Radiohead plays polished gem at Chicago festival

Fri Aug 1, 2008 11:21pm EDT
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By Ros Krasny

CHICAGO (Reuters) - British art rock sensations Radiohead played a gem-like performance on the Chicago lakefront on Friday, headlining the first night of the three-day Lollapalooza music festival.

"They sound extremely polished," said fan Arynne Gilbert, 28, from Chicago, as the band went through a two-hour, 24-song set that included "Fake Plastic Trees," and "Paranoid Android."

Lollapalooza is billed as the largest alternative music festival in the United States, a midsummer ultra-marathon of music, street food, beer and sweat.

A sell-out crowd of about 75,000 watched the five-piece ensemble from Oxfordshire, accompanied by a spectacular video and light show as darkness fell over the Windy City

Bass guitarist Colin Greenwood gave a nod to the host city, wearing a Chicago Transit Authority T-shirt.

Radiohead, which released its first single in 1992, has been this year's hot ticket as it tours in support of the critically acclaimed 2007 release "In Rainbows."

The band famously sold downloads of the disk for whatever price customers chose, including for free. Recently Radiohead has led an MTV campaign against sweatshop labor and human trafficking.

"They have a lot of good energy," said Katrina Ordonez, 28, who is studying acupuncture in Beijing.   Continued...

<p>Thom Yorke, lead singer of Radiohead, performs on stage during their concert at the Rock-en-Seine Festival in Saint-Cloud, near Paris, August 26, 2006. REUTERS/Benoit Tessier</p>