Well, this is the third greatest hits/best of compilation from The Cure, which must be some sort of record for band still together. It features 19 tracks spanning the group’s career from the late seventies right up to the present day, so is it any good? Hmmm, yes and no.
For any cure fan, this record may be seen as a missed opportunity. It was a chance to finally get all the best Cure songs together from throughout the bands history charting their darkest, brightest and most successful periods, instead this compilation overlooks the darker side of the band and concentrates on all of the most accessible, poppy tunes. However, the cure’s pop songs are still very good.
This album is perfect for someone who doesn’t really like or know much Cure material. All of the songs featured are very instant, “In-Between Days”, “Close To Me”, “Just Like Heaven” and “Boys Don’t Cry” will all have you humming chorus and singing along by the second listen. With songs as good as these, it is a shame that The Cure seem to be forgotten about in terms of influence, where bands like The Smiths or The Stone Roses are much more frequently acknowledged.
As good as this compilation is, it is impossible not to question some of the exemptions; only two songs come from the first six albums? Thus overlooking some real classic Cure like “Play For Today”, “One Hundred Years” and “Primary”. The exemption of “Killing An Arab” can be excused in the current political climate, but would have made a welcome glimpse of the earlier sound of the band.
So, is there really any reason for Cure fans to buy this record? Dam right there is, because the first pressing of the album comes with a free acoustic hits CD, woo! This for me is the saving grace of an otherwise pretty unnecessary release. The bonus CD is full of wonderful new versions of classic Cure songs. Despite the odd dodgy guitar sound, the live feel works excellently. The atmospherics of tracks like “A Forest” and “Lullaby” sound awesome next to the most beautiful of pop songs that slot in to a nicely laid back vibe. It is well worth paying the money just for the bonus disc.
Overall this is a perfect album to get you interested in The Cure, and is a good starting block to lead on to the earlier, darker and ultimately better material in the back catalogue. If you don’t own any Cure records, buy this one, in a month you will have them all.
7Steve Lucas's Score