A fair amount of popular music is devoted to slapping a spotlight on a young, pouting girl while she struts confidently, singing in implicit tones of seduction at an audience that feels, probably, like they are leering more than listening.
This image obviously always asserts “sex” whether it’s plastered on an album cover, cut up into nano seconds for a music video or put on grand display in concert. The perception of fleeting desire is extremely easy to nail, the sound of fleeting desire, however, is an entirely different beast.
Pittsburgh band Big Hurry have managed to bottle up the reverberating vibes of temptation and cram it into a mysterious and exciting package. Syrupy bass lines, drums black as tar and a glittering vein of synth run through their songs with a slow and engulfing fury.
Their sumptuous sound fell across the Brillobox’s second floor last Wednesday night like ink spreading out over cloth as lead singer Kelly Tobias’ voice changed gears on dime. With every verse, Tobias seemed to be giving the audience a tour of her range, traversing the scales with ease, hitting notes higher than expected and returning gracefully to the ground. Throw in guitars that hustled with a swagger worthy of The Rapture’s Echoes and you have quite the simmering pot of intrigue.
“Save your breath for my mouth and stop all those bitter words,” Tobias sang on the dance floor burner “Save Your Breath” which oozed with a type of seduction that is so frequently and easily feigned. But even as this lush moment of intimacy is realized, Tobias allows it (she is calling the shots by the way) to evaporate like steam, “remember this one night she said, our lies sting and burn.”
The raging tantrum of “Found Out” began with drums being plumbed from the depths of reverb, only to snap into clarity with a Zeppelin like menace. Its beat is slower than “Save Your Breath” but has more purpose, with churning guitars and bass mutating into a hypnotic march. Both songs howl, scratch and groove, leaving little room for contemplation or rational thought. This music intuits the patterns of passion, celebrating impulse as cathartic release. This is not the illusion of seduction, it is the document.
You can’t help but appreciate how Big Hurry allow pleasure and pain to coexist so closely within their songs, knowing very well that temptation is best when its unstable, prone to smokey disappearing acts on a nightly basis. It was exhilarating to hear this kind of hotness remain potent even after their show had ended. Between “Save Your Breath” and the absolute stomping glory of “Found Out,” Big Hurry have carved out a sound that vibrates at the frequencies of desire, tapping the listener to remember those things they know they shouldn’t want, but crave nonetheless. They have now left me intrigued as to where they will go from here, I will be eagerly awaiting their next move, anxious to see if they can keep the heat cranked up over the course of an entire album.