Everybody loves summer in Chicago but the truth is that for music, fall festivals and food and beer events, fall is really when things heat up. There's already so much to in September alone, then tons of holiday cheer to be had with Oktoberfest, Halloween and Thanksgiving. Make sure with all of the things to in Chicago in fall you squeeze in these six can't miss music events.
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The best fall music events in Chicago
Relocated to the sprawling Douglas Park on the city's South Side, replete with circus attractions, Riot Fest prides itself on being punk. It's bookings are as diverse as "punk" is difficult to define. There's mall-punk, hardcore, emo, goth, metal, thrash, new-wave, rap, gray-haired indie and sometimes Blondie. This year, No Doubt reunites to top the bill, joined by Modest Mouse, Faith No More, Iggy Pop and... Snoop Dog? Sure, whatever. There's something for every former '90s mallrat. Check out our complete coverage of Riot Fest.
Globe-trot through music at this free, citywide fest, featuring artists from around the world. Highlights from this year's lineup include performances by North Indian brass band Red Baraat (Sept 12), Brazilian percussionist Cyro Baptista (Sept 12), desert rockers Terakaft (Sept 13) and Afrobeat legend Orlando Julius (Sept 18, 19). For a full schedule of concerts, check out the festival's website.
Stereolab went on indefinite hiatus in 2009, but lead vocalist Laetitia Sadier has maintained a prolific solo career in the ensuing years. Her latest, Something Shines, is a shimmering collection of understated pop songs, overseen by the French musician's unmistakable voice. Former Dirty Projectors collaborator Angel Deradoorian opens the show, sharing tunes from her debut solo LP The Expanding Flower Planet.
Recalling Prince and Grace Jones, androgynous singer-songwriter Shamir Balley's dance-pop debut Rachet showcases his versatile voice and a fun-loving attitude. Balley is a Las Vegas native, so the glitzy electro sound make sense, but the unabashed honesty that is filtered through the buoyant beats makes his songs all the more interesting.
On Stuff Like That There, indie-rock cornerstone Yo La Tengo reimagines tracks from its deep catalog and throws in covers of tunes by Hank Williams and the Cure for good measure. A country-tinged revamp of classic track "Deeper Into the Movies" shows that the veteran band is still searching, refusing to coast on what it already has figured out. At this special acoustic gig, the New Jersey band will be joined by its former lead guitarist, Dave Schramm.