Big Fan of Hurt here. I gave the album 5 stars because it is in my opinion very very good, with a high level of musicianship, and different, and diverse, although I do not think the album is perfect (I like the hard songs to be a bit harder). But it is so different, and good in so many ways, that I do think it deserves 5 stars… despite some flaws. The best way I can describe it is that it is a perfectly flawed thing of majesty. And where it is excellent, it is better than any rock in this world, and where it is not excellent, it is still very good, and you just sort of feel that maybe you need to give it just a little more time.
What makes this undeniably Hurt is that “Goodbye to the Machine” really wraps itself around you, and this is just something unique to Hurt… Their music simply does not let go of you. For example Pills and Dreams Away have these great hooks, and are bordering on being pretty commercial in my opinion, but they are not necessarily so when you really listen to them and absorb them. Got Jealous and Role Martyr X and Fighting Tao, and even Wars and Well, are each outstanding in their own right. These are some really brilliant songs.
I just have this feeling that this will sit in my car or stereo for months, because I just think it is another outstanding entry in the Hurt catalogue. And I honestly believe I am going to need a few hundred more listens to fully appreciate this offering. Some might say you shouldn’t have to listen to it so much to get that, but any real fan of Hurt knows what I mean. It just is that way. You invariably are moved more each time you listen.
Production quality is very good for analog, but I do prefer the more polished production that marked their previous efforts.
I recommend this album highly.