Arts

​LANY returns to Lollapalooza better than ever, maintains festival’s alternative roots

Though there were thousands of other people surrounding the band's set, it felt like the only thing to pay attention to in the entire world was LANY on the stage in front of us.

Image By: Photo Courtesy of Flickr

After three years, LANY returned to Lollapalooza — only this time they were bigger and better than ever. With a larger stage and a larger crowd, the indie pop band exuded confidence and charisma, much more than their 2015 set. Matching their stage presence, energy and enthusiasm, the crowd wasted no time shouting and cheering the second the band set foot on stage. Grins set into place on everyone around me. LANY is a somewhat lesser-known band, but considering Lollapalooza’s roots as an alternative music festival, LANY’s place in the lineup felt more than right.

LANY’s ability to command the crowd in both upbeat and slower songs proves their growth as a group and as individual artists.

LANY, pronounced "Lay-Nee," standing for Los Angeles New York, is headed by lead singer Paul Klein. Opening with "Dumb Stuff," it quickly became apparent that Klein’s stage presence would be the root of the audience’s enthusiasm and captivation. With his quirky dance moves and genuine interactions with the crowd, LANY’s set felt comfortable and personal despite its larger-than-usual size. Their set ranged from oldies, such as "WHERE ARE ALL MY FRIENDS" and "yea, babe, no way," to their newer, more well-known songs, like "Super Far" and "Good Girls," both of which are off their new self-titled album. Their upbeat tempos incited a groove of happiness and carelessness in the crowd, bringing everyone together in both a rhythmic and psychological connectedness.

Halfway through their set, LANY experienced technical difficulties with their sound. Klein reassured the crowd immediately, asking them to hang tight, but the crowd didn’t seem to have a worry in the world, still mesmerized by the band’s presence. To fill the time needed for the technical maintenance, Klein asked permission of the crowd to “mess around on the piano a bit.” Little did we know that meant an angelic and moving acoustic version of "Made in Hollywood," a song off of the band’s first album, Make Out. The audience cooed alongside Klein, forgetting the technical difficulties and losing themselves in the softer, more intimate take on the song.

LANY’s ability to command the crowd in both upbeat and slower songs proves their growth as a group and as individual artists. Though there were other stages and thousands of other people surrounding LANY’s set, it felt like the only thing to experience and pay attention to in the world was LANY on the stage in front of us.

It is exactly these kinds of performances and artists that make Lollapalooza-goers come back every year.

As soon as their sound mechanics were fixed, LANY had the crowd up and amped almost instantly. “Let’s get back to dancing,” Klein shouted before the intro notes to their new single, "Thru These Tears," sounded throughout the space. Klein spoke to the audience, saying he wrote the song about a difficult time he went through at 17, speaking to the personal meaning the song holds to him. The crowd wasn’t just swaying and dancing to the sound of the music and the catchy rhythms, but were moving in response to their own sense of relatability to the lyrics: “In the end I'm gonna be alright / But it might take a hundred sleepless nights / To make the memories of you disappear / But right now I can't see nothing through these tears.”
Closing out their performance, the indie pop band cemented their fans’ love with a crowd favorite: "ILYSB," the song that first brought attention and popularity to the band. Performing it three years after its initial release made it that much more special for the band and its loyal followers.

It is exactly these kinds of performances and artists that make Lollapalooza-goers come back every year. Though bigger names such as Post Malone, Bruno Mars, Travis Scott and The Weeknd are undoubtedly going to bring new sounds, and therefore new faces, to Grant Park, it’s the indie- and alternative-based artists such as Arctic Monkeys, Walk the Moon, Rex Orange County, Billie Eilish and, of course, LANY that make the festival what it is.

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