Hurts

Album: Long Live The Angels (2016)
Charted: 22
  • Emeli Sandé's lead single from Long Live The Angels, this uplifting ballad was released on September 16, 2016, three and a half years after her previous single "Clown." "I wanted to release 'Hurts' first because it felt like everything I'd avoided saying for so long," she said. "It's a real explosion. It's everything I wish I'd said years and years ago. I didn't want to hold anything back anymore."
  • The production was collectively handled by:

    The English duo Philip Leigh and Matthew Holmes, aka Mac & Phil, who have also worked with Naughty Boy and Cover Drive.

    James Murray and Mustafa Omer, aka Mojam, who have collaborated with such acts as Professor Green, ("Remedy") and Naughty Boy ("La La La.") Mojam also contributed to five tracks on Sande's debut album, Our Version of Events, including the singles "Next To Me" and "Daddy."
  • Sandé sings here about the agony of being in love. She describes an argument with a loved one where emotions are strong and hurtful things are said. "With this song, I really wanted to match anger with vulnerability," she told Genius. "You know I'm angry 'cause I'm hurt. You're so passionate about how you're feeling after so long so the line, 'When all that's left to do is watch it burn.' It's like it's too late now."
  • Sandé explained how the production highlights the strong emotions she sings of during the song.

    "It was a residential studio. There were ping pong tables, a dining table, and a big counter. We had these spoons, and we started banging. It was like, 'We can get the anger through that relentless clapping.' That's what I wanted to do in this song: really let loose and show different emotions that I go through just like anybody else.

    Everything else - like the strings, the horns, the gospel choir - we just wanted it to be the most energetic and passionate production we could put together."

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