Apologies for the crappy phone-cam photo!
Y’know, this will be the first ever live review on electronic rumors, I always feel like I should (and I’m going to do more) but when I’m out, I just kinda’ like to live it up, drink the bar dry and have an awesome time dancing to some amazing music and not worrying what I might say about it on a website!
HURTS felt like more of an ‘event’ though, so here you go, have some words! I caught them live last night here in Bristol on one of the early dates of the NME Radar Tour (along with the abysmal Darwin Deez and the disappointingly average Everything Everything) and, for me at least, anticipation was high.
‘Presence’ is probably the best word to describe HURTS live. For two guys (and three backing band (keyboard player, drummer and opera singer!)) who don’t move around very much they do seem to fill up the stage. One thing I was concerned about was how po-faced and pretentious they were going to be, as that would kinda’ annoy me, but I was surprised at how much of a good time the guys seemed to be having onstage. Yes, the sometimes tortured, sometimes apathetic persona is there in singer Theo Hutchcraft but occasionally you’ll catch a playful smile cross his face, or even an outright grin as the crowd sing the lyrics back to him.
The set was everything I had hoped, most of the EP tracks were played, opening with ‘Silver Lining’. ‘Unspoken’ was pretty perfect, and the set climaxed in a roof raising performance of the forthcoming single ‘Better Than Love’. Interestingly, in his introduction to their breakthrough hit ‘Wonderful Life’ Theo confirmed our suspicions that the song was indeed written about our fair city (there are a few obscure references to places in Bristol in the lyrics) which endeared the crowd to them more.
All in all, awesome! One of the best gigs I have been to in a while, a band hasn’t impressed me this much live since the first time I saw CHEW LiPS!
If you get the chance, definitely see HURTS live, especially if you can catch them early on in their career in some intimate venue.
Check the Fred Falke reMix of ‘Unspoken’:
‘Better Than Love’ drops on the 24th.