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Review: Hurts at Espoon Viinijuhlat

Against all odds – Hurts is back


Espoon Vine festival, July 28 2023


It’s been a couple of days since the Manchester synth-pop duo Hurts finalized their – under the radar - comeback tour. They started in Moldova and played the last shows in Finland while headlining Espoo and Kokkolan vine festival.


Why was it so mysterious then? With the fans believing they’ve seen the last of Hurts, the band announced their fifth album during the pandemic. A lot was different compared to the release of Desire 2017. They went back to their roots. To the raw emotions even deeper than before, the melodies were both darker and more powerful with similarities to their first albums Happiness and Exile. They explained that they were forced to dig deep to complete the album, and that they also were longing to meet the fans. Not far after the release they announced a world tour. But due to personal circumstances and the situation after the pandemic the tour suddenly got canceled. And without further explanation the band disappeared again.


But like an old good boxer Hurts bounced back. During the spring they once again announced a tour. And this time they showed up. In odd places they’ve been playing 11 shows at festivals this summer. Not odd in the selection of countries, but there is a feeling they have carefully picked out festivals at smaller venues close to their fans. The last stop in Finland was as mentioned above a vine festival and the duo was the only international act.


I was at the second to last show in Espoo. They performed a well rehearsed setlist. They entered the stage performing White Horses from Faith. As many of Hurts most beloved songs it is a lyric written as a tale and the fans seemed to love it. As it was a festival the set was tight. Theo Hutchcrafts voice reached the first high note while singing Rolling Stones and at the eighth song Sandman they captured the whole audience in their arms, including those exploring the multiple drink offers in the back.


After the last tone of Nothing Will Be Bigger Than Us the singer paused and explained how grateful they were to be back, while also revealing they been having doubts if they ever would be able to perform live again. After that brief talk they played Darkest Hour from their latest album.


As always they ended it all with Stay. Leaving the crowd with only one feeling – I think they wanted more. Hurts are made for larger locations and bigger shows, and when they are ready I think they will be able to fill them. But for now I think that fans will just have to rest in the fact that Hurts are finally back.


Setlist

  1. White Horses

  2. Some Kind of Heaven

  3. Ready to Go

  4. Miracle

  5. Rolling Stone

  6. Somebody to Die For

  7. Voices

  8. Sandman

  9. Suffer

  10. Silver Lining

  11. Wonderful Life

  12. Wings

  13. Better Than Love

  14. Nothing Will Be Bigger Than Us

  15. Darkest Hour

Encore

  1. Under Control

  2. Stay


By: Josefin Johansson jossanskriver@gmail.com

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