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Bikini Kill, The Raconteurs, and The B-52s headline this year's Riot Fest

Photo: The B-52s (Rune Hellestad - Corbis/Getty Images); Jack White ( Alberto E. Rodriguez/Getty Images); Bikini Kill (Jeff Kravitz/Getty Images

With Lollapalooza having evolved into its final form as a Top 40 festival and Pitchfork’s annual gathering mostly a celebration of the hottest new talent, Riot Fest has emerged as a Chicago destination for rock, punk, and nostalgia acts. Previous years have seen rare sets by The Replacements, the Misfits’ original lineup, and Jawbreaker, and this fall’s event will sustain that momentum by rising the curtain on reunited riot grrrl luminaries Bikini Kill and what will apparently be the final Chicago performances of new wave icons B-52s and metal titans Slayer.

They’ll join Riot Fest staples Blink-182, Rise Against, Bob Mould, Rancid, Patti Smith, and, of course, GWAR, as well as exciting additions like Jack White’s The Raconteurs. As is tradition, a handful of bands will be playing one or two of their classic albums in full. They include:


Against Me!—Reinventing Axl Rose + Transgender Dysphoria Blues

Avail—Over The James

Bloc Party—Silent Alarm

Dashboard Confessional—The Places You Have Come To Fear The Most

The Flaming Lips—Yoshimi Battles the Pink Robot

Glassjaw—Worship and Tribute

The Selecter—Too Much Pressure

Senses Fail—From the Depths of Dreams + Let It Enfold You

Taking Back Sunday—Tell All Your Friends + Louder Now

Ween—The Mollusk

Check out a poster containing the full lineup below, but let us also highlight a few of the smaller font bands that you should most certainly arrive early to catch. Philly punk outfit Thin Lips released a wonderful album last year in Chosen Family, as did indie-pop artist Caroline Rose (Loner) and alt-rockers Skating Polly (The Make It All Show). Chicago’s Kali Masi put on a thunderous live show, and the chill-rockers of Turnover are the perfect accompaniment to a breezy outdoor set.

Riot Fest unfolds from September 13 to 15 at Chicago’s Douglas Park. Pick up your passes here.


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About the author

Randall Colburn

Randall Colburn is The A.V. Club's Internet Culture Editor. He lives in Chicago, occasionally writes plays, and was a talking head in Best Worst Movie, the documentary about Troll 2.