Pink‘s eighth studio album Hurts 2B Human came almost unexpectedly on the heels of its predecessor, the comfortably familiar Beautiful Trauma. That record, like many of the ones before it, followed Pink’s formula almost to a T. On the new album, the formula she carved for herself is replaced with an unbalanced track-list of trend-chasing songs and too many ballads.
Countrified pop single Walk Me Home, co-written with Nate Ruess, is one of Pink’s best singles in years, igniting an idea of what Pink might sound like doing a legit country record, but in keeping the song at a snug 2 minutes 59 seconds, it doesn’t go beyond the boundaries of the standard pop mid-tempo. Likewise with the EDM-inspired Can We Pretend with Cash Cash and Courage, which is straight-up Sia (who also co-wrote it), they both feel restrictive in their need to fit into a mould.
Despite this, the album offers a range of styles, even throughout the back-to-back ballads, including collaborations with Wrabel, Khalid and Chris Stapleton, but there are few surprises and little to stay hooked on. Happy, a song about fighting your own mental health demons, is an album highlight in the second half and We Could Have It All is welcome mainly because it’s a tried-and-true sound from Pink’s pop/rock book that it makes you want to jump back and put on I’m Not Dead or The Truth About Love.
Hurts 2B Human feels like Pink at 25%. She’s one of the greatest pop stars of the 21st century so far but on this album, it’s like she’s been forced into a box for the sake of easy consumption. Little from the album lingers once it’s over and nothing demands a revisit.
Check out: Walk Me Home, Happy, Hurts 2B Human
2. (Hey Why) Miss You Sometime
3. Walk Me Home
4. My Attic
5. 90 Days [featuring Wrabel]
6. Hurts 2B Human [featuring Khalid]
7. Can We Pretend [featuring Cash Cash]
10. We Could Have It All
11. Love Me Anyway [featuring Chris Stapleton]
12. Circle Game
13. The Long Song Of Your Life