This Sunday I'll be seeing The Cure in concert at Fiddler's Green Amphitheater. I prefer Red Rocks (who wouldn't, that venue is amazing, and if you're ever in the Denver area go there and check it out!), but the chance to see The Cure was one I couldn't pass up.
For those in the know regarding The Cure, you can skip this paragraph, but for the uninitiated, read on. The Cure have been around since 1976 and are known for gloomy, gothic rock, but in reality defy any specific categorization. Having written that, Robert Smith (pretty much the driving force behind the band) developed pop sensibilities in mid 1980s and released some commercial albums. Don't get me wrong, those albums aren't all butterflies and flowers and happy, but they're more accessible to the casual listener and do have some "upbeat" tunes. The album Kiss Me, Kiss Me, Kiss Me is the best example of this.
I enjoy Kiss Me, Kiss Me, Kiss Me, but my favorite albums comprise a trilogy which Robert Smith toured a few years back, playing each track from those albums in order.
Here they are:
1. Pornography--released in 1982 and is an example of their early gloom and doom and depression. Supposedly this album was conceived under the influence of alcohol and LSD, and the result is a textured, moody, and intense album I love listening to while writing. The entire album is worth a listen, but the opener, One Hundred Years, surges the album forward beneath a gathering storm. The album's cover shows the band members as if they were under the influence of a hallucinogen and alcohol cocktail.
2. Disintegration - released in 1989 after the more commercial Kiss Me, Kiss Me, Kiss Me, and was a return to gloom land, and from what I've read, Robert Smith claimed to have been, once again, under the influence of LSD during the writing and recording. I suppose this album was a backlash against the commercial elements of the previous album--but this album became The Cure's most commercially successful album. Again, the entire album is worth a listen, but check out Fascination Street--the straight forward beat and punchy bass guitar mixed with the chiming guitars is standard fare for The Cure, but amidst the somewhat optimistic tune, the lyrics strive to pull us down into an inevitable despair.
3. Bloodflowers - released in 2000 is the final album in the trilogy. Robert Smith believes this trilogy of albums best represents what The Cure is all about. This may not be the strongest of the trilogy, but is enjoyable when listened to start to finish with my favorite track being the title track followed by The Last Day of Summer and There Is No If...
I'll be enjoying The Cure live this Sunday and I hope you give them a try if you've not been exposed to them, or if you have, rediscover their music.