Little Dragon at Lollapalooza 2012 | Photos and music review
Dressed all in yellow with gold slippers to rival Dorothy's ruby ones, Little Dragon's Yukimi Nagano slid into place in front of the lead mic on Perry's stage for "Looking Glass" and, joined by her band of brothers from Sweden, offered the EDM-dominated area its biggest breath of musical fresh air all weekend.
The title track from the quirky pop band's latest record, Ritual Union, came next, to bombastic cheers. Clearly some in the crowd were ready for a break in the electro monotony that has claimed 90 percent of this stage over the past two days. Beach balls fashioned like globes, blow-up whales, dinosaurs, birthday cakes and, of course, dragons bobbed overhead as Nagano, a force of a frontwoman, acted as spiritual leader—a vocal shaman conjuring bubbly synth pop, extended house jam sessions and all-around sunny grooves.
Standing, pounding, bouncing and bobbing to their eclectic sound, the members—save the drummer, who's glued to a dubwise drum set—seem to all have a little skip dance that they've adopted as the dominant footwork. As a cow bell and drum solo morphed into an extend house jam session on "Precious," the stage lit up with this slinky little move. At the end of the day, Little Dragon might be a little heady for many. The Ray-Ban-clad masses came to bathe in sound waves of neon beats, after all, but this band knows how to own the stage nonetheless, winning over fans one shimmering pop-dance beat at a time.