Green Stage, Union Park, Chicago IL, July 20

Photo: Ellie Pritts

BY Stephen CarlickPublished Jul 21, 2014

Perhaps it was because the crowd was too young to care, but it seemed too easy to get close to the Green Stage late in the day for Slowdive. On one of their first reunion shows of the year, the English five-piece looked ecstatic to be playing, especially vocalist Rachel Goswell: "We've come all the way from England to be here."

Slowdive were the perfect antidote to the long day of party-centric sets, giving the mosh-pitters a break and the hardcore fans a chance to get their sway on. The band started chill, but the riffs from Pygmalion's "Crazy for You" added necessary muscle, and "Machine Gun" balanced it out with a miasmic comedown, although Goswell's mic could have be higher in the mix to allow it to really soar.

An even spacier "Souvlaki Space Station" than on record as the sun set behind the trees was everything fans could have asked for, and Slowdive carried the momentum into "When the Sun Hits" and "Allison." Live, Neil Halstead's vocals were smooth and velvety, juxtaposing perfectly with the latter's crunchy, larger than life guitars. The ended with a long jam, providing a slow decrescendo to a gorgeous set.

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