The Cure Style

by Gabriel Leopardi

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    THE PROFESSOR Learning how the I vi IV V progression works, as well as how to play and build major scales, will allow you to play in the style of the Cure!

    Hi GMC!

    Welcome to my new lesson based on the legendary English rock band “The Cure”, formed in 1976. The band experienced many member changes and the only original member is the singer and guitarist Robert Smith.

    “The Cure first began releasing music in the late 1970s with its debut album Three Imaginary Boys; this, along with several early singles, placed the band as part of the post-punk and new wave movements that had sprung up in the wake of the punk rock revolution in the United Kingdom. During the early 1980s, the band's increasingly dark and tormented music helped form the Gothic rock genre.” - Wikipedia

    Music Style:
    As wiki says, this band combines elements from post-punk, new wave, punk rock and Gothic. One things that I always admired by them is the guitar work. Robert uses clean guitars with lots of fxs like delays and modulators to create really interesting textures. I based this lesson mostly on the sound of their album “Disintegration” but also having in mind all their biggest hits.

    Tonality, Chord Progression & Scales: 
    I discovered that many of their songs are in major keys but thanks to the arrangements and Robert’s voice they keep being dark and sad, even in their songs like “Friday, I'm in love”. There is always a quote of melancholy in their music. This lesson is in A major, and the chord progressions will be analysed in the slow parts.

    The techniques used on this one are simple: Alternate Picking, Only down strokes and strumming. It’s not a difficult lesson but you have to be sure to play everything with the correct groove. When I talk about groove I'm not only talking about timing, I'm also talking about accentuation. There is a big difference in feeling if you accentuate the melodies correctly and go with the drums instead of playing all the notes with the same intensity (like a robot) or with irregular intensity.

    I used my POD hd500 to build a sound based on combo amps like Fenders and Voxs. I also used effects like Delay, chorus and shift pitcher to get that sound for the lead guitar. I used Cubase to record audio and midi, SSD 3.5 for drums and Trillian for bass.

    Click HERE if you want to download the patch used in this lesson for Pod HD 500. 

    Tuning: I used standard 440 tuning

    Tempo: 160 BPM 

    Ok guys – now everything turns gothic.

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