Juliette Lewis came out swinging at The Fonda Thursday night, and she never stopped.

Based solely on her diverse, colorful roles in feature films over the years (Natural Born Killers, From Dusk Till Dawn, The Other Sister, etc.), you’d never think this girl could rock out like a fusion of Janis Joplin and Steven Tyler, but, boy, does she ever. She even channeled some Robert Plant. You could feel her raw, deep voice in every inch of the venue. It was impressive.

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All photos by Lesley Park

Juliette personified the leadership role in an American rock band. I was pleasantly surprised by the high energy of her and her stellar crew. The harmonies, breakdowns, and solos were perfect. Elmo Lovano held down the grooves on his kit while John Michael Anderson shredded the most tasteful shred. Juan Alderete (The Mars Volta, Racer X) sang beautiful harmonies and rocked that bass like only a member of The Mars Volta could.

Juliette Lewis’ interactions with the audience were fun and sincere. It felt like she got into rock and roll for all the right reasons and really decided to own it. She is a solid (and very successful) actress, yes, but damn, the girl is also a GREAT rock star. She had sing-alongs, she crowd-surfed, she vented about the world to the audience, she asked questions…it was exactly what the attendees wanted.

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Lewis’ boyfriend (and sometimes drummer) Brad Wilk, of, oh, you know, Rage Against The Machine, came out and played a few tunes on drums with his lady. It was sweet, and he is clearly a musical force to be reckoned with.

The voice that comes belting out from that tiny body is nothing short of rousing. Juliette Lewis is sweet and nice, but she transforms into a punk-rocking juggernaut while leading the stage. Her fans love her, and I can see why. The show was non-stop energy and held my attention from beginning to end. Not bad, guys. Not bad at all.

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Juliette Lewis