Last weekend Riot Fest Music Festival & Carnival (& John Stamos' art gallery) settled into Chicago's Douglas Park for the third year, cementing itself as the coal-turned-diamond in the city's bloated festival circuit.
After being unceremoniously booted from nearby Humboldt Park in 2015, it seemed Riot Fest's future in the Second City was largely in question. The move to Douglas Park that year wasn't without controversy either, as an agreement had to be struck with the nearby hospital over noise concerns.
Now though, Riot Fest seems to have found a permanent, happy home, with the neighborhood and fans alike embracing the change. In facing these challenges head-on, the organizers have produced the most anticipated music event in a city that boasts Lollapalooza prime, Pitchfork and a litany of others too long to list.
With a reputation for reuniting long-defunct bands, such as the Replacements and Misfits in year's prior, this year's edition saw the triumphant return of Jawbreaker closing the festival on Sunday night.
Trent Reznor's Nine Inch Nails headlined the opening night with the ferocity that's come to be expected in the band's close to 30 year existence. Hometown hero Vic Mensa as well as New York's Action Bronston and Death From Above featured as the day's other highlights.
Saturday featured the band we were most excited for, Queens of The Stone Age, with Josh Homme presenting songs from the band's newest album, Villians, for the rowdy fest's consumption. Wu-Tang Clan also returned playing the entirety of their album Enter the Wu-Tang (36 Chambers), but we were most glad to see Beastie Boy Mike D take to the stage for a DJ set. Saturday made for a heavy day of full album retrospectives with Danzig bringing Danzig III to life as well.
Energetic sets from Prophets of Rage, TV on the Radio and M.I.A. rounded out the mighty offering from the continually improving festival on it's final days. With dates already announced for September 14-16, 2018 we can't wait to see who Riot's reviving for next year's edition.