For 15 years now Chicago-based Riot Fest has been a multi-day music festival specializing in punk, rock, alternative, metal, and hip-hop. Although festivals are popping up more every year, Riot Fest 2019 still manages to stand out amongst the crowd. Not only does the festival remain musically diverse, but most bands and/or their setlists remain exclusive to Riot Fest. Below you’ll find a few artist highlights and what we’re expecting from their sets to help get you in the mood for Riot Fest weekend or give you that nudge you need to purchase your ticket already. Riot Fest 2019 will be September 13-15 in Douglas Park, Chicago and you can still get your tickets here.
Top 5 Acts playing Riot Fest 2019 you might not know but definitely should
Long Island native Caroline Rose has such a unique voice and personality to match that there’s really no other artist quite like her out there. Rose’s music is genre-bending so I’m expecting the crowd to be diverse and energetic during her set, not to mention she has a kick-ass sense of humor that is often portrayed in her music videos that will likely translate to live shows. Top tracks she’s likely to play: “Bikini,” “Soul No. 5,” and “More Of The Same.”
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This Toronto punk band really stands out with their latest release Optimal Lifestyles—sure they sing about pizza and hangovers like every other punk band out there, but there’s also a newfound layer of self growth. They verge on the edge of fun and catchy, but also cynical and reflective. I’m expecting a really fun and energetic set with a ton of sing-a-long moments from the crowd. Top tracks they’re likely to play: “Mid 20’s Skateboarder,” “I Don’t Matter at All,” and “Thirsty and Humble.”
There’s something so charming about this Philadelphia-based band—they’re relatable and play catchy as hell music. I’m expecting them to play a majority of songs off their new album Deals, Deals, Deals!, which is one of the best punk albums recently released. Their lyrics are clever, and combined with their dual vocals, Ramona is reminiscent of Chicago legends The Lawrence Arms. Needless to say I don’t think we’ll be disappointed. Top tracks they’re likely to play: “Panama by Van Halen," “Shit, We Broke Up,” and “Not Your Token.”
Turnover is a band to listen to for any occasion—road trips, lying in bed, post-breakups, a hot Chicago day in the park—take your pick here and you can’t go wrong. These Virginia natives pair heartfelt lyrics with their dream pop sound so poignantly you’ll be addicted to their songs before they’re even over. I’m expecting a laidback performance with clean vocals allowing the songs to build and speak for themselves. Top tracks they’re likely to play: “Super Natural,” “Dizzy on the Comedown,” and “Cutting My Fingers Off.”
I can’t get enough of this LA-based band, especially their 2019 release Stuffed & Ready. Clementine Creevy’s lead vocals are so dreamy and pair perfectly with the band’s subtle grunge-rock sound. I’m expecting smooth vocals melting into fuzzy guitars with giant blown-up cherries in the background—a literal dream. Cherry Glazerr has the potential to be an ultimate crowd pleaser bridging the gap between rock, alternative, and pop. Top tracks they’re likely to play: “Juicy Socks,” “Daddi,” and “Ohio.”