Sunday, July 13, 2003

Lollapalooza's encore

The rock extravaganza rolls into Riverbend Wednesday for the first time in six years

The Cincinnati Enquirer

After six years of silence, the boys (and girls) of summer are back.

The once-traditional Lollapalooza music festival is back for the first time since 1997. It will visit 30 U.S. cities from Boston to San Diego before its final stop in Portland, Ore., Aug. 24. It lands at Riverbend for an afternoon and evening of music, fun and games Wednesday. True to its tradition, this year's lineup features a variety of acts, from original alt-rockers Jane's Addiction to the newest sounds of Audioslave, the popping beats of Jurassic 5 and the garage rock of The Donnas. And the festival's midway will feature socially conscious vendors, Xbox competitions and a cell-phone scavenger hunt, among other things. The second stage, featuring a variety of

up-and-coming acts, will also feature appearances by bellydancers and daredevil Steve-O

(Jackass). Enquirer pop music writer Larry Nager and entertainment writer Mandy Jenkins offer their picks for can't-miss Lollapalooza acts.

Larry's can't-miss: Audioslave

Audioslave - there's lots of great stuff on the Lollapalooza stages, but this critic's pick for the not-to-miss show is Audioslave.

For one thing, no other group, not even founder Perry Farrell's Jane's Addiction, can match the members of Audioslave for Lollapalooza experience. Singer Chris Cornell's Soundgarden played the fest in 1992 and 1996 (and he even reunited his Seattle group, Temple of the Dog, for the final show of the 1992 tour). The rest of Audioslave - guitarist Tom Morello, bassist Tim Commerford and drummer Brad Wilk - played Lollapalooza with singer Zack De La Rocha as Rage Against the Machine in 1993 and 1996.

Those certainly aren't the only reasons. Cornell is one of rock's best vocalists and Morello is arguably today's most creative and dynamic rock guitarist. Put them together and the possibilities are endless.

But the biggest reason not to miss Audioslave at Lollapalooza is that high-octane collaborations like this tend to burn hot but not long. Catch Audioslave while you can.

Mandy's can't-miss: The Donnas

While all of the acts at this year's Lollapalooza are drool-worthy, The Donnas are an absolute can't-miss. If there's one group that definitely stands out in this festival lineup, it'd have to be this fearsome foursome of new-school riot grrrls.

If you haven't taken a listen to their bad-girl garage rock, you're really missing out - theirs is a sound that defies the image of today's young female "rockers." Their punky, guitar-driven, speaker-killing tunes invoke Joan Jett more than Avril Lavigne. They sing about skater boys, sure, but their depictions are decidedly less innocent with songs such as the obviously titled "Take me to the Backseat." Meow!

From the sassy "Take it Off" (popular with strippers) to the downright naughty "40 Boys in 40 Nights," The Donnas' tunes revel in breaking hearts and laws.

Girls will dig them because they're real ... and guys will dig them because they're barely legal and sexy. Just watch out - this music might bring out the stay-out-all-night juvenile delinquent in you.

If you go

What: Lollapalooza, featuring Jane's Addiction, Audioslave, Jurassic 5, Queens of the Stone Age, Incubus and The Donnas

Where: Riverbend Music Center, 6295 Kellogg Ave.

When: Wednesday, music begins 2 p.m. gates open at noon

Admission: $62.25 pavilion, $52.25 lawn. Available at 562-4949, 232-6220 or

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