Wild Belle at the Rex 10/23/2013
Photos and Review by Randy Jarosz
Wild Belle made their 2nd appearance in Pittsburgh of 2013 in support of their successful debut album Isles, released this past March. In a short amount of time touring the festival circuit, the band went from playing at the Thunderbird Café in May to Rex Theater Wednesday, October 23.
Wilde Belle is the Chicago duo of siblings Natlaie and Elliot Bergman. Blending reggae, soul and jazz the band has created a unique island feel. The pair brought along touring musicians to fill out the sound, including drums, guitar and bass while Natalie wowed the crowd with her unique gravely vocals, Elliott played keyboard and chipped in occasionally on baritone saxophone.
At the Rex, a jewelry clad Natalie wearing a long black dress, a wide brim floppy hat and a star shaped necklace greeted Pittsburgh and immediately broke into the songs “Twisted,” “It’s Too Late,” and “Backslider,” before stopping to have a quick soundcheck. Taking a sip of Yuengling Natalie took a few minutes to acknowledge the crowd. “Let me tell you about you,” she said. “Last time we played here we played in a smaller venue, which is a beautiful thing,” she continued. “Thank you for filling the room guys, that’s all I have to say,” as a few hundred erupted in cheers at the Rex. She went on to thank the crowd once more for their warm welcome and singing along to the lyrics. Elliot and Natalie traded spots for his turn at lead vocals singing “When It’s Over,” while banging on a tambourine. Wild Belle played 10 of their 11 tracks from Isles and squeezed in the 1981 cover “I’m in Love,” by Evelyn “Champagne” King. Before finishing up the night with the single “Keep You” Natalie invited all to hang out with them after the show.
With their groovy beats and danceable tunes coupled with Natalie’s sultry voice don’t be surprised to see these guys graduate venues one more time to Stage AE. Wild Belle was accompanied by New Jersey band Saint Rich, led by Steve Marion and Christian Peslak of the band Delicate Steve. They were supporting their October release “Beyond the Drone.” See photos from their set below.