Shellac - 1000 Hurts - Albums - Reviews - Soundblab

Shellac - 1000 Hurts

by Bob Coyne Rating: Release Date:2002-08-05

"This is a sad fuckin' song!" sneers Steve Albini over the opening industrial scree of "Squirrel Song". "We'll be lucky if I don't bust out cryin'!" Three minutes into Shellac's third album, and already, there has been a fair bit of sad stuff--sad, and pretty scary. Albini--day job as a notoriously exacting underground producer, and as a relaxing hobby, Shellac's super-intense frontman--was never the most forgiving of fellows. But after the studious avant-rock of Shellac's last album, Terraform, the outpour of billious hate that Albini unleashes on 1000 Hurts is enough to knock a casual listener sideways. There's a concept, of sorts: Albini is a cuckolded husband, planning revenge on his absent wife and her lover, a theme confronted with fearful loathing on the opening "Prayer To God": "Him, just fuckin' kill him/I don't care if it hurts/Yes, I do, I want it to..." Where it is this coherent, 1000 Hurts is incendiary, passionate experimental rock of the highest strata; were it not for the occasional moments where the po-faced spirit of stern musicmanship take over, this would be the consummate Albini document. --Louis Pattison

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