Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Hurts--"Happiness" Album Review

Hailed as the new Pet Shop Boys, UK duo Hurts debut “Happiness” is not a stomping dance music album but a sophisticated electronica soundtrack, think Depeche Mode which they channel on the single “Better Than Love”. From the opener “Silver Lining” to the beautiful orchestrated ending track “Water” they deliver a delightful atmospheric sound with emotional lyrics and pretty melodies reminiscent of the 80's new wave movement. The dark but hopeful “Wonderful Life” reminiscent of the Jimmy Stuart X-Mas film has a character contemplating suicide; the track is without a doubt one of the best singles of the year. "Blood Tears & Gold" channels a bit of Erasure, while the track "Sunday" leans on U2. The album never gets boring with the gospel tinged choired “Stay” and "Devotion" which features pop princess Kylie Minogue. Lead singer Theo Hutchcraft’s vocals are glorious and soar on tracks like "Evelyn" and "Water". Their music isn't as sweet, dance-able or happy as the likes of
Ke$ha, Katy Perry or Lady GaGa but it's well crafted and sophisticated which will unfortunately will keep them off the radio in North America.

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