Pitchfork Music Festival cage match: ILoveMakonnen vs. Jessica Pratt | Pitchfork | Chicago Reader

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Pitchfork Music Festival cage match: ILoveMakonnen vs. Jessica Pratt

What to do when the festival drops two of your favorite acts into the same time slot?


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Like most festivals with more than one stage, Pitchfork sometimes books two great acts to play overlapping sets, forcing fans to make a painful choice. Reader writers found quite a few of those conflicts on the fest's schedule, and thought long and hard about who they'd go to see. These write-ups compare those decisions with the "winners" as determined by Pitchfork itself, via rounded averages of the ratings the site has given to each artist's releases.



Friday, 4:35 PM, Green Stage


Jessica Pratt

Friday, 4:15 PM, Blue Stage

Last year, animated rapper and singer Makonnen Sheran, aka ILoveMakonnen, became a prince of Atlanta's weird-rap scene on the strength of the unexpected breakout single "Tuesday." Makonnen's flow can be unsteady and his voice is far from perfect, but his singing-in-the-shower confidence and enthusiasm make parts of this spring's Drink More Water 5 positively irresistible. He's up against San Francisco folkie Jessica Pratt, who exudes a calming mysticism on this winter's On Your Own Love Again (Drag City). Pratt tenderly weaves together delicate layers of acoustic instrumentation to illuminate her otherworldly singing, and her alluring, feathery voice can hit alien-sounding high notes or drop into a disarmingly feral lower register without disrupting her songs' mellow energy. Neither act makes music fit for an afternoon set at an outdoor festival, but I'm going with Pratt—the intimate, tree-shaded Blue Stage might help her set the mood. And there should be just enough time after she's done to see Makonnen close his set—I hope he ends with "Tuesday."

Pitchfork's call: Jessica Pratt, 8.1 > ILoveMakonnen, 6.7

Tobias Jesso Jr. vs. Panda Bear Iceage vs. Chvrches Vince Staples vs. Ex Hex Parquet Courts vs. ASAPFerg VicMensa vs. Sleater Kinney Waxahatchee vs. The Julie Ruin Perfume Genius vs. Courtney Barnett

Pitchfork Music Festival 2015

Read the rest of our Pitchfork Music Festival coverage

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