When last year’s 25th anniversary of Lollapalooza expanded to four days and sold out within practically a finger snap, it was a no-brainer to continue that tradition for the 2017 installment. As a result, this year once again features eight acts in the finale slots representing today’s top rock, hip-hop, pop, punk and electronic players. Granted, having to choose between two major headliners on any given night is always going to cause some concern, but here’s a snapshot of what to expect from each to hopefully help make the decision at least a little bit easier.
Thursday: Muse (Grant Park stage) vs. Lorde (Bud Light stage)
Modern day prog rockers are sure to rejoice as the spacey sounds and striking visuals of Muse descend on day one with a sampling from the English act’s monumental career right up through its latest long-player “Drones.” But for those who prefer some ebb and flow rather than endlessly epic, New Zealand’s Lorde offers some dreamy electro pop from “Melodrama” (the long-awaited follow-up to her blockbuster “Pure Heroine”).
Coming off a five-year hiatus from releasing a full-length album, The Killers are back to introduce tunes from the forthcoming “Wonderful Wonderful” with tons of other danceable anthems. This year also marks a return of sorts for a repurposed Blink-182 (now comprised of original Mark Hoppus and long timer Travis Barker, alongside Alkaline Trio add-on Matt Skiba), who are slated to deliver plenty of pop/punk from the past up to the recent release “California” (also its first studio collection in half a decade).
Saturday: Chance The Rapper (Grant Park stage) vs. The xx (Bud Light stage)
Chicago knew all about Chance The Rapper long before the Grammys and the entire globe, so it’s a pretty sure bet that his set supporting the gospel-infused “Coloring Book” mixtape will be packed beyond belief. That’s not to say England’s The xx aren’t worth checking out for anyone favoring indie/electronic rock, though just make sure to at least stop by the hometown hero as he steps into the shoes of a full-fledged superstar.
Sunday: Arcade Fire (Grant Park stage) vs. Justice (Bud Light stage)
Speaking of indie rock, few have risen to the esteemed status of the always enthralling Arcade Fire, who just dropped a new batch of arty but accessible ear-candy called “Everything Now.” And then of course there’s Justice, the French electronic duo comprised of Gaspard Augé and Xavier de Rosnay, who are destined to tap into a blend of house, nu-disco and electro rock and possibly work their end of Lollapalooza up to the weekend’s ultimate dance party.
Lollapalooza takes place at Grant Park from Thursday, Aug. 3 through Sunday, Aug. 6. For additional details, visit Lollapalooza.com.