Since its humble beginnings in 2006, the annual Pitchfork Music Festival has flowered into one of the States’ best events for showcasing the latest and greatest in alternative music. Organized by indie’s spearheaded internet backbone, Pitchfork Media, the 3-day festival—which was headlined by Animal Collective, Fleet Foxes and TV On The Radio in July—now attracts an almighty 50,000 music fans from across 26 countries to Chicago’s Union Park every summer.

This year, Pitchfork Music Festival is set to expand internationally. Between October 28th – 29th, the pioneering event will embark across the Atlantic and touch base in “La Ville-Lumière” – Paris, France.

Pitchfork Paris

The 2-day event is set to take place at La Grande Halle de la Villette, described by Pitchfork as “a stunning 19th century glass and metal structure that stands in the center of the Parc de la Villette, the city’s largest public cultural park”.

The festival boasts one of the most dynamic line-ups of 2011, with over 20 artists—including Bon Iver, whose front man, Justin Vernon, will curate the second day of the festival—and a multitude of DJs set to take to the stage across the weekend spectacular.

Read on to see who SongLyrics considers “must-sees” at the upcoming event, or scroll down to the bottom for full festival details.

Watch on: Friday, October 28th, 2011

The first day of a music festival is always the most animated, as attendees’ energies and excitement run high. Day one of Pitchfork Music Festival Paris will not disappoint such zealous music fans, either, with a sterling roster of artists kicking off this monumental event.

Wild Beasts

Wild Beasts

Wild Beasts—who hail from Kendal in England’s Lake District—are one of the most innovative bands in indie right now. The gaudy troupe effortlessly web eccentric rock—which saunters between 80s minimalism and utter cabaret—lined with antediluvian and sensual lyrics. Be sure to check out the quartet’s front man, Hayden Thorpe, who boasts one of the most trademark falsettos around.

Wild Beasts – Burning by khadunio

Notable lyrics from “Albatross

Albatross, albatross
How callous the ocean you cross?
I, I blame you, I blame you
For all of those things I’ve been through
Don’t feel bad, don’t upend
It’s my neck around which you hang
Like a chain or a tag
I flinch and you fall through the cracks
To the sea and all it bears
The secrets that I should’ve shared

Washed Out

Washed OutBack in July, Ernest Greene’s Washed Out released one of the dreamiest albums of the year thus far, the exquisite Within and Without. While Greene builds similarly wistful soundscapes, Washed Out manages to stand apart from the congested chillwave faction who hide behind their drones of synth and reverb, by instead openly embracing us with his enviable song writing skills.

Washed Out – Eyes Be Closed by Posh Magazine

Notable lyrics from “New Theory

Your choice was right
No chances to be there now
I swear I’m done
You’ll want to leave your path

It’s yours to find
It’s all you’ve ever done
You’re falling down
You’re falling down to us

Real Estate

Real Estate band

Real Estate were scribbling astral-surf music way, way before the beach movement of 2010 even gently lapped against our musical shores. And they were doing it a whole lot better than their future protégés, too! On October 18th, watch out for the psychedelic New Jersey band, who return with Days to remind us all how it’s done.

Real Estate – It’s Real by snipelondon

Notable lyrics from “It’s Real

I carved our names into
A tree
I walked on decomposing
I skated on the frozen
It’s Real as far as I
Can see


Ice Age

Danish punk band, Iceage caused a mighty racket following the release of their debut LP, June’s New Brigade. These mere teenagers injected a well-needed fervor and youth back into the six-strings of punk with tenacious though intriguingly tight songs, cult-like lyrics and blazing trail of heated live performances.

Iceage – White Rune by Pgm_Denmark

Notable lyrics from “White Rune

Across the land
A marching church
Our marching church
It reaches you
Withdraws you

Holds her figure
Like marble

White runes lies in deathbeds
And deathbed writes in white runes
I am
White rune

Four Tet

Four Tet

London’s Kieran Hebden, aka Four Tet, is one of the most dynamic artists in modern-day EDM. His abstract and eclectic compositions continue to bewilder listeners 10+ years into a career which, amongst its decade of achievements, includes the inventing of the ‘folktronica’-genre.

Four Tet – Love Cry by pansen

Notable lyrics from “Angel Echoes

Ouch, I have lost myself again
Lost myself and I am nowhere to be found
Yeah, I think that I might break
Lost myself again and I feel unsafe

Cut Copy

Cut Copy

Cut Copy carry the sunshine all the way from their native Melbourne to Paris this October, and all in the arms of their starry-eyed electro-pop, most-recently honed on Zonoscope, Cut Copy’s February-released LP which offers faultless slice after slice of hooky and contemporary takes on 80s-savoring new wave.

Cut Copy – Need You Now by modularpeople

Notable lyrics from “Need You Now

Hand touches your body now
Lips touch as you’re falling down
Run for the last train
One of them will get you home

I know we’re going crazy,
but I need you now
I know we’re running baby
but I need you now
Need you now
To fight somehow

Aphex Twin [Headliner]

Aphex Twin

One of the most inspiring, albeit controversial artists in contemporary electronic dance music (and I’m talking everything from ambient to acid), Richard David James, better known to us as Aphex Twin, will headline Pitchfork Music Festival Paris on Friday, October 28th. Though James has not released an album since 2001’s Drukqs, this pioneering producer remains potently influential amongst a wide-range of eclectic artists today.

Aphex Twin – Come to Daddy by vociferousslam

Notable lyrics from “Come to Daddy

I want your soul,
I will eat your soul.

Come to daddy.

Watch on: Saturday, October 29th, 2011

Pitchfork close their inaugural international festival with an almighty bang, having entrusted indie’s latest luminary/beard pin-up, Bon Iver’s Justin Vernon, with the role of curating the final day’s entertainment. Check out our favorite artists we selected from Saturday’s Pandora’s box of sonics, below.

Jens Lekman

Jens Lekman

If you needed proof that Sweden continues to act as the epicentre of pop music, then Jens Lekmanis your man. This helpless-romantic somehow formulates the most chipper of tunes despite their habitual lovelorn themes. If sadness is to be found, it is deep within Lekman’s dark and booming vocals, which mirror the idiosyncrasies of Scott Walker or Stephen Merritt. Best of all, Jens comes with an added dose of humor, after all, this witty Scandinavian’s most recent track, “Waiting for Kirsten” (taken from his September-released EP, An Argument With Myself) is about stalking actress, Kirsten Dunst.

Waiting for Kirsten by Jens Lekman

Notable lyrics from “Waiting for Kirsten

We were waiting for Kirsten me and Joel
‘Cause we found out the name of her hotel
With the folköl and an evening paper
In which he spelled out my name letter by letter



Find pastoral paradise with Oxford folk band, Stornoway, and their blissfully delicate and decidedly-British folk. By incorporating strings, brass and keyboards into the otherwise traditional guitar, drum and bass line up, the group manage to layer an authentically rustic ambiance atop their glorious-pop foundations without fuss or façade.

Stornoway – Zorbing by underhisempire2

Notable lyrics from “Zorbing

Conquers shining on the ground
The air is cooler and I feel like I just started uni
Walking backwards to my van, you’re at your window
And I’m tripping every time I think of

Lying in your attic I can feel the static
The storm has broken, heavens open

The Rosebuds

The Rosebuds

Partners, formerly-romantically, nevertheless-musically, Ivan Howard and Kelly Crisp, are the brains behind the dazzling indie-pop of The Rosebuds. Despite the pair’s recent divorce (and consequential professional difficulties), Loud Planes Fly Low, the band’s fifth LP released in June, has been hailed as their most inventive yet.

Vernon’s choice to hire this North Carolina duo for Pitchfork Music Festival Paris is, really rather unsurprising, given the major bromance between him and Howard, both of whom formed part of music side-project, Gayngs, and more recently toured together after The Rosebuds were booked as support for Bon Iver.

The Rosebuds – Woods by One Thirty BPM

Notable lyrics from “Woods

Holding the lights, everyone is burning down the pines
There’s nowhere to hide, everyone out here is so high
Oh, good God!

Kathleen Edwards

Kathleen Edwards

Justin Vernon has invited his sweetheart, Canadian alt-country songstress, Kathleen Edwards, to the Pitchfork Music Festival Paris this October. With a diverse back-catalogue mixing rural, upbeat rock tracks and more quaint acoustic beauties, Edwards’ latest single, the slowly waltzing, delicate folk of “Wapusk”, actually features Bon Iver on backing vocals. Say, is a live duet in order?

Wapusk by Mazloum0

Notable lyrics from “Oh Canada

Oh Canada, I stand on guard for a lot
But just last week a white girl was shot
Outside a shopping mall
Yeah, it’s written in the press
That your sweet little town
Has lost its innocence

Bon Iver [Headliner]

Bon Iver

Undoubtedly, Justin Vernon, aka Bon Iver, is one of the most gifted of individuals in indie right now, evident through his recently released sophomore self-titled LP, an album which shook the alternative world’s foundations with its cinematically sharp-turn from the previous acoustic-twee of debut, For Emma, Forever Ago. Alongside his aforementioned curator role, Vernon will also take to the stage at Pitchfork Music Festival Paris under the Bon Iver moniker, where he is due to close the show in sure music-splendor.

Holocene by bonnier

Notable lyrics from “Holocene

Someway, baby, it’s part of me, apart from me
You’re laying waste to Halloween
You fucked it, friend, it’s on its head, it struck the street
You’re in Milwaukee, off your feet

And at once I knew I was not magnificent
Strayed above the highway aisle
Jagged vacance, thick with ice
I could see for miles, miles, miles 

Pitchfork Music Festival Paris takes place between October 28th to 29th, 2011, at the La Grande Halle de la Villette, Paris.

October 28th: Aphex Twin, Wild Beasts, Washed Out, Real Estate, Iceage, Mondkopf, Four Tet, Erol Alkan, Pantha du Prince, Cut Copy…

October 29th, co-curated by Bon Iver: Bon Iver, Jens Lekman, Kathleen Edwards, Stornoway, The Rosebuds…

The complete program is to be announced in the coming weeks.

Purchase tickets at