Two Songs by Brightside – Review
Review by Dustin Butoryak
Growing up, pop music always seemed for me this holy amalgamation of infectious and oftentimes obnoxiously catchy melodies paired with recklessly swollen celebrity egos. When I started exposing myself to music that was considered by my friends to be less mainstream and more ‘respectable’, I turned my back on the mere idea of pop music and jumped headfirst into my obligatory high school scene phase (something that, in retrospect, wasn’t really an escape from popular mainstream music at all.)
Brightside is the band that would have kept that eighth grader from frying his eardrums with “Best of Warped Tour ’06” for two years. Fusing bright, funky guitar/bass melodies with confident drums and Matt Vituccio’s whiny sighing croon, “Two Songs” elaborates on their 2015 release “The World Reversed” in displaying everything pop music can and should be. “Is This Real Life?” is a fun, thumping romp that stumbles through periods of uncertainty and determination. The music does an excellent job of flowing with the lyrical tone of the song, Vituccio singing: “Tried doing it alone/Something takes me over takes me out/Sets me right back/and I’m fine, that’s just how it goes”.
“Speedball” (originally titled “Song 2 by Blur,” and renamed for legal reasons) is a pulsating ball of restrained energy from start to finish. The complex chord structures and surging drum line set a perfect stage for Vituccio’s pondering voice to soar over. You don’t expect the launch from muted pre-chorus into the hypnotizing refrain, Vituccio singing “Would you take this back/in knowing I had?/From knowing my name/would you take this back?”.
Brightside has been pushing their boundaries as a band and upping the ante with each new release, as well as helping to keep pop relevant in the Pittsburgh scene alongside other local artists like Jack Stauber and Wreck Loose. With their 3rd full length album on the horizon, Brightside is in a position to truly shine and continue to raise the profile of Pittsburgh pop music.
You can follow Dustin on Instagram @duhster .This review was edited by John Wright of the WPTS Editorial Staff.