Review: A Unique and Heartfelt Night with Horsegirl & Wilco

Is there anything more Chicago than a Wilco show?

Last weekend, Chicago indie icons Wilco sold out The Riv for three nights, promising fans a completely unique setlist each night. There would be zero repeats, which guaranteed at least a few deep cuts from their discography. There are more than a few die hard Wilco fans in the crowd who purchased tickets to all three nights, and there were those who gambled on a single night in hopes of hearing one of their favorite songs.

Chicago girl group Horsegirl opened for Wilco each night, and they were an amazing addition to the lineup. The three-piece indie rock group gave off a quiet shoegaze vibe, leaving the crowd excited to hear more after each song. Despite the band being fairly new (they released their debut album, Visions of Modern Performance in 2022), Horsegirl is a band that has clearly established their sound and style. They thanked Wilco several times for inviting them to open the show, and it’s clear that they’re on their way to becoming a great Chicago band.

When Wilco took the stage, there was an almost audible gasp from The Riv. Despite having nearly 30 years under their belt, Wilco is still the kind of band that makes their fans gasp with glee. Jeff Tweedy started the set by singing “Misunderstood”, a song from their 1996 album Being There that isn’t played very often. Right off the bat, their fans knew that this was going to a night of unforgettable music. Surprisingly, Wilco played one of their most iconic songs almost immediately. Their third song of the night, “I am Trying to Break Your Heart” is easily one of their most recognizable and is off their most recognizable album, Yankee Hotel Foxtrot

Each night at The Riv gave fans a completely different feel thanks to those entirely different setlists, but one thing is clear: Wilco are universally adored by their fans. Despite touring all across the globe throughout the year, Wilco always makes time for their hometown fanbase in a unique and heartfelt way. We can’t wait to see their next iconic performance here in Chicago.

All photos by Kate Scott Daly

Kate Scott
Kate Scott

Kate Scott Daly specializes in music journalism. Her body of work includes live documenting over 200 bands, reviewing several albums and concerts, and multiple artist interviews. Kate continues to brave the photo pits of major music venues and outdoor festivals throughout the Chicagoland scene.