Rolling Stone‘s Rock Room party on Saturday helped revitalize Lollapalooza’s tired and waterlogged attendees with sets from Bombay Bicycle Club, Yellow Ostrich and Women Who Rock contest finalists Rita Ora and Karmin. The amenities at the Studio Paris club weren’t too shabby, either – free mojitos, burgers and a fresh oyster bar.
“This show is different than any other show we’ve played, just with the never-ending stream of waiters offering you milk and cookies or vodka,” Yellow Ostrich frontman Alex Schaaf told Rolling Stone after his band’s set. “It’s a very eclectic mix of food options.”
Yellow Ostrich delivered a rousing rock set despite their fatigue from their Lollapalooza show the day before. “The stage was in full sunlight,” he says. “I almost fainted by the end, it was so hot.” By the end of his performance, the Wisconsin native had realized something about himself. “I was like, ‘Wait, I have to work out more just so I can play 40 minutes of music,'” he admitted, laughing. Fittingly, the band closed out the set with their echoing track “Marathon Runner.”
At the Rock Room, Rita Ora was up for trying something new, so the Jay-Z protégé performed an unplugged set. “It’s only the second time we’ve played this way,” she told Rolling Stone of the acoustic approach to her usually club-friendly pop songs. Her dynamic vocals were on full display on her radio-friendly single “How We Do (Party).”
YouTube sensations Karmin, comprised of Amy Heidemann and Nick Louis, charmed the crowd with tales of their humble beginnings; in the past year, the band went from being unemployed to having their song “Brokenhearted” go platinum, thanks to their unique covers going viral. As they also explained, their latest original track, “Hello,” was subconsciously inspired by Nirvana’s “Smells Like Teen Spirit.”
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“No one heard Nirvana,” said Louis of the band’s first listen to the chorus. “I think I was one of the first people who was like, ‘Why does this sound so familiar?'”
The jangling British rockers Bombay Bicycle Club closed the Rock Room with their bouncy, piano-driven track “Shuffle.” It had the entire audience, from fans to bartenders, bouncing in place to the punchy beat. Revelers left rejuvenated, ready to battle the elements at the second day of the festival.