Good Heavens, Mazzy Star Returns

Mazzy Star has returned from… from where?  The two new singles they released this week, “Lay Myself Down” and “Common Burn” are so familiar, so perfectly within the tradition in which they once worked that if you were to say these fine songs were emptied from the vaults, we would have believed you.  But Hope Sandoval announces that, after 15 years hiatus, they’re new, and damned if they’re not.

When you think of the all the bands that are currently evoking the folky, ethereal mix that Dave Roback and Hope produced in the ’90s — imagine the Velvet Underground jamming with the Dylan’s Nashville band, Mo Tucker playing tambourine, Sterling Morrison playing pedal steel, as echoes of the Chocolate Watchband emerge from their rehearsal space next door — you might think they’ve returned to claim their throne.  From bands as disparate as the black ryder to the Dum Dum Girls, it’s not like their sound really went away, and we always had Sandoval’s solo albums. But these were missing the glorious tastefulness of Roback’s guitar.  Nothing either has done without the other — not Hope’s cameo role with the Jesus and Mary Chain, not Roback’s Paisley Underground band The Rain Parade — could ever match what they did together.  And now they’re doing it together again.  Happy day.

(Hat tip to Leah Jeffers; we hand’t heard.)

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