Strutting across the stage at Chicago’s Congress Theater like a young Mick Jagger, Juliette Lewis of Juliette and the Licks had her work cut out for her last night (July 18). Playing to a crowd of predominately middle-aged Soundgarden fans waiting for show headliner Chris Cornell, the Hollywood actress-cum-femme rocker Lewis had to pull out all the writhing, jumping and Iggy Pop-ness her petite frame could muster. And that she did for the next 40 minutes, tenfold.
Culling tracks from the band’s forthcoming sophomore long-player, Four on the Floor, the raucous motley crew rummaged through songs such as “Sticky Honey,” “Get Up,” and “Hot Kiss,” finally piquing the interest of elder grunge fans and their younger protégés. And with her trademark feather headband and war paint smeared face, Becky from that Gilbert Grape movie dedicated the new wave-centric riffs of Got Love to Kill to the ladies; “Even the rock’n’rollers like to move their hips from time to time!” she said. Lewis may have postponed a few midlife crisis with her forceful injection of youthful exuberance, because even if their scowls and lackluster appreciation for the band showed otherwise, a few of those Cornell-only kids were left in awe of the Licks’ intoxicating, unquestionable rock show.
We asked: Do you prefer Juliette Lewis the musician or Juliette Lewis the actress?