Andrew Hung – Deliverance

Andrew Hung’s latest solo record is a patchy affair, as prone to misstep as it is to moments of thrashing joy

Album Review by Joe Creely | 08 Aug 2023
  • Andrew Hung – Deliverance
Album title: Deliverance
Artist: Andrew Hung
Label: Lex Records
Release date: 11 Aug

The sprawling variety of Andrew Hung’s solo work, which has taken in his own solo synth-pop, co-produced Beth Orton’s Kidsticks and soundtracked the films of oddball auteur Jim Hosking, leads to this, his third solo outing. It’s possibly his most straightforward development so far, working as a marginally poppier, slightly streamlined version of 2021’s Devastation.

As you’d expect of someone who spent a decade in anthemic noise legends Fuck Buttons, it’s an incredibly muscular record, dense with pulsing basslines and hammered drums. It’s not reinventing the wheel but there is interesting details all over, like the dragged scrapheap of mangled metallic tones in Find Out or the crescendo of accumulated synth debris that closes the album on Love Is. The instrumentals carry the brunt of the record’s finest moments, managing to siphon his trademark noise into something momentous and emotive. 

The sonic scale of these instrumentals means his singing and lyrics need to match this intensity, but his voice, always a Marmite thing, is pushed front and centre and doesn’t quite stand up to the task. There’s a keening, desperate-to-emote quality that is so oversold it ultimately feels disingenuous: think am-dram Phil Oakey. This, when combined with the mire of lyrical clichés that fill Soldier and Changes, really sinks the central stretch of the record.

While Deliverance does have instances of real bracing power, it equally finds itself faltering in its most exposed moments where it really needs to connect.

Listen to: Find Out, Too Much, Love Is