Pitchfork 2014 Begins This Weekend in Chicago

Last summer, made the mid-July trek to Chicago to cover Pitchfork Music Festival for the first time ever. This upcoming weekend, New York State’s favorite music-based website will be heading to the Windy City once again.

Pitchfork Music Fest will be held in Union Park from Friday, July 18 through Sunday, July 20. Three-day passes – along with single-day passes for Saturday and Sunday – have already sold out. Tickets for Friday, however, are still available through Ticketfly.

Pitchfork’s schedule offers an even scattering of fantastic acts throughout its extended weekend, and Friday’s yet-to-be-sold-out lineup is no weak spot in the festival’s overall roster.

Headlining Friday’s lineup is Beck, whose recently released Morning Phase is the twelfth album in an excellently diverse discography. Morning Phase displays Beck’s skills as a songwriter, with most of its tracks rooted in folk-style recordings. While his Pitchfork set will likely feature a good deal of material from Morning Phase, songs from Beck’s funk-influenced Midnight Vultures, his indie giant Guero, and his 1996 breakout Odelay will hopefully make their way into the performance as well.

The festival’s opening day will also include performances from 74-year-old Italian producer, Giorgio Moroderwho contributed to Daft Punk’s Random Access Memories last year, and Animal Collective off-shoot, Avey Tare’s Slasher Flicks.

One of Friday’s most intriguing acts is Sharon Van Etten, a singer-songwriter from Brooklyn who released her latest LP, Are We There in May. The album shows Van Etten’s songwriting as strong and genuine, and her performances follow the candid nature that often presents itself in her recordings.

Saturday’s lineup is led by Twin Peaks, a group of young Chicagoans whose melody-driven garage rock is categorized with Windy City acts like The Orwells and Smith Westerns.

Cloud Nothings play Saturday afternoon as well, offering a more veteran take on indie rock. Their April-released Here And Nowhere Else is a record full of energy and grit, which will likely translate to a festival setting very well.

Frontwomen will be a major theme as Saturday closes. Tune-Yards’ Merrill Garbus – who will be performing on Pitchfork’s Red Stage at 5:15 – is responsible for the eccentrically beautiful Nikki Nack, released through 4AD earlier this summer. And St. Vincent, whose recent appearance on SNL exhibited her art-rock performance style, will be next in line at the Red Stage.

Female solo projects Kelela and FKA Twigs will also perform Saturday evening, followed by headliner Neutral Milk Hotel. had the opportunity to cover Mangum and his band in Ithaca in January. Their performance was the first in Upstate New York in nearly two decades, but the effects of their extended hiatus went unnoticed at the State Theater. After touring for several more months, it’s safe to assume their set at Pitchfork will be an even more ambitious performance than Ithaca’s.

Sunday’s lineup features Syracuse-based noise rock act, Perfect Pussy. After receiving praise from Pitchfork’s staff writers for their debut album, Say Yes To Love, the Upstate five-piece has become one of the most anticipated acts at this year’s festival.

Other notable acts in Sunday’s lineup include shoe-gaze standouts Diiv and Jordan Lee’s folk-inspired Mutual Benefit, along with Real Estate, whose spring performance at the Higher Ground in Burlington spurred a trip north for .

Between Beck’s performance on Friday and Kendrick Lamar’s closing performance Sunday night, the Pitchfork 2014 lineup is set to consistently provide fans with incredible performances. And if 2013 is any indication, Phish won’t be the only reason to head west this weekend.

Check out Pitchfork Music Festival on FacebookTwitterYouTubeWebsite