Hurt – Vol. 1 Sampler (CD)

This is one of the only new hard rock bands that does not take the sound of acts like Disturbed and 10 Years to heart, deciding to mix a little Tool and Kenny Wayne Shepherd for something that weaves its way around genres for five and a half minutes (“Rapture”) before sputtering out. The track is diverse enough to really be able to connect to a large segment of the populace, as well as keep individuals interested for most of the track’s long runtime. Understanding that this is the “album” version of the track, I really wonder what the radio cut of “Rapture” sounds like, as the song could conceivably be tightened up for a greater effect.

Hurt may just be the most innovative major-label hard rock / metal band of the last decade (I’m thinking Kyuss beats them out slightly, but that band’s time was over a decade ago). “Falls Apart” is another major change for Hurt, as it relies on a much more sedate sound for its near five-minute runtime. Hurt succeeds here through the slow accumulation of tempo that links Hurt to critically-acclaimed acts like Live; when the band kicks into the harder style of the chorus, one is shown clearly that the band has something more than just technical ability; they also can arrange amazingly. The swirling atmosphere of “Falls Apart” really gives the track another layer of fury; what one can liken “Falls Apart” to is a landslide, starting with only a few pieces of dust but ending with tons of detritus rolling over anything in its path. Finishing off the sampler with “House Carpenter”, Hurt seems to change their style again.

This time, the band opts for a more progressive type of metal, with a “Silent Lucidity” (or “Epic”) type of bombast present. There seems to be some talent present in Hurt that is typically not present in any metal band outside of System of a Down. The three cuts show three different faces of Hurt, but the one thing that is really noticeable about the band is that they always put their entire soul into their music. Here’s to hoping that the full album (Vol. 1) is more of the same and that Hurt gets the press that they deserve. Hurt making it big would be the gust of air necessary for a new style of music to dominate that is not a race to copy what has worked in the past.

Top Track: House Carpenter

Rating: 6.4/10

Hurt – Vol. 1 Sampler / 2006 Capitol / 3 Tracks / http://www.hurtband.com / http://www.capitolrecords.com / Reviewed 05 March 2006

[JMcQ]

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