Rock fans, rejoice! Hurt has returned with the follow up to 2009’s amazing Goodbye To The Machine. This time around, Hurt brings the rock with The Crux. While Goodbye To The Machine found the band leaning more toward the mainstream sound of modern day radio rock, The Crux is a closer return to the earlier, dark, heavy riffs found on Volume I and Volume II.
With a new lead guitarist and a new drummer in the band, it’s obvious that the sound of The Crux is going to vary from that of Goodbye To The Machine. Guitarist Paul Spatola was an exceptional talent that will be missed. And while Spatola’s guitar is absent from the current record, it allows Hurt the opportunity to venture toward a different direction, or in this case, a return to the sound of their earlier albums. If you like the darker side of Hurt, you will love The Crux.
While the first two tracks on The Crux (“So When” and “Eden”) are solid songs, it is the third track “Links & Waves” that really catches the listener’s attention. The unfortunate part is that this song clocks in at a mere 1:15 in length. All that did was leave me wanting more. It left me curious to know what would have happened had the band decided to expand this song and breathe more life into it.
“Caught In The Rain” is easily my favorite song on the record. As I tend to lean more toward the newer style of Hurt, it only makes sense that I would love this song. Also, the guitar solo ripped out by Michael Roberts is spectacular and worthy of some love. “Caught in the Rain” is a hard rocker with a modern edge, finding Hurt really hitting their groove.
“Cuffed” continues the more modern sounding music that I’ve grown to love from this band. More sharp guitar work from Roberts, and some expert changes overall, make this a powerful and enjoyable piece of music. J. Loren Wince’s rock screams can be heard deep into the track and adds plenty of replay value to the song. “Cuffed” finds Wince’s voice at its finest, and combined with the great Roberts guitar work, this track stands out as one of the best on the record.
“How We End Up Alone” is Hurt’s first single from The Crux. It is easy to understand why the band released this song. Starting out soft and melodic, “How We End Up Alone” builds in intensity to a crescendo bridge and chorus that unveils its true power. A darker, grittier tone is captured which adds character. Roberts solo sings on this song, and if he hadn’t earned his Hurt stripes up until that point, he definitely had them at the end of this song. “How We End Up Alone” is a superb track and one of the best cuts that Hurt has ever released.
As a follow up record, The Crux holds up well. Fans that are looking for more of the Goodbye To The Machine sound may find themselves disappointed. However, long time fans that enjoy early Hurt are going to find The Crux getting several replays on their IPods. The balancing act is the sound that lay between the two discs. Songs like “Caught In The Rain” and “How We End Up Alone” are the perfect hybrid of old and new Hurt. As the band continues to progress and grow, it is my hope that they will focus more on these types of hybrid creations. It could be the best sound Hurt has come up with.
The Crux will be released Tuesday, May 1st. Get Your copy of the CD here!
Rating: Out of 10
- So When
- Links & Waves
- Sally Slips
- When It’s Cold
- Caught In the Rain
- How We End Up alone
- The Seer
J. Loren Wince – Vocals/Guitar
Michael Roberts – Guitar
Rek Mohr – Bass
Victor Ribas – Drums