The Gaslight Anthem: Get Hurt
New Jersey rock group The Gaslight Anthem warned fans ahead of time that Get Hurt, their fifth album, would skew away from their formative releases. It does and it doesn’t—mostly because it’s impossible to shed some of the band’s characteristic consistencies, particularly frontman Brian Fallon’s aching croon. After opening with “Stay Vicious,” there are noticeably heavier guitars that surge off and on throughout the album (which is best exemplified on the rollicking “Helter Skeleton” and “Rollin’ and Tumblin’”). But Fallon has not lost his introspective songwriting powers, and he often looks inward to his heart or his head as the songs unfold. The title track, a guitar-driven ballad, is compelling but emotionally wrought, and “Break Your Heart,” a gentle acoustic folk number, resonates with sincere gravity and loss. The album is perhaps less of a shift than it is an evolution, with the band’s key components still threaded throughout the music.