Concert Review: Mazzy Star, November 16, Danforth Music Hall


You could tell that anticipation was high for Mazzy Star‘s show at The Danforth Music Hall.  After all, with the band being on hiatus since 1997, many in attendance had probably resigned themselves to never seeing the band live.  But, much like every band that has ever existed, the core duo of Hope Sandoval and David Roback have indeed reunited and the anticipation turned into a sort of hushed reverence for the band for the duration of their set.  The audience was by and large so quiet that one could hear a pin drop … or a can of beer being opened, which actually happened when one patron went to the bar during a particularly quiet song.

The band played in near darkness, with minimal lighting onstage, some of it provided by candlelight.  They sounded great, with Sandoval’s strong voice and Roback’s signature  guitar tones coming together perfectly, and the band did play several off of my favourite Mazzy Star release, 1996’s Among My Swan, yet as far as the live perfomance itself, they don’t really do a whole lot onstage.  I could have achieved a similar effect had I just stayed home, lit a few candles, and stared at the shadows on the wall.

As is becoming more common with a certain segment of performers these days, the band instituted a strict no camera/no cellphone policy during the show, yet unlike with some other shows (particularly that She & Him set at this past summer’s TURF fest), I didn’t really sense the same sort of moral outrage from people who feel the need to take blurry pics and post them immediately to Instragram.  Probably most were too engrossed in watching the band play and really it’s not that big of a deal anyways.  You don’t really need that picture and it’s probably gonna suck anyways.

Where I did surprisingly see some misplaced moral outrage was amongst the few concert douchebags who felt the need to talk continuously during Mazzy Star’s set.  Look, I’m not saying you don’t have the right to talk at all during a show, but when everyone else is being so silent, you should realize that people can actually hear you talking and you should probably keep in mind that they’re being quiet because they really want to hear the band.  And maybe also don’t give the finger to the people sitting in front of you when they finally give up and just walk away because you’re talking about where to go for drinks after the show, which I saw one woman do to the exasperated folks sitting in front of her.  After the band finished their second encore (and before launching in to their third!), I walked by the aforementioned bird flipper and her friend, paused behind them, said, “You’re the worst” and kept walking.  I have no idea if she heard and don’t really care if she did, but I felt it needed to be said.  I’m sure Hope Sandoval would back me up on this.

Posted on by Paul in Concerts

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