I hate Lollapalooza so much. I hate the ugly-ass CTA ads I have to look at for months before the actual festival, and I hate how the organizers have gone out of their way over the years to make it more and more difficult and physically demanding and slightly insulting for members of the press who are trying to do their jobs and cover the cursed thing (not to mention the poor bastards who actually paid money to be there). Aside from a few memorable headlining sets (Daft Punk, Lady Gaga, and, surprisingly enough considering my usual opinion of them, Pearl Jam) nearly every moment I’ve been there has been terrible. (OK, actually the couple of times I’ve been smuggled into the uber-VIP cabanas were pretty great, but that’s almost completely a matter of the fantastic, veg-friendly catering.)

I even hate writing the Reader‘s annual guide to the clusterfuck, though this year my editors encouraged me to say what I really feel about it, which again is that I think it’s terrible and that I hate it. The guide itself is actually pretty cool, though, with an itinerary assembled by our resident music critics that covers almost every minute of all three days, plus a Spotify playlist of our favorite Lolla artists.

This week’s B Side also has offerings for the smarty-pantses who are opting out of the Grant Park “experience.” We’ve got a list of all the Lollapalooza afterparties that still had tickets available at press time, plus info on the considerably smaller and punker Gnarfest, which is also happening this weekend—there’s more on that in Gossip Wolf, not to mention news on the gear theft suffered by Chicago jazz drummer Frank Rosaly and the first seven-inch by “death-thrash” outfit Zath. For Artist on Artist we set up a conversation between Twin Shadow and local artsy electro-popper Yoko Homo, and there are a whole bunch of non-Lolla-related shows written up on Soundboard, including Shonen Knife, River City Tanlines, Coliseum, and Rufus Wainwright.

Fuck Lollapalooza!