Here’s our preview of Wednesday, September 22nd. Day 1 of the festival.

Canopy Club

Janelle Monae: 9 PM

Ok, let’s list all the bands we can think of that write densely plotted concept albums inspired by the 1927 silent film Metropolis AND experiment in genres ranging from R&B, classical, rock, rap, disco, and psychedelic… Got any? How about Janelle Monae, friend and newest collaborator to Outkast’s Big Boi and of Monreal’s Kevin Barnes. Monae’s full length The ArchAndroid is one of this year’s most ambitious records. Her show at Canopy Club promises to be one of the night’s best, maybe even best of the festival.

VIDEO: Janelle Monae, “Tightrope” [Live on Letterman]

of Montreal: 10:30 PM
The release of their new record is here, and False Priest is out in the world as of Montreal’s tenth full-length record. Kevin Barnes and Co. are bringing their live spectaculars to Canopy Club this year as the headliner of the entire festival and a definte must-see. One half glam-rock David Bowie, another half Rocky Horror Picture Show, of Montreal is best experienced in a flamboyant costume. If you don’t know a lot of the ultra-hip music of Pygmalion, you’ll like this show; it has pretty lights. This is the perfect place to meet a girl who listens to 1950’s radio plays.

VIDEO: of Montreal [Live]: Pitchfork.tv

High Dive

Common Loon: 9 PM
With festivals comes unfortunate conflicts, and in this case local favorites Common Loon might’ve caught the short end of the stick by conflicting with the excitement that will be going down over at Canopy Club. But if you’re planning on camping out at the High Dive for Built to Spill, this CU indie rock duo is something to see. This is the problem inherent with festivals — you have to miss somebody. So if you don’t think prog-R&B experimentalism isn’t your thing, you can’t go wrong with this CU indie staple.

VIDEO: Common Loon, “Mexico” [Live]

Built to Spill: 11 PM

Built to Spill bring their veteran status to the Champaign side of the festival at the High Dive night one and there’s a lot to expect from this show. For all you youngsters, this band sounds like Surfer Blood’s dads, but still hitting their spots like they have all their careers. Built to Spill is Modest Mouse if Modest Mouse never “sold out”, hired Johnny Marr, or let their music go on car commercials. Compared to of Montreal, this show might be too low energy — it’s just dudes playing guitars but definitely a solid performance expected from the band.

VIDEO: Built To Spill, “Distopian Dream Girl” [Live]

FULL SCHEDULE:

WEDNESDAY – 9/22
Canopy Club

9:00 PM — Janelle Monae
10:30 PM — of Montreal

The Highdive
9:00 PM — Common Loon
10:00 PM — Revolt Revolt
11:00 PM — Built to Spill

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