Hurts - Desire: so hook-heavy it all becomes slightly manic and terrifying

Thu, Sep 28, 2017, 11:00






Are Hurts cursed? Are they really just twin Rita Oras waiting for their Rimmel ad? For a truly intriguing pop band with so much potential that overflowed on the bombastic and ambitious Happiness album and the darkness of 2013’s Depeche Mode-tinged Exile they never found the audience or adoration they deserved. 2015’s Surrender appeared to be a shift into a more accessible, chart-hungry direction with tracks such as the hook-laden, cheery Some Kind of Heaven seemingly crafted for sports montages and end-of-year countdowns. Alas, notoriety still eluded the lads and Desire now sounds like their final bite at the bitter cherry of success.

You cannot fault their formula or their unabashed determination.The album is bursting with over-the-top tracks such as The Beautiful Ones and Hold on to Me (and its sleazy sax sting) that demand to be bellowed arms-aloft in some anonymous stadium.

The Coldplay madness of Ready to Go even tries to make pan pipes a “thing”. Every song has been produced with the words “radio friendly” sewn right into them and are so hook-heavy it all becomes slightly manic and terrifying – don’t worry about missing a chorus because 25 of them will be along in a head-spinning second. It’s unfair that in a world that has embraced the lazy beige of The Script the technicolor offerings of Hurts have been left out in the cold with only their desire to keep them warm.