The Cure

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The Cure



The Cure is a legendary band that has been making great albums and concerts since 1976. That's more than 30 years ago, so they sure are no newcomers. Their style varies from their beginning, as they evolved and aged as a band. But it would be right to describe them as a British rock band, with some gothic and post-punk influences. They have sold over 27 million records, have edited 12 albums and countless EPs, and their songs have been at the top of the charts all over the world for years. The Cure is one of those bands that shouldn't be missed.

Robert Smith is their frontman: lead-singer, lyricist and skilled guitarist, Robert Smith is the heart of the band. With his unmistakable sinister looks, dressed in black, white-faced, black painted eyes, Smith has been giving The Cure all his got ever since they made their very first album "Three imaginary boys" back in the 70s.


Talking about The Cure is no piece of cake.

They have gone through lots of line-up formations and changes, styles, states of mind, problems, tours, albums and years. To make this long story as entertaining as possible I'll try to tell this tale as if it was some kind of movie. Take out your pop-corn and a couple beers. Sit back and enjoy.
We are in for a ride! ;)


45 km. South of London there's a city called Crawley, and back in 1973 there was a middle school called Notre Dame where Robert Smith attended. As with so many reknown artists, it was there where he would join his first band, called The Obelisk, along with drummer Laurence "Lol" Tolhurst, and Michael Dempsey (guitar). Smith played the piano. Later in 1976 Smith joined the band Malice, playing guitar, and Michael "Mick" Dempsey as bassist. They changed their name in 1977 for "Easy Cure", and got heavy influences from punk groups. After trying several vocalists R. Smith took the rol of lead singer and frontman of Easy Cure.

That same year, 1977, The cure won a competition sponsored by hansa Records, and they got a recording contract as a prize. After recording some never released songs they broke the contract with Hansa, because they wanted to keep control over their music and style.

Smith then changes the band name and the three of them (Smith, Tolhurst, Dempsey) are to be called The Cure from then on. The band signed with a new label called Fiction, released their first single "Killing an arab", and started a successful set of gigs in London.

The Cure was rolling, and the road ahead was long and exciting.


Three Imaginary Boys

In 1979 they released their first album, named "Three Imaginary Boys", they toured the UK, and released a second single "Boys don't cry". Although R. Smith wasn't happy at the time with the job they did on their first album, though "10:15 saturday night" and "Fire in Cairo" are regarded as classics of the band and were part of their live repertoire for years to come.

Three Imaginary boys

Singles released at the time like Boys Don't Cry can still be heard playing in the radios when it's time for the oldies, and it sure doesn't dissapoint. The awesome "Jumping Someone elses's train" was to be the third single.

Dempsey left the band and Simon Gallup (bass) and Matthieu Hartley (keyboard) joined. The lineup at this point was: Smith, Tolhurst, Dempsey, Gallup, Hartley and Thompson.

Boys Don't Cry

Come 1980 they released their second album under two different names: "Boys don't cry" and "Seventeen seconds" with some differences in the tracks they included. To make things more confusing their first album "Three imaginary boys" was released in the USA as "Boys don't cry with a different tracklist . "Boys don't cry" was released in USA, but years later it was released in Europe too.

Boys Don't Cry

These first albums can be classified as "Post-punk", and that reason joined with Robert's looks and verses soon made The Cure to regraded as a reference gothic/sinister rock band. Hartley didnt like the style of the band, and left.

In 1981 and 1982 they released the albums "Faith" and "Pornography".



Faith was a very dark album, but it hit nº14 on the UK. Their awesome single "Charlotte Sometimes" was released though it wasn't in the album. Their shows were very intense, obscure, so much that Smith is said to have left the stage crying in many of them. "The drowning man" and "Faith" are songs to live in the memory of The Cure's fans forever.



After such strong experience "Pornography" was not to be a cheerful album either. In words of Smith: "I think I got to my worst round about Pornography. Looking back and getting other people's opinions of what went on, I was a pretty monstrous sort of person at that time". The Cure didn't care much about anything at all by the time, but the band was at the top ten in UK charts. The band made a tour full of incidents and gallup left the band. But not forever though user posted image

Songs not to be missed in "Pornography" are "The hanging garden" and "A thousand years", among others.

The Cure
The Cure


Japanesse Whispers

After Gallup left there were rumors about The Cure splitting, but in 1982 they released a new single "Let's go to bed", which was very different in style to their previous tracks. Later in 1983 came two more successful singles "The Lovecats" and "The walk". These two songs along with other B-sides were released in Japan under the name "Japanesse whispers", that was years later available everywhere.

Japanesse Whispers

The fact that The Cure didn't release a new official album and that Smith was touring and recording with the band Siouxsie & the Banshees since 1982 increased the feeling that The Cure was gone for good among their fan base.

The Top

But in 1984 a new album was released, "The top" , that featured their great song "The Carterpillar". It can be said that Smith recorded this almost on his own, and it was followed by a tour in which Anderson was sacked after destroying a hotel room. If that was not enough Phil Thornalley got tired of touring and left.


But a good thing happenned after so many difficulties: Smith and Gallup solved their differences, Galluo returned, and wiith their bassist in the group again The Cure soon was to recover their identity.


The Head on the door

In 1985 the lineup of The Cure was: Smith, Tolhurst, Gallup, Thompson, and Williams. And those were the guys that released "The head on the door", a good album that put The Cure back at the top of the charts world-wide, with excellent hits such as "Close to me", "In between days" and the not so famous but amazaing "A night like this". The Cure toured the world promoting the album, and then released their first complitaion ever: "Standing at the Sea". A sad incident took place in their US tour though, when a fan commited suicide stabbing himself during a concert.


Kiss me Kiss me Kiss me

The Cure
The Cure

In 1987 another great album was released: "Kiss me, kiss me, kiss me", reaching top tens along Europe and getting really high in the states, the lead single was "Why can't I be you", followed by "Just like heaven". "Torture" and "A thousand hours" are remarkable in this album too.


As a side note to GMCers, I urge everyone to listen to Smith's solos in "The kiss" to see how he manages to make a song out of a wah solo using just a few notes for 6 minutes, with just a couple verses in-between... strong ones though. A master piece, so powerful, sad, melancholic and great, to treasure in fans hearts forever.



In 1989 The Cure relased one of their greatest albums ever: "Disintegration" filled the charts with unbelievable good single after single, starting with the unfergettable "Lullaby", and then "Lovesong" and "Pictures of you".


Amongst their darker albums, yet a huge commercial success "Disintegration" turned an already famous band into a legend. Another of it's awesome tracks "Fascination street" went high in the lists, specially in the USA where it was the first single launched instead of "Lullaby".

Many things happened next: the band had some internal problems which resulted in Tolhurst having to leave, and being replaced by Roger O'Donnell. The band toured the world with the Prayer Tour, and in 1990 Perry Bamonte replced Roger on guitar. Then they released a collection of remixed named "Mixed".

Tolhurst took the band to court demanding to be recognised as co-founder of The Cure along with Smith, but Smith won.


After so many events, the band went to the studio and recorded another memorable album: "Wish" (1992).


Soon to be nº1 in UK and nº2 in the States, the album was delightful from beginning to end. A full fledged band giving all they had in each track, "Wish" is amongst their very best ever created, as regarded by their fans and its sales. They even releasd two live albums during Wish Tour, called "Paris"and "Show" (1993), were the listener can appreciate the quality of The Cure live on stage. One of their most famous songs ever, "Friday I'm in love" is featured in "Wish", along with "Cut", "From the edge of the deep green sea", "High", and many others.


Wild mood swings

The band line-up changed again: Thompson left, Williams was replaced by Jason Cooper, and Roger O'Donnell came back. In 1994 they started working on their new album, "Wild mood swings" that saw the light more than one year later in 1996. But this was nowhere near as good as the previous two. Only a couple singles deserve being remebered, "Mint Car" and "The 13th", and even then they are not the best that The Cure can offer. As a result of the bad quality of this album the band fell off the charts. The band went on a World tour, and in 1997 they released "Galore" which is a 1987-97 singles collection plus a new track, "Wrong Number".



The band was going through rough times once again, and Smith thought of dissolving the band, but in the end they released their next album in 2000, called "Bloodflowers". Better than the previous one, but still didn't succeed as much as the albums from the past, though Smith considers it part of a trilogy that would be comprised of "Pornography", "Disintegration" and "Bloodflowers".


The Cure toured the world once again, and released a "Greatest Hits" (1978-2000) album along with a Video DVD. This was their last record with Fiction records. The band also released live concerts on DVD called "The Cure: Trilogy" in which the band performed the songs from "Pornography", "Disintegration" and "Bloodflowers". Smith planned to disband The Cure after the Tour, but it really felt good for the band and The Cure stayed together.

Some of the best tracks from "Bloodflowers" were "Maybe Someday", "Bloodflowers" and "Out of this world".

The Cure (Album)

In 2001 The Cure left Fiction records, and signed with Geffen. Three years later they released the album "The Cure".


Again after four years from their previous release, and it was promoted with a tour through USA, Europe and Mexico along with bands such as Muse and Interpol. The style is somewhat different to other albums with a harder approach that Smith defines as "Cure-heavy".

The Cure
The Cure


After Roger and Bamonte left the band in 2005 and Thompson came back, The Cure is now a days back to four members.

They are planning to release a new album in September 13 th 2008 and promote it with a tour around Europe. There's a new single out already called "The only one", and several more will be revealed before the album appears on stores, between May and September 2008, every 13th day of each month, being this their 13th studio album to be released.


A lot has been already mentioned about this band's style, their punk begginings, their looks on stage, the sadness and desperation in many of their tracks, the look of the band in general and of Smith in particular, the "Gothic" tags. The legend and mistery that surrounds The Cure.

But it will sure shed some light over this matter to read Robert's own words on the subject, when he spoke in an interview, this is what he thinks about his own band: "We're not categorisable. I suppose we were post-punk when we came out, but in total it's impossible. I just play Cure music, whatever that is", and he added "Gothic rock is incredibly dull and monotonous. A dirge really".

That pretty much sums up what is plain to see for anyone who takes the time to listen to all their albums, singles, and B-sides: The Cure are beyond genres and boundaries. They have made some of the darker songs in the history of rock, that's a fact, but their list of tracks resemble a much broader palette of styles that go from pop/rock/punk and that undefined "Cure" tone lingering in the air beyond each melody. The kind of tone that only a genius such as Robert Smith can deliver.


Commentaries about each album and their importance are provided along the History of the group above. The following is a thorough list of albums and the songs included in each one of them, sorted by Studio albums, Live albums and Singles:

Studio Albums


Three Imaginary Boys (1979)
"10:15 Saturday Night"
"Grinding Halt"
"Another Day"
"Subway Song"
"Foxy Lady" (Hendrix)
"So What"
"Fire in Cairo"
"It's Not You"
"Three Imaginary Boys"

Seventeen Seconds (1980)
"A Reflection" (Instrumental)
"Play for Today"
"In Your House"
"The Final Sound" (Instrumental)
"A Forest"
"At Night" "Seventeen Seconds"

Boys Don't Cry (1980) (USA, afterwards Europe too)
"Boys Don't Cry" – 2:35
"Plastic Passion" – 2:14
"10.15 Saturday Night" – 3:38
"Accuracy" – 2:16
"Object" – 3:03
"Jumping Someone Else's Train" – 2:56
"Subway Song" – 1:59
"Killing an Arab" – 2:22
"Fire in Cairo" – 3:21
"Another Day" – 3:43
"Grinding Halt" – 2:49
"World War" – 2:36
"Three Imaginary Boys" – 3:14

Faith (1981)
"The Holy Hour" - 4:25
"Primary" - 3:35
"Other Voices" - 4:28
"All Cats Are Grey" - 5:28
"The Funeral Party" - 4:14
"Doubt" - 3:11
"The Drowning Man" - 4:50
"Faith" - 6:43

Pornography (1982)
"One Hundred Years" (6:40)
"A Short Term Effect" (4:22)
"The Hanging Garden" (4:33)
"Siamese Twins" (5:29)
"The Figurehead" (6:15)
"A Strange Day" (5:04)
"Cold" (4:26)
"Pornography" (6:27)

Japanese Whispers (1983)
"Let's Go to Bed" (3:34)
"The Dream" (3:13)
"Just One Kiss" (4:09)
"The Upstairs Room" (3:31)
"The Walk" (3:30)
"Speak My Language" (2:41)
"Lament" (4:20)
"The Lovecats" (3:40)

The Top (1984)
"Shake Dog Shake" - 4:55
"Bird Mad Girl" (Smith, Tolhurst) - 4:05
"Wailing Wall" - 5:17
"Give Me It" - 3:42
"Dressing Up" - 2:51
"The Caterpillar" (Smith, Tolhurst) - 3:40
"Piggy in the Mirror" (Smith, Tolhurst) - 3:40
"The Empty World" - 2:36
"Bananafishbones" - 3:12
"The Top" - 6:50

The Head on the Door (1985)
"In Between Days" - 2:55
"Kyoto Song" - 4:00
"The Blood" - 3:42
"Six Different Ways" - 3:16
"Push" - 4:28
"The Baby Screams" - 3:43
"Close to Me" - 3:20
"A Night Like This" - 4:12
"Screw" - 2:35
"Sinking" - 4:50

Kiss Me, Kiss Me, Kiss Me (1987)
The Kiss
If Only Tonight We Could Sleep
Why Can't I Be You?
How Beautiful You Are
The Snakepit
Hey You!!!
Just Like Heaven
All I Want
Hot Hot Hot!!!
One More Time
Like Cockatoos
Icing Sugar
The Perfect Girl
A Thousand Hours
Shiver And Shake

Disintegration (1989)
"Pictures Of You"
"Last Dance"
"Fascination Street"
"Prayers For Rain"
"The Same Deep Water As You"

Mixed Up (1990)
"Lullaby (Extended Remix)"
"Close to Me (Closer Mix)"
"Fascination Street (Extended Remix)"
"The Walk (Everything Mix)"
"Lovesong (Extended Remix)"
"A Forest (Tree Mix)"
"Pictures Of You (Strange Remix)"
"Hot Hot Hot!!! (Extended Remix)"
"The Caterpillar (Flicker Mix)"
"In Between Days (Shiver Mix)"
"Never Enough (Big Mix)"

Wish (1992)
"Open" – 6:51
"High" – 3:37
"Apart" – 6:38
"From the Edge of the Deep Green Sea" – 7:44
"Wendy Time" – 5:13
"Doing the Unstuck" – 4:24
"Friday I'm in Love" – 3:38
"Trust" – 5:33
"A Letter to Elise" – 5:14
"Cut" – 5:55
"To Wish Impossible Things" – 4:43
"End" – 6:46

Wild Mood Swings (1996)
"Want" – 5:06
"Club America" – 5:01
"This Is a Lie" – 4:29
"The 13th" – 4:08
"Strange Attraction" – 4:19
"Mint Car" – 3:32
"Jupiter Crash" – 4:15
"Round & Round & Round" – 2:38
"Gone!" – 4:31
"Numb" – 4:49
"Return" – 3:28
"Trap" – 3:37
"Treasure" – 3:45 "Bare" – 7:56

Bloodflowers (2000)
"Out of This World" – 6:43
"Watching Me Fall" – 11:13
"Where the Birds Always Sing" – 5:44
"Maybe Someday" – 5:04
"Coming Up" – 6:26
"The Last Day of Summer" – 5:36
"There Is No If...." – 3:43
"The Loudest Sound" – 5:09
"39" – 7:19
"Bloodflowers" – 7:31

The Cure (2004)
"Before Three"
"The End Of The World"
"Us Or Them"
"Alt. End"
"(I Don't Know What's Going) On"
"Taking Off"
"The Promise"


Standing on a Beach: the Singles 1978-1986 (1986)
"Killing an Arab"
"Boys Don't Cry"
"Jumping Someone Else's Train"
"A Forest"
"Charlotte Sometimes"
"The Hanging Garden"
"Let's Go to Bed "
"The Walk"
"The Lovecats"
"The Caterpillar"
"Inbetween Days"
"Close to Me "

Galore: The Singles 1987-1997 (1997)
"Why Can't I Be You?" - 3:14
"Catch" - 2:45
"Just Like Heaven" - 3:32
"Hot Hot Hot!!!" - 3:35
"Lullaby" - 4:09
"Fascination Street" - 4:20
"Lovesong" - 3:28
"Pictures of You" - 4:48
"Never Enough" - 4:28
"Close to Me" (Closet Remix) - 4:21
"High" - 3:33
"Friday I'm in Love" - 3:36
"A Letter to Elise" - 4:20
"The 13th" (Swing Radio Mix) - 4:17
"Mint Car" (Radio Mix) - 3:31
"Strange Attraction" (Álbum Mix) - 4:21
"Gone!" (Radio Mix) - 4:27
"Wrong Number" - 6:01

Greatest Hits (2001)
"Boys Don't Cry"
"A Forest"
"Let's Go to Bed"
"The Walk"
"The Lovecats"
"Inbetween Days"
"Close to Me (Closest Mix)"
"Why Can't I Be You?"
"Just Like Heaven"
"Never Enough"
"Friday I'm in Love"
"Mint Car"
"Wrong Number"
"Cut Here"
"Just Say Yes"

Join The Dots. B-Sides & Rarities: 1978-2001/The Fiction Years (2004)


Concert (1984)
"Shake Dog Shake"
"Charlotte Sometimes"
"Hanging Garden"
"Give Me It"
"One Hundred Years"
"A Forest"
"10:15 Saturday Night"
"Killing an Arab"

Entreat (1990)

Show (1993)
"Tape" - 2:25
"Open" - 7:19
"High" - 3:31
"Pictures of You" - 7:38
"Lullaby" - 4:25
"Just Like Heaven" - 3:37
"Fascination Street" - 5:01
"Night Like This" - 4:46
"Trust" - 5:15

Paris (1993)
"The Figurehead" - 7:26
"One Hundred Years" - 7:15
"At Night" - 6:39
"Play for Today" - 3:50
"Apart" - 6:37
"In Your House" - 3:59
"Lovesong" - 3:31
"Catch" - 2:41
"A Letter to Elise" - 4:50
"Dressing Up" - 2:49
"Charlotte Sometimes" - 3:58
"Close to Me" - 3:57


Current members

Robert Smith – lead vocals, guitar, keyboards (1976–present)
Simon Gallup – bass guitar, keyboards, backing vocals (1979–1982, 1985–present)
Porl Thompson – guitar, keyboards (1976–1978, 1983–1993, 2005–present)
Jason Cooper – drums, percussion (1995–present)

Past members

Lol Tolhurst – drums, percussion, keyboards, drum machine, other instruments (1976–1989)
Michael Dempsey – bass guitar, backing vocals (1976–1979)
Matthieu Hartley – keyboards (1979–1980)
Phil Thornalley – bass guitar (1983–1984)
Andy Anderson – drums, percussion (1983–1984)
Boris Williams – drums, percussion (1984–1994)
Roger O'Donnell – keyboards, percussion (1987–1990, 1995–2005)
Perry Bamonte – keyboards, guitar, six-string bass (1990–2005)



The Cure Homepage


Originally by Fran