Best Surprise Festival Set

Jody at Lollapalooza

Critics' Picks

Just as neurotic bookworms like me have nightmares about showing up to a big exam late and naked, I'm sure professional musicians lose sleep to terrible dreams about their instruments breaking down in the middle of a career-making performance. At Lollapalooza last year, that nightmare came true for local experimental-pop production duo Supreme Cuts. They were supposed to play right after Kendrick Lamar, on a nearby stage where they would definitely draw some of his huge crowd, but their equipment failed less than a minute into their set—and within moments, audience members with short attention spans began wandering off in search of more beer or something that sounded like Mumford & Sons. Fortunately the Cuts had a few buddies on hand: R&B group Jody, aka David Robertson, Khallee Standberry-Lois, and James King, aka the GTW, plus their producer, Brandon Boom of The-Drum. They swooped in to save the day, and whoever stuck around saw one of the best sets of the weekend. Not only did Jody make their enticing, sinuous jams sound amazingly carefree under what had to be a crazy amount of pressure, but the set also turned into something that felt more like a party, with everybody's crew of friends jumping around onstage. It was great to see a genuine manifestation of Chicago's independent music community at a festival that rarely makes room for such a thing.