Katy Hurt is back with new music, and it expresses much of what we’ve been through over the last 18 months. ‘Face to Face’ is an ode to that universal feeling of separation and need for connection that we’ve all experienced, in different ways, throughout the pandemic. The line “We’re supposed to be closer than ever before / but somehow we’re further away” is a beautiful summary of the tension between hardship and hope; of being grateful for the technology to keep in touch but longing for that physical contact that cannot be replaced. You can feel the emotional pull as Katy sings so poignantly about a desire to see family, friends and fans again, against a backdrop of nostalgia-fuelled instrumentation. It is baptism by full immersion into traditional country music with a 1940s Vera Lynn touch.
The opening thirty seconds of gentle acoustic guitar, the introduction of gramophone-evoking vocals, and the gradual fade out at the end make it feel like a journey through an old technicolor movie soundtrack. Not to say that there isn’t a contemporary feel a la Kacey Musgraves, with the delicacy of ‘Dandelion’ and the atmosphere of ‘Golden Hour’ coming through. As such, ‘Face to Face’ is escapist without being escapism. It is a track with lyrics that are relatable and music that is otherworldly. Katy Hurt once again manages to surprise and delight with music that touches the heart even as it takes you out of yourself. Another tender tune from this shining star.
Originally written for and published on Belles & Gals on August 25th 2021.
Featured Image (C) Katy Hurt