Monday, October 11, 2010

40. Hurts - Better Than Love

20.10 ArD Sept & Oct Playlist

International Playlist

40. Hurts - Better Than Love

Who are they??

Hurts are a British synthpop duo from Manchester composed of singer Theo Hutchcraft, (From Richmond, North Yorkshire), and synth player Adam Anderson.

In July 2009, the band featured as "Band of the Day" on They finished in fourth position in BBC's Sound of 2010 poll. The band's song "Wonderful Life" was notably remixed by Arthur Baker. In early 2010 they officially released their debut single, "Better Than Love", and played their first ever live shows. The song "Illuminated" also was the soundtrack to Sky1 HD's advert to promote their best-watched seasonal programmes in High Definition (Bones, House, Fringe) in spring/summer 2010. Their debut album called Happiness was released on 6 September 2010. It contains a duet with Kylie Minogue entitled "Devotion".

To promote the release of their debut album, the band collaborated with author Joe Stretch to produce an interactive audio book narrated by Anna Friel. It is found on the online music player Spotify, with the first entry being found by searching for "a5m4". Before Hurts, singer Theo and synthesiser player Adam were previously in bands named The Bureau, later to be renamed Daggers. In September 2010 it was announced their UK tour was sold out, and that Hurts would support Scissor Sisters on their UK tour later this year.

Happiness & The Critics

Happiness received mixed reviews from music critics. It debuted at number four on the UK Albums Chart and topped the Greek Albums Chart. The album peaked at number two in Austria, Germany, Poland and Switzerland. It also peaked within the top ten in Denmark, Finland, Ireland and Sweden.

Gaining avarage Metacritic score of 58. Alexis Petridis from The Guardian gave the album two out of five stars and wrote, "You get the feeling Hurts have spent more time making their backstory interesting than their music", and that on some tracks lead singer Hutchcraft sounds like "one of those puppets that advertises Dolmio, but in the throes of a romantic crisis".

Dorian Lynskey of Q magazine also gave a mixed review, stating that the duo "learn all the wrong lessons from the 80s" and calling the album "a depressingly ordinary package of overblown melodies and musty lyrical cliches [...], expensively ribboned with choirs and orchestras.

Teddy Jamieson of The Herald noticed that the band has "an ear for a hook, but Happiness feels very synthetic (and not in a fun, sci-fi way)" and that "beneath the synthy exterior lurk orthodox song structures, big choruses and a join-every-dot desperation for pop stardom", however he felt that "there are a couple of flashes of wit and intelligence buried in the album".

Andrzej Lukowski of Drowned in Sound complimented the singles "Wonderful Life" and "Better Than Love", but felt that elsewhere the record is not "desperately fun" and found "the music thin" and "the embellishments desperately gauche".

Andy Gill of The Independent gave the album three out of five stars and wrote, "It's efficient and stylish, but lacks innovation: music that moisturises a touch too much."

Fiona Shepherd from The Scotsman said that the duo "look and sound out of time – and they probably like it that way" and described the album as "urbane but banal pop" with an occasional "21st century reference".

Sam Shepherd of musicOMH gave the album three stars out of five and said that "there's a melancholy seam that runs throughout the album that, in conjunction with the polished production, succeeds in achieving a glacial grandeur to each of these songs" and noticed that "appalling ballads in the shape of "The Water" and "Unspoken" will almost certainly be overlooked in favour of the classy sounds of Wonderful Life or the glorious pulsing anthem of Better Than Love".

Simon Gage of Daily Express felt that the songs are "thoughtful, melancholy [sic] and very modern" and noticed that the album has "a real sense of style that’s been missing in British pop for some time".

Luke Lewis of the NME awarded the album eight out of ten, praised the songs as "fearsomely well-crafted" and "as clean-lined and immaculate as a well-cut suitwrote" and described the album as "billowing, escapist nonsense that raises your heart rate, slaps a smile on your face and sounds godlike when drunk".

Joe Copplestone of PopMatters said that the duo sings "simple lyrical messages of love, pain and yearning that most pop acts could not deliver sincerely if they tried" and claimed that they "have probably released the ‘coolest’ album of the year", giving it nine out of ten.

My Opinion & The Video

I'm not crazy so much with Hurts song called "Better Than Love". I'm just like it. The music is not an usually thing and a little bit heavy to enjoy this music, so not many people will like this song easily. This song is really an interesting song.

I didn't get it with the lyric and the video. I don't know what the messages want their deliver and the video not telling anything too. I'm just confusing with that. In the video, I just like the expression by the artist very sharp and cruel haha... and also I like the set (place, decoration) of the video.

Overall... nice melody (music) because it feels different, but with pointless lyric and video. So... this song not easy to remember in my head and if I heard again again and again I will get bored immediately, sorry!!. Well... is not a bad song, still good enough to heard.

Rating for the video : 1,5 Stars

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