Retro Review - The Cure 'The Head on the Door'
Released in August 1985 'The Head on the Door' is the most accomplished and accessible album produced by The Cure. Although it seems to represent the lyrical and musical maturity of the band it did, in many ways, come from out of the blue really. Following on from the more experimental and, quite frankly, confusing album 'The Top' (the album received very mixed review from the press) 'The Head on the Door' strikes you as a band suddenly cured and in the realisation of how to bring together the best of everything they have achieved thus far. Yes it is mainstream and, yes, it contains a lot of very good 'pop' songs. What it isn't though is The Cure selling out to the demands of the media. Very evident throughout the album are some of the best musical ideas and efforts of the band from over the years brought together to culminate in an absolute masterpiece.
From when the drum beats the first intro to track 1'In Between Days' you know this is going to be good and then things just get better and better. Smith is lyrically in the best place he has been for a long time, delivering often desperate words into the sophisticated melodies with incredible sharpness and you no longer wonder what the f**k is going on. The music continues to experiment but is brought together in a much more subtle, much more clever and enjoyable way than previous efforts. In terms of its highest points, well, for me its the stunning intro to 'Push' (Is there a better?) followed up by the mighty riff that carries 'A Night Like This'. But don't take my word it, sit back and listen again to one of the 80's finest.