Ruth is one of those pop rock acts that had gone from underground darlings to mainstream credibility and they come back with another release on Anorak. Our first glimpse into this disc is on “Back TO The Five” which is an extremely emotive and feminine cut full of lilt falsetto refrains set to layered rhythms and stripped-down melodies that’s nice for terrestrial radio, but somewhat of a depressing track. However, “Who I Was And Who I Am” is harsher and has catchier hooks and melodies you could definitely sing-a-long to in the car or at home quite vigorously.
“Hearts On Sleeves” is a cute mid-tempo song that perhaps is this album’s first single as it’s full of strong four-part harmonies, hues of harp samples and sensitive tones, but the chords are a bit weak. “Pure Concept” followed the same manner as “Hearts On Sleeves” and “Back TO The Five” with its lulled instrumentations and lazy lyrical content as it’s an extremely mild choice from these guys, but it isn’t that bad of a song as it’s quite refreshing to the ears with its laid-back modes and emphasis on less is more. “Nothing TO Hide” is another heartfelt tear-jerker of a ballad that wrenches at you with its sweetly sung vocals and light timber as it could be a decent hit on adult contemporary, soft rock and Christian formats.
More of the same slightly above average pop music fare was given to us by Ruth on “Speechless Mess” as it’s another sappy bunch of dribble set to down tempo riffs, heavy bass and drum breaks followed by a whisp on the microphone. “Dead Giveaway” rounds out this effort with something a little bit experimental as it’s filled by harmonica and violin with a crescendo of high hats spilling out at you with that soft vocal that has been humming throughout this disc. Ruth gave us a fairly decent recording on Anorak, but there were some problems that were worth mentioning like how it had a monotonous singular tone and there were very few rockers and more standards on here, but they’re definitely perfect for the college kids and coffee shop crowd.