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Bloc Party Trade Their Dance Rhythms For Stadium Anthems

August 2, 2008 12:05 AM ET

Bloc Party frontman Kele Okereke looked like he was ready for a very political game of basketball. Dressed in brightly colored shorts, vintage Nikes and a Barack Obama T-shirt with the word "Progress" written on it, Okereke and his band managed to overcome some technical glitches and the absence of bassist Gordon Moakes (he's at home with a new baby) to deliver a set of inspired stadium-sized dance riffs as the Chicago sun set. The band really clicked the new single "Mercury" (where Okereke sampled his own voice) and on the set-closing "Helicopter" (which was greeted as a true anthem). During some down time, Okereke even teased the opening riff of Nirvana's "Heart Shaped Box," which was a knowing nod to Lollapalooza's early-'90s roots.

More Lollapalooza Coverage: Rock 'N' Roll Diary

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Song Stories

“Nightshift”

The Commodores | 1984

The year after soul legends Marvin Gaye and Jackie Wilson died, songwriter Dennis Lambert asked members of the Commodores to give him a tape of ideas. "And the one from Walter Orange has this wonderful bass line," said co-writer Franne Golde. "Plus the lyric, 'Marvin, he was a friend of mine' ... Within 10 minutes, we had decided it should be something like a modern R&B version of 'Rock 'n' Roll Heaven,' and I just said, 'Nightshift.'" This tribute to the recently deceased musicians was the band's only hit without Lionel Richie, who had left for a solo career.

More Song Stories entries »
 
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