Pulp: Jarvis Cocker, Nick Banks, Candida Doyle, Steve Mackey, Mark Webber. Additional personnel: Anne Dudley, Chris Thomas (piano); Olle Romo, Matthew Vaughan, Magnus Fiennes, Mark Haley (programming); Mandy Bell, Carol Kenyon, Jackie Rawe (background vocals); Neneh Cherry. Recorded at The Townhouse, Olympic Studios, CTS Studios, London, England. "I'm not Jesus, though I've got the same initials," croons Jarvis Cocker in Pulp's folllowup to 1996's gleefully hateful DIFFERENT CLASS. As this line illustrates, THIS IS HARDCORE takes Pulp further over the top in every sense--shamelessly dramatic structures telegraph every crescendo, and tense verse arrangements give way to sweeping sing-along choruses. Cocker's venomous, confessional lyrics are best evidenced in his trademark spoken sections--murmured tales of obsession punctuate the band's call to arms for the pasty, skinny dispossessed youth of the world. THIS IS HARDCORE boasts a fantastic palette of sonic textures, from the thick T. Rex-influenced grooves to spacey chimes, E-bows, and storms of feedback. Analog synths buzz and sputter, held aloft by rich string arrangements. As the title implies, sexual themes abound, notably on the cool rush of "Party Hard" and the slow throb of the title track. "Help The Aged" features elegant instrumentation and a lyric which manages to be poetic where lesser misanthropes would yield to the temptation to be comedic. The anthemic closer "The Day After The Revolution" carries on the proud Pulp tradition of nihilism, assuring us that, thankfully, that huge chip on Cocker's finely coutured shoulder isn't going anywhere.
- Format: Vinyl
- Genre: Pop