Ask anyone Cure-aware—eyelined zealot, curious sampler, persnickety critic—for the Brits’ finest hour and you’ll overwhelmingly get one response: Disintegration. Which sets up this reissue not only as the most anticipated in the band’s catalog, but also one of the most hyped in modern-rock history.
- The Cure
- Disintegration (Deluxe Edition)
- Remastered Album:
The main attraction promised to be the remastered album, but A/B comparisons reveal that, though re-engineered louder and with slightly more bass clarity, the new version sounds pretty similar to its 1989 counterpart. That’s no great tragedy, given how well the murky original mix suited the gloom of cuts like “Plainsong” and “Prayers for Rain,” but it hardly screams out “re-buy this,” either.
And so Disc 2, collecting 20 rarities from the era, turns out to be the primary new draw. Rummaging through Robert Smith home demos, band rehearsals and rough takes—particularly while reading through liner notes detailing the creative process—is like taking a satisfying 400-level Cure course; diehards no doubt enrolled early, but casuals should consider adding it to their schedule, too, through selective per-song purchasing.
The third disc, a beefed-up version of 1990 live entry Entreat, feels needlessly tacked-on, particularly if you pit its tinny sound against the audio of a Dallas ’89 show, streaming (for now) at thecuredisintegration.com.