Interview: Adam Anderson of Hurts

By on Monday, 16th May 2011 at 12:00 pm

All in-text photos by Victoria Stanley

During Hurts’ first Hong Kong visit, I was lucky enough to caught up with Adam from Hurts and asked him a few questions. Conducted on the hottest day so far this year in Hong Kong, Hurts didn’t seem to fear the heat. They were both in all black outfits and as well-groomed as usual.

So first of all, welcome to Hong Kong. How’s the ‘Hurts invi-Asian’ (Hurts invasion of Asia) going so far?
We’ve loved it, we loved every minute, it feels like a holiday for Theo and I.
What do you think of Hong Kong?
Ehh, it was the best drive from an airport to a hotel I’ve ever had in my life. It’s unbelievable. Imagine living in one of those blocks (apartment buildings), and look out the windows and there are mountains, whereas in England, you look out the windows and there are just houses.
Well, we (locals) always find it very convenient if you want to commit suicide, you can just jump out of any one of those buildings and you’re done.
That’s an image for you.

As you guys are from Manchester, such a musically blessed place, do you seek any of the local bands or artists as inspiration?
I guess there are two sides of Manchester, there’s musical heritage, ones like Oasis, New Order and Joy Division. There are also some new bands like the one band called the Heartbreaks, have you ever heard of them?
Yeah, you’ve recently remixed one of their tracks.
Yes. And they are a lot of new exciting bands which got a lot of potential I think. So we think there are two sides of Manchester. There’s the past, and there’s the future. Hopefully the people will embrace the future a bit more than the past.
Like Dutch Uncles, Everything Everything and Airship…
Yea yea! How did you know about all these bands?
I enjoy the music from the North a lot! Do you like any of the newer bands from Manchester?
I like Delphic, they are my friends. It’s hard because even though we’re from Manchester, we spent the last year and a half in different countries, so we lost touch a little bit with them. But all I care about is new music from Manchester pushing forward, not relying on Peter Hook from New Order. Great, I want fresh things to be happening, so then it’s inspiring for young people.

Right. Well, since most of your songs are very emotional, do you find that they lose their initial meanings when you have to perform them almost everyday?
It’s amazing how many songs in history are misinterpreted, but in an amazing way. It means something to someone, I think it’s the beauty of music really. It’s what you make of it and I think our songs are the same really, and hopefully people can pick out lines and mean something to their lives and that’s what we want to do.
Do you think the Mancunian rain has contributed a lot to the Hurts sound? If you were based in a more sunny place, say Brighton, do you think the Hurts sound would change entirely?
Em, I think it would be very different, because Manchester is where we met each other and it’s where we had a lot of bad times, good times as well. It’s where we learnt to make music together, and I can’t imagine being in any of the cities really. Every song on the album is who we are as people.

Can you give us a hint on what the second album would sound like?
I’ve started to think about it, definitely, I think, em, one thing I know is that it is not going to be sad. I don’t think we’ll be capable of that because you’ve gotta write about how your life is really, if you want to be honest and make honest music. With the first album, there were problems in our lives. It’s a year in our lives and it was very honest, very open. And I think it would be insulting to do the same one again when really, our lives aren’t like that anymore. So, I think there are other emotions to explore: maybe aggression, anger, these kinds of emotions, instead of just sadness.
Does it insinuate that you guys will smile a lot more in public maybe?
Ahhhhh no. It doesn’t mean that. [all laugh]

Looking into the future, how likely do you think you’ll give your current style a twist?
Maybe, yeah! It’s good to move forward, I think whatever we do, the music, the way we look, the videos, it’ll always be Hurts. But I think it’s good to involve a bit change. To push things forward a bit.
What kind of twist do you think it’ll be? Maybe go back to…
Don’t say it. No. I don’t know, I think we’ll see. Maybe in summer, we’ll do some new things.

A fan would like to know if you’ll be working with Jonas Quant again in the next album? Or maybe even with Performance?
Performance are my friends really. Maybe, maybe not. I don’t know, I think we can do more ourselves now. I think I’m a better producer than I used to be and I think I’d like to try it myself.

Ah I see. Have you been recording any new material? Can you give us an insight to the new stuff from Hurts?
No, we haven’t been. It’s really difficult for us to write when we’re touring.
So you guys don’t write when you’re on the road?
A: It’s impossible for us ’cause for the first time, we had a dark room and we stared at each other everyday and hoped, prayed to god that one of us would do something good and it never happened. And so I can’t imagine writing on tour, how that would work for us, which is a shame because it’d be nice to be writing now and capture this moment of our lives. Hopefully I’ll remember it by Christmas.

Regarding your fans, which place do you think has the most passionate fans?
I think Russia was the biggest reaction.
I heard you got chased after by some fans before?
We got chased after a few times. There are passionate fans in Russia. I think it’s because bands don’t really go there, we went to some places where most bands don’t go. I think that makes them really appreciate us going and really don’t want us to leave.

About a year ago, you played your first gig in Salford, at a church. How do you feel about playing in Hong Kong just a year after that?
It’s a miracle, it is incredible. Often we try to understand why certain countries like our music, but we can never find out the answers. It’s just one of these things where we’re really glad to be here and are terrified to back to a bad life. I guess we’ll just carry on with it.

I’m so tired of my own voice, so tired of it…
Maybe let’s talk about music videos? You made the first two, ‘Wonderful Life’ and ‘Blood, Tears and Gold’ yourselves, do you plan to make your own videos again?
I think it’d be good to go back and do some of the things on our own really. The idea is just doesn’t matter what budget it is, if you’re idea is good enough, it’ll work. Our first video costs us 20 quid and look at all those views! I think it’s good in involve less people.
Definitely. Thanks for your time and enjoy your show in Hong Kong.

The show was sensational, and lead singer Theo was constantly throwing white roses from the stage to the crowd throughout the show. It all ended with an encore, featuring ‘Better Than Love’. As a huge fan of theirs, I am already anticipating their next show in Hong Kong.

More photos from the day behind the cut.

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