T.T. the Bears
November 15, 2011
It’s been over two years seen I’ve seen Hurt perform live. Too long. By the time we arrived at T.T. the Bears in Cambridge a pretty good sized crowd was already assembled, a full hour-and-a-half before Hurt was due to begin their set. Visiting with the band briefly before the show I immediately sensed something was a bit different now. The guys seem more collected and relaxed than ever, but more importantly, very enthusiastic and optimistic about what the future holds for the band.
When we came out from backstage, the venue was packed and the crowd was giving opening act Prospect Hill a warm response. When Hurt took the stage, the crowd erupted in cheers and applause. Everything I sensed while talking to the band before the show presented itself onstage. Call it chemistry or simpatico, the guys played so well together, maybe better than ever.
The crowd was loud, but in a good way, singing along to every word of every song. Every word. What makes the crowd attendance and participation even more spectacular are the facts that before tonight Hurt hasn’t playing in the Boston area since 2008, and radio support has been sparse to non-existent. And still they came, and showed Hurt their appreciation in the best way they could.
You could see the impact of the crowd response in faces of the band members. You could hear the connection between the members in the music. One of the most powerful events of the night came during the performance of “Aftermath,” when Hurt practically hypnotized the boisterous crowd into such a silence that you could almost hear a pin drop (or at least the techno music blasting downstairs). The crowd was completely engaged and mesmerized.
I’ve been to dozens of Hurt shows over the past several years, and this show in Boston may be the best one yet. Before the show J. Loren said to me “If we play for two years together the way we’re playing, we’ll be sounding like a band that’s been playing together for thirty years, and of that I’m very proud.” I can’t wait to see and hear how this new vitality presents itself on their upcoming album, The Crux. I’m certain everyone at the show feels the same.
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