With all of the hype surrounding summer festivals this year, music fans have their pick of top-notch festivals. As one of the youngest, the Pitchfork Music Festival has emerged as one of the best.

With all of the hype surrounding summer festivals this year, music fans have their pick of top-notch festivals. As one of the youngest, the Pitchfork Music Festival has emerged as one of the best.


In its sixth year, the Pitchfork Music Festival, being held in Chicago's Grant Park on July 15–17, has made numerous “must-see festival lists” and was even featured as one of the 10 best festivals to see this summer, alongside notable events like Bonnarroo, Lollapalooza and Sasquatch. The tickets are cheap ($135 for a three-day pass, $45 for single day) especially for the amount of music you’ll be seeing (over 40 bands).


This year’s lineup boasts the return of former festival headliners Animal Collective, folk heroes Fleet Foxes, ultra-prog rock heirs Battles, rap protagonists OWFGKTA, and tons, tons more bands you should be listening to. Here’s another short list with more notables: Twin Shadow, Toro Y Moi, DJ Shadow, Destroyer, Deerhunter, TV on the Radio, HEALTH, the Radio Dept., Twin Sister, Yuck, Neko Case, Thurston Moore, James Blake, Curren$y.


So how did Pitchfork end up at the top of the heap? According to Chris Kaskie, president of Pitchfork, it’s all about the music.


This week, WickedLocal.com spoke with Kaskie about the music that will be featured at this year’s festival and the evolution of the Pitchfork Music Festival into one of the country’s best.


WickedLocal: Pitchfork recently made the top 10 Must-See Festivals this year alongside Bonnarroo and Coachella. Why do you think it was chosen?


Kaskie: I think it was chosen because people have recognized the festival’s music programming as well as the enviormental asthetic of downtown Chicago. I think it stands out, next to other festivals, aside from the size, because of the line up of bands and the prices. We try to keep a focused vision of our festival each year.


WL: The line up is all over the place, with bands like Odd Future playing the same stage as Neko Case and Twin Shadow. How did you come up with this year’s line up?


Kaskie: It was a pretty natural thing. Our thing has always been scouting emerging music at Pitchfork. We wanted a mix of music we’re presently very excited about as well as some bands, like Animal Collective, that we wanted to have back.


The line up is basically just a few of us getting together and talking about who we’d like to see.


WL: Are there any bands you’re particularly excited to see?


Kaskie: There are tons. Animal Collective is headlining again and that’s a big one. Guided by Voices, James Blake, Ema, the Tune Yards are a few more.


WL: How does this festival play into pitchfork as a media company?


Kaskie: This festival is a great way to connect with our readers and produce a tangible environment in our own fashion. It’s a snapshot of a time and a place. We’re able, over the course of a weekend, to get offline and focus on the music.


WL: Were you surprised to see the three-day passes sell out in under 24 hours?


Kaskie: Not at all. We’re a fairly priced show so people can make a decision early on to come to our festival without having to sacrifice other shows. They know we put on a great show every year so it’s an easy choice.


For more information or to buy tickets, visit www.pitchforkmusicfestival.com.


 


Bands at the 2011 Pitchfork Music Festival


 


Friday, July 15:


-- Animal Collective


-- Neko Case


-- Guided By Voices


-- Thurston Moore


-- Battles


-- James Blake


-- Das Racist


-- Curren$y


-- tUnE-yArDs


-- EMA


-- Gatekeeper


 


Saturday, July 16:


-- Fleet Foxes


-- DJ Shadow


-- The Dismemberment Plan


-- Destroyer


-- No Age


-- Gang Gang Dance


-- Zola Jesus


-- Twin Shadow


-- Toro Y Moi


-- Woods


-- Cold Cave


-- Wild Nothing


-- OFF!


-- Julianna Barwick


-- G-Side


-- Sun Airway


-- Chrissy Murderbot


 


Sunday, July 17:


-- TV on the Radio


-- Cut Copy


-- Deerhunter


-- Superchunk


-- Ariel Pink's Haunted Graffiti


-- OFWGKTA


-- HEALTH


-- Kurt Vile


-- Yuck


-- The Fresh & Onlys


-- Radio Dept.


-- Baths


-- Kylesa


-- Shabazz Palaces


-- Twin Sister


-- How to Dress Well


-- Darkstar