Archive for Sunday, June 11, 2006

Norway’s Hurra Torpedo plays everything but the kitchen sink

June 11, 2006

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Hurra Torpedo just added a new instrument to its repertoire.

It's a vertical two-door refrigerator which, when bashed with a bicycle seat, should have a nice ring to it.

Band member Egil Hegerberg says he normally prefers the deep freezer, which is easier to play and has a deeper boom. But this might do.

"We have never played on a fridge before," Hegerberg says. "That's very exciting for us."

The Norwegian band is fresh from a used appliance store in Boston, where it acquired a few other "instruments" for an upcoming U.S. tour. Purchases include three stoves, two washing machines, a dryer and the fridge.

If you haven't noticed yet, Hurra Torpedo has a bizarre stage show. Smashing kitchen appliances is its idea of percussion. Band members Hegerberg, Aslag Guttormsgaard and Kristopher Schau trade off guitar, bass, vocals and appliances. They have to, because clanging a stovetop with a Norwegian wheel is hard work.

Occasionally, at high altitudes, the bandmates get out of breath and have to stop the show. Luckily for Hurra Torpedo and its insatiable fans, Kansas is flat.

Norway's Hurra Torpedo will play its unique brand of kitchen appliance-driven music at midnight today in the Revival Tent.

Norway's Hurra Torpedo will play its unique brand of kitchen appliance-driven music at midnight today in the Revival Tent.

Strangely, Hurra Torpedo is best known for its 1995 cover of Bonnie Tyler's "Total Eclipse of the Heart." A performance of that song, stove-smashing and all, only recently found its way onto the Internet. Since then, the trio has enjoyed a stateside cult following that scored it a real U.S. tour. Hegerberg says the shows have so far been "excellent."

"We blow them away. They get very excited," he says.

"Often we have to escape the town because the girls and boys are absolutely wild."

Hurra Torpedo fans who love "Total Eclipse of the Heart" are sure to dig the band's latest covers. Hegerberg, Guttormsgaard and Schau will hammer out Britney Spears' "Toxic" as well as T.A.T.U.'s "All the Things She Said" on stoves that get replaced after each show.

They also will play original material from their new album, "Kollossus of Makedonia." The album hasn't been released in the U.S., but the band brought a few copies along.

"That will be a great opportunity for people to get their hands - their filthy American hands - on a Hurra Torpedo CD. It's got lots of songs on it," Hegerberg says.

Though it all seems a bit, well, gimmicky, Hurra Torpedo is very serious about its music - not to mention confident.

"I've done this millions of times," Hegerberg says, "and I'm never nervous because I know we're the best kitchen appliance rock show on Earth."

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