REVIEW: First Riot Fest For The Books


Another year of Riot Fest came to a close on September 16th. Being a first-time attendee, the festival beat my expectations.


Starting off the weekend with a late night show, State Champs killed it at the Bottom Lounge. It felt like seeing them all over again on their first headlining tour with Handguns in 2014. Lead singer Derek DiScanio jammed along with crowd by belting "Perfect Score" lyrics, "Always the last to fall asleep/Always with a dream in mind/Carried the weight, but honestly/I still got left behind" creating a sense of unity among SC fans.

SWMRS gave Riot Fest the most high-energy set of their jammed packed festival weekend. Acknowledging the Chicago hotel workers strike, lead vocalist, Cole Becker, sang their new single "Berkeley's On Fire" with the lyrics "Berkeley's on fire/Your TV lies/We'll be alright." As always, SWMRS reminds the crowd that it is okay to be uncool with the track "Uncool" from their 2016 Drive North record.


Ending the weekend with The Wonder Years, lead vocalist, Dan "Soupy" Campbell told the crowd that "it may be his favorite show of all time." Starting off their new album's title track, "Sister Cities," staged the high-energy tone for the hour long set. "Pyramids of Salt" and "Came Out Swinging" was the perfect end to Riot Fest. The crowd will never forget Campbell singing the lyrics "I spent the winter writing songs about getting better/And if I'm being honest, I'm getting there."


Did you go to Riot Fest this year? Be sure to let us know!

Contact us at: Roarreports@gmail.com