Hope Sandoval and her Warm Inventions delighted an upscale crowd at the Park West in Chicago Monday night, where a Miller High Life bottle was $5! The opening act, Soledad Brothers, gave me a bothersome headache, as I have created better sounds when accidentally stepping on my cat
Rocky's tail. I didn't really know what to expect from Sandoval, who is best known as one half of Mazzy Star, and since her longtime counterpart David Roback had nothing to do with these new songs or this tour, I wondered if I would like it.
Sandoval came out with an arsenal of instruments that she willfully played throughout the hazy set. She fidgeted through the majority of songs from her solo debut Bavarian Fruit Bread, serving tracks like "Butterfly Mornings" and "On The Low" to her faithful following.
At the beginning of the second number, the audio problems kicked in and slowed down the already turtle-paced performance. Sandoval uncomfortably asked for some cigarettes, and when a weed head tossed a fatty on stage, she gave it to a roadie and requested, "let's save it for after the show." Some dude from the nose bleed seats screamed, "did you get the flowers?" to which Sandoval delightfully replied, "the flowers were amazing, thank you." I thought for a minute that it was Drew Goldberg, but before I could know for sure, another guy screamed "stalker!" which got a huge laugh.
During the set, I couldn't help but feel that Sandoval didn't want to be there. As her trademark heavy vocals gleamed from her throat, she continued to put her hand on her hip as if she was waiting to get back on the tour bus, instead of performing for her fans. She continually switched back and forth from a pair of harmonicas and a flute, and not a Mazzy Star song was heard.
Some artists are better experienced on record. Sandoval is one of them. Her immediate presence and persona might have more texture and effect more people, if they are heard and not seen. An hour of six minute, heroin-esque pitfalls, aren't quite what the doctor would prescribe for a BALLS OUT fucking rickety rock show.
Source: Jason Anfinsen