I went to Riot Fest and all I got was to see my favorite bands. (And possibly pneumonia)

I went to Riot Fest and all I got was to see my favorite bands. (And possibly pneumonia)

26 poignant thoughts on the best music weekend ever, by Kevin DeLury



1) Here we are in beautiful Humboldt Park. As far as a venue for a festival of this magnitude goes, you can’t beat it. It’s got definite character, and at no point did I feel the onset of the panic attack so often prompted by wading through the grounds of Lollapalooza and their ilk. That said, I’d better double up on Xanax in case of a swell of people and/or an existential crisis when it dawns on me I’m no longer relevant.

2) Time for some music, sunshine and…$7 beers? Oh, boy. Okay, suck it up. I know they put on a hell of a festival and they’ve gotta recoup. Hell, who knows who’s even determining the prices?

Note for tomorrow: crotch whiskey.

3) A word on carnies: god bless ‘em. At no other time in life would you look to these toothless, meth-addled, salt-of-the-earth folk operating machines that could easily kill you and say “Hell yeah! Let’s do this!”

4) The first act of my Riot Fest day was Hatebreed. It was like an awesome 45-minute long MMA entrance theme. I’ve gotta get back in the gym starting Monday (afterword: I did not go to back the gym on Monday).

5) How are people already passed out on the ground? Is this the ghost of Riot Fest Future issuing a dire premonition?


6) Fall Out Boy brings out Jeff Pezzati and no one around me knows what the hell is going on. It was pretty great.

7) According to social media, the Stanley Cup made an appearance. I’m sure, as is the case with most life events, I was in line for the bathroom.

8) Made my way to Bulhead Cantina from some delicious tacos. At least I think they were delicious. I was drunk and exhausted to the point of delirium.

9) Oh man, it’s my dad’s birthday tomorrow. This is gonna be ugly.


1) Woke up to about 20 text messages all from the night prior, all delivered many hours after the fact. Made my way to commiserate with dear old dad. He seem confused with the Justin Bieber wrapping paper I used, but more than enthralled with the card that, when opened, has an overweight stripper whose bosoms vibrate wildly. Familial obligations out of the way, it’s time for day 2.

2) Crotch whiskey, you’re my only friend. I thought I was being super-thrifty, but I was quickly put to shame by : 1) the guy who hoisted about 50 beers over the fence to an awaiting retrieval crew and 2) the guys who snuck in boxed wine.

3) When did furry tails/ears/pelts become a viable fashion statement with the youth?


4) I love Glassjaw — in my eyes, they can do no wrong — but man, those drums for the first half of the set sounded way off. Thankfully, they got it together and busted out a good mix of the hits along with the newer “hardcore for former straight edge kids who are now aspiring junkies” stuff off of the Coloring Book EP.

5) I could have watched the luchadores all day. It was that entertaining. The pageantry of these mysterious warriors is awe-inspiring.


6) Wow, Taking Back Sunday packs them in. I enjoyed the emotional stylings of yesteryear from roughly a quarter of a mile back, stuck under a tree next to some dudes smoking the worst festival weed ever I’ve ever smelled. Bath salts might have been a step up.

7) Fun fact: apparently right before I black out, I know all the words to “Rock Show” by Blink 182. Who knew?

8) A huge thank you to the UberX driver who rather than murdering me, ushered me home safely and without incident. 5 stars. Would drunkenly ride again.


1) Sunday can be summed up with the following image: Three tweens in Fall Out Boy hoodies morosely eating pizza slices in the rain while Manic Panic hair dye runs down their faces.

2) Crap, this “waterproof” jacket isn’t waterproof. Crap, crap, crap.

3) I like to imagine that early Sunday morning, somewhere in Humboldt Park, there was a guy yelling to his wife from the garage and the conversation went like this:

“Martha! Where’s the box full of umbrella hats?”

“Did you check next to the glow stick necklaces?”

“Yes I checked next to the glow stick necklaces! It was right here, by the inflatable Spider-Man dolls and blinking plastic swords! Damnit, Martha I told you not to move my things…oh wait, I found them! Okay honey, off to work.”

4) At this point beer has become strictly medicinal. Thanks, Dos Equis, for keeping the shakes at bay!

5) There’s something about rain and mud at a festival that brings out the baser instincts in people. Unless the shirtless guy with the bacne covering himself in mud is doing so to fight the Predator.

6) Stop being so damn posi, kids. It’s annoying. I like the Wonder Years as much as the next guy, but I also cannot stand 20 year old kids in crew necks. They’re singing along about how their friends are the only thing they have in life and getting half a stock over the mention of pizza. Yes, we get it. Friends, pizza, stage dives, the word “crucial.” Let me know how that positivity works out for you in 10 years when you’re fully aware that 3 days of carnival food and beer means forgoing a solid bowel movement for the next week.

7) There should be some sort of certificate of achievement for changing pants in a port-a-potty soaked with mud and … let’s just say mud. I really hope it’s just mud. If my feet don’t turn gangrenous in the next few days, this will be a huge win.

8) I think I’ve developed invulnerability to alcohol. Do I have super powers? Is there a Predator nearby? Should I cover myself in mud?

9) If I never send a text message reading “In front of the Ferris Wheel where R U?” I will die a happy man.

10) I never saw butter Stamos. To my eternal shame.

Butter Stamos


Add yours
  1. 1
    Cara Roxanne

    If the smelliness of the five boys (under the age of 22) that stayed at my home this weekend was any indication of what I might have experienced on a mass scale, I feel safer having stayed home.

    Also, when questioned about the most EPIC band performing that weekend? “Ah, man, AFI. TOTALLY.”


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