Will UK pop duo Hurts have what it takes to wrap David around their little fingers in his review of their new album ‘Desire’?
If ever there were a band that I wish would continuously release music, it’s Hurts.
They are amongst the most underrated bands out of the UK with their penchant for anthemic pop tunes. And while their popularity in the UK may have faltered somewhat, they have a huge following across Europe and into Russia; even rock star Bryan Adams is a fan.
Back with their fourth studio album, ‘Desire’, Theo and Adam take us on a more passionate journey than previous releases.
‘Desire’ showcases a far sexier, slinky and introspective sound compared to previous releases.
Throughout the album, the bass line sounds heavily influenced by musicians like Nile Rodgers or George Michael with the level of funkiness that comes through. It’s an interesting shift in direction and I can’t see the massive crowds they normally play to going off to songs like ‘Chaperone’.
Having said that, the Hurts I’ve come to love and adore haven’t totally disappeared.
Lead single ‘Beautiful Ones’ is one of my favourite songs from this album. From its production to its lyrics and lead singer Theo Hutchcraft’s delivery, it’s a perfect pop tune.
Hurts are always good at pulling together lush arrangements that sound so full you are constantly hearing different elements after each listen.
Also a surprise to see is former reality TV star David Sneddon appearing on writing credits on this song and a few others on the album. (If you don’t know who he is, look up one of his own songs like ‘Baby Get Higher’ or ‘Don’t Let Go’… i.e. he’s a very strong songwriter and it’s pleasure to see more of his collaborations appear here).
Hurts’ best creations are songs that engage a live audience. While we see a more seductive collection of tracks overall, there are still songs that are catchy and will be great live.
‘Ready To Go’ is a full on pop banger with some interesting tropical house references (without sounding like it’s chasing a trend).
‘Wherever You Go’ is a great contrast to some of their more upbeat songs; it sounds great cruising down the highway or while you’re making dinner.
Album closer ‘Magnificent’ is a beautiful song which builds as you listen to it.
By its final quarter, you’re immersed in an incredible arrangement of strings, backing vocalists and a loving message about the beauty of love (without sounding schmaltzy). It’s a great closer.
With each and every album they release, Hurts continue to build a strong back catalogue of music which I still enjoy to this day. Their music hasn’t dated and continues to impress.
And ‘Desire’ is a worthy addition to their back catalogue.
VERDICT : 4/5.
MUST LISTEN : Beautiful Ones, Something I Need To Know, Magnificent.