The Cure - 4.13 Dream
As Robert Smith shuffles – his unlaced hi-tops squeaking across the floor – into pop musical maturity, his willingness to indulge his dark side wavers. The band’s last album, a self-titled behemoth from 2004, was The Cure gone metal. For the greater part 4:13 Dream sidesteps the wondrous dirges in favour of a live sounding, stripped back quartet. The results are quirky (‘Freakshow’), dreamy (‘Siren Song’) and occasionally clichéd (‘Sleep When I’m Dead’) but Smith doesn’t fully harness the drama and dynamic potential that previous highs have.
That’s not to say The Cure are only good when Smith is miserable, but moments of 4:13 Dream feel only half thought out and as a result sound disconnected. It works, when Smith’s vocals get wild and untidy, but that’s only half the story.