Hurts, ‘Happiness’ – What Do You Think?

I can’t think of a band since The Darkness who’ve divided opinion as sharply as Hurts. They’re the ultimate drunken pub argument band.

Indeed, in the company of a certain kind of serious-minded indie type, admitting you like Hurts is equivalent to blurting out that Morrissey has “a point” about the Chinese. It usually results either in outright hostility, or else an embarrassing tumbleweed moment.

Actually, I say ‘divided’. What I mean is that critical opinion is split between me – I gave the album an 8/10 review – and, er, absolutely everyone else.

‘Happiness’ has been widely slated, most notably by The Guardian’s Alexis Petridis, who described its songs as “flimsy and commonplace”, emitting the unfortunate whiff of Johnny Hates Jazz.

Curiously, though, the things others hate about ‘Happiness’ – its depthless sheen, its reliance on lyrical cliches – are exactly what I love about it. There’s a thunderous formal perfection to a song such as ‘Better Than Love’ that makes it impossible to resist.

But what do you think? The album’s out today (September 6), and you can listen to it via this here We7 widget.