When the Gigolo Aunts opened for the Counting Crows at the 9:30 Club Oct. 28, most of the crowd was there to see Adam Duritz and his crew. But if audience members opened their ears during the Gigolo Aunts’ set, they got a pleasant surprise.
It’s hard to say what makes a normal pop band rocket to stardom and manage to stay there. One-hit wonders are more prevalent than girls in tight black pants on GW’s campus. Listening to Gigolo Aunts’ most recent release, Minor Chords, Major Themes (E Puribus Unum), you know that the group has staying power – the band just needs to get that one hit first.
But it will be hard for the Gigolo Aunts to get that one hit because on the surface the group is a typical pop band. The small nuances that set the group apart become apparent after listening to the album a few times.
Catchy, toe-tapping tunes characterize the album. Everyone Can Fly takes a softer approach to the classic pop tune. The soothing vocals combine with a rat-a-tat beat and a singsong melody for a memorable song.
The distant, angst-filled vocals and slow rhythm make You’d Better Get Yourself Together, Baby a sweet love ballad. The song was featured on an episode of Felicity, and with one listen you’ll know why. It’s perfect for the background music of a touching scene.
The Big Lie takes a harsher, rock approach with strong percussion and a driving guitar. The Counting Crows’ Duritz makes a guest appearance on this song. Duritz is a big fan of Gigolo Aunts and is responsible for signing them to the E Pluribus Unum label.
The final track, Residue, is led by a simple guitar melody. Band member Steve Hurley, who sings and plays bass on the album, has a soft voice that floats above the strumming guitar. He sings, I wish that I could face all the flavors I stil taste/I wish that I could peel off all the layers that I feel. The song manages to be simultaneously catchy and soothing.
Although the Gigolo Aunts has typical pop sounds, the group has much more. The band produces a variety of sounds on Minor Chords, Major Themes. From slow to fast, love song to dance hit, the album has it all. It’s multifaceted, and so are the Gigolo Aunts. Seeing the group live in concert, you can tell the band members are into their music. During the concert Duritz said the group is just one hit away from making it big. He’s right.