The Cure never produced such a successful album as Disintegration, and never would again. It’s combination of memorable pop and dark gothic themes make it truly enduring. A classic album.
Stephen Thomas Erlewine of Allmusic.com has called Disintegration the “culmination of all the musical directions The Cure were pursuing over the course of the ’80s…”
Throughout the early 80’s the Cure’s music had been darker, more introspective. This was a return to form. A gamble on Singer Bob Smith’s part, he hadn’t envisaged The Cure as a massive stadium rock band, and wanted to move away from this. His attempt failed as Disintegration produced a variety of hit singles and itself reached number 2 on the US Billboard chart.
Disintegration became one of my all-time favourite albums when I discovered it in the mid 90’s. It saw me through my teens and has a special place in my heart.
Plain Song: The theme of everything coming to the end runs through the lyrics of this song – it’s a terrifying moment made calm by the relationship of the two protagonists, I’ve chosen my own image called “nothing will survive when the sun explodes” to depict the end of the world.
Pictures of You: The main lyric from the chorus helped me choose this. “…I wouldn’t be breaking apart, all my pictures of you”.
Closedown: “I’m running out of time i’m out of step and
Lovesong: “However far away, I will always love you…” I love the artificial distance created here. The two reaching for each other as if miles away.
Last Dance: Robert Smith has this thing for Christmas, it’s mentioned in a few of his lyrics, always in a sad way. “But Christmas falls late now, flatter and colder, And never as bright as when we used to fall…”
Lullaby: A classic from the Lubitel book. If the hat fits…
Fascination Street: I’ve always felt this song is about the superficiality of consumerism. I could be wrong.
Prayers for Rain: “…drearily and tired the hours all spent on killing
time again all waiting for the rain.” A beautiful yet sad and dreary image.
The Same Deep Water as You: Another theme that runs through Robert Smith’s lyrics is drowning. This one sounds like a suicide pact. The water is bigger than the event, than the lives. After the moment has past it’s calm and eternal.
Homesick: To enter the door, or “…to never go home”.
Untitled: The music doesn’t tell the same story the words do.
Disintegration: “Screaming me over and over and over i leave you with photographs pictures of trickery stains on the carpet and stains on the memory songs about happiness murmured in dreams when we both of us knew how the end always is…”