there. Live, they were great. Smooth epic transitions and the fact that they stuck to only their own tracks was cool. Something that other dj’s never do. Their set and music has this heavy metal feel to it, but it was impossible to shoot them from the photo pit. This happened last year with Deadmau5 too. So Lolla, if you’re reading this, please let us shoot from the soundboard when the stage is so high up. I ended up shooting them from the crowd and managed to get a couple good shots. After all their, cross logo is pretty epic.

[img src= 12 Sunday/thumbs/thumbs_Kaskade.jpg]Kaskade
I decided to end Lolla by giving Perry’s Stage one last chance, and try to find my friends at Kaskade. All I found was mud, manure and frat boys. I shot for a bit and decided to check out Jack White since I was close to his stage.

I’m close to Ann Arbor now. See you soon Chicago, Bruno out.

Faces in the Crowd

Faces in the Crowd // Lollapalooza 2012

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