The elusive Mazzy Star have a new album release mid 2012, so the band are now out on the road, yay! The band played at Field Day festival, at the same time as headliners Franz Ferdinand on the Eat Your Own Ears main stage. Mazzy played at the Village Mentality tent, and the awaiting crowd and sense of anticipation was a clear indication of their loyal fanbase. The screen projected moody, flickering monochrome images of thunderclouds, a lake surrounded by misty mountains, the shimmer of leaves on trees: atmospheric, moody shots with the fragile quality of someone’s cine film from the 50s.
The band slipped onto the stage silently, wordlessly, in the gloom of a stage where the lights were left dimmed for the entire performance. Hope Sandoval’s voice is still a heartbreaker – soaring, ethereal, the perfect foil for David Roback’s guitar which is as sweet as ever, fluid, bluesy, slidey… The set was the band’s mix of blues-edged ballads, interspersed with their darker, psychedelic swirly, Velvet Underground-tinged numbers, Sandoval’s voice cutting through the mash of guitars with a mesmerising edge, like on So Tonight That I Might See.
I was loathe to give up my place hanging over the barrier at the front of the stage, a speaker stack almost squashed against my left ear, but the drum distortion was almost too much to take and several of the audience members were listening with their fingers in their ears. Ear damage aside, Mazzy Star was my highlight of the festival. New single Common Burn and the dreamy B side Lay Myself Down will keep fans happy till the album arrives.
THE SMALL PRINT
Where: Field Day Festival, Victoria Park, London
When: June 2, 2012