Kiss Me Kiss Me Kiss Me by The Cure

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Kiss Me Kiss Me Kiss Me by The Cure
Kiss Me Kiss Me Kiss Me by The Cure

Album Released: 1987

Kiss Me Kiss Me Kiss Me ::: Artwork

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1.The Kiss6:14
4.If Only Tonight We Could Sleep4:53
5.Why Can't I Be With You?3:14
6.How Beautiful You Are5:14
7.The Snakepit6:59
8.Hey You!!!2:22
9.Just Like Heaven3:32
10.All I Want5:22
11.Hot Hot Hot!!!3:35
12.One More Time4:32
13.Like Cockatoos3:40
14.Icing Sugar3:49
15.The Perfect Girl2:35
16.A Thousand Hours3:24
17.Shiver And Shake3:29


I often find the word 'sprawling' used when reading about this album. Now, sprawling can be good or bad depending on context - good where it indicates some kind of lengthy fantastic journey with variety, and despite one or two mis-steps, one that proves to be worth the effort. On the other hand, sprawling might indicate an artist over-reaching their ambition, creating projects that lack cohesion or sustained worth.

Robert Smith and his revolving door of side-men took a couple of years out before unveiling the yes, sprawling, Kiss Me Kiss Me Kiss Me double set. Is it worth all the effort? Is it so good that effort isn't even required to enjoy it? Well, effort is most definitely required, but that doesn't necessarily mean the album is sprawling in the latter sense.

On initial listening, the album does seems monotonous, consisting of a run of songs indistinct one from another. And the length of the album means the listener is likely to give up roughly two-thirds of the way through. So effort is required, the album demands repeated listens to unearth the few genius pop nuggets that are sprinkled within.

Anyhoo, what about said nuggets? Well, I'll start at the top with "Just Like Heaven". A song later given a radical fuzz-guitar makeover by Dinosaur Jr, "Just Like Heaven" is such a dreamy song, possibly even better than "Inbetween Days", the bass and the synths combine so well. The lyrics and vocals are enchanting too.

The other hit from the album was "Why Can't I Be You?", another pop nugget that draws you into what is a deep and wide collection of songs, plenty enough in terms of size or scope or capacity.

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by Reviewer: Adrian Denning (blogging at Adrian's Album Reviews)

This double album is without doubt the most expansive of The Cure’s career, and while it might not be their absolute best (I can't possibly go past Disintegration), it's the one I find most fascinating, and some of the tracks are in my view complete Cure classics.

Robert Smith’s words have always been full of tortured emotions, as he tries to come to grips with life and - well, whatever else is out there - but here, both lyrically and musicly, there is considerable variety.

Smith pours out all the hate he can muster on the opening “Kiss” – Your tongue is like poison, so swollen it fills my mouth. You nail me to the floor and push my guts all inside out. Get your fucking voice out of my head, and the even more extreme (that’s right) “Shiver and Shake”, but just as it seems like it’s all too much to bear, out comes the gentle “Catch”, the bouncy humour of the terrific “Why Can’t I Be You?” and the poignancy of the wonderful “How Beautiful You Are ...”, the latter having lyrics which include The Father’s eyes said ‘beautiful, how beautiful you are’. The boy’s eyes said ‘How beautiful, she shimmes like a star’. The child’s eyes uttered nothing but a mute and utter joy, and filled my heart with shame for us, and the way we are. To me, this is the ultimate in Cure-ology.

Much of the music here, if not the actual tunes, is constructive and entertaining, like the building orchestration of “Like Cockatoos”, or Porl Tolhurt’s keyboards in the delightful “The Perfect Girl”, where Smith’s vocals are perfectly stylised. A large number of the tracks suggest Smith is involved in some kind of sexual experience, as with the likes of “Catch” and “Just Like Heaven”, although it's not one big roll in the hay. It’s as if Smith believes, deep down, that somewhere there’s more.

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by Reviewer: The Doctor

As can be guessed from this album's title, most of these songs deal with relationships and suchlike. Not that Smith hadn't written songs about relationships before, but here he talks so much about women, and kissing and missing, that it seems almost paranoid.

That was probably the point though, this is The Cure after all. The music might have a lighter mood, but the band aren't any less ambiguous or dark.

I'm fairly sure the band's problems with drugs and depression were gone by this point, what with Smith getting married the following year. So Kiss Me feels like the band aren't as sincere as they once aspired to be. For whilst these songs do evoke pain and sadness, and whereas Smith was trying to make the listener feel the same way with Pornography, here he just seems to be 'representing' those feelings rather than actually experiencing them.

The sound is developing into something else too. The album has a solid sound throughout, full of stringy keyboards, twangy guitars, plodding drums, and a smart bass.

Then, on top of that happy mix, some guy starts whining, bitching, moaning and screaming, not bothering whether he's in tune or not ... I had liked Smith's vocals a lot so far, for no matter how much I might accuse him of insincerity or whatever, he was always a talented singer, and his voice was quite unique. Here though, his vocals sound like something other than 'singing' - at times, his voice occupies like half the mix, and it's just over-the-top moaning and whining, and it does get a little irritating.

Still, I don't dislike Smith's singing on Kiss Me, it's just a bit different from how it used to be, rather than 'worse'. Besides, the band do supply some nifty guitar lines, interesting riffs and keyboard patterns, lovely melodies and enchanting atmospheres - there's always something fun going on, and most of these songs range from good to great, with only a few subpar ones.

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by Reviewer: Fernando Canto (blogging at Sir Mustapha's Album Reviews [Defunct])

Some moments of utter brilliance mixed with too much filler, this double album is like falling asleep next to a couple of really fat naked girls - warm and cozy, but liable to make you suffocate before it's all over - plus with all the twists and turns, it's easy to lose your wallet in there somewhere.

The opening feedback-orgy "The Kiss" seems to preach the inevitable connection between a screeching wah-wah guitar and the cries of hatred against self and others. Smith also uses the f-word, as in keep your fucking voice out of my head! ... I wish you were dead! I wish you were dead! (which is what I'd like to say to the DJs on Mexican short-wave radio stations that my fillings keep picking up on cloudy days).

As for "Catch", that's sweet enough to be played on those godawful irritating wedding shows my wife likes to watch. And that's the thing with Kiss Me - it's so all-over-the-road even Glen Campbell is getting jealous.

Sometimes the contrasts are between songs at close quarters, like that example I just mentioned, and sometimes it's within the same song, as on "Torture", which combines Godzilla synth grunts, great lead bass playing, and some of Smith's best tortured vocals, with a general bounciness ... and horns. When Smith tried to pull such shenanigans on The Top, I mostly hated the results, but here I think it's ace, because the melodies are mostly rock-solid.

Sometimes I'm aware of a certain familiarity to this album, particularly as the running time begins to stretch past the 45-50 minute mark. There was a quantum leap between The Top and Head on the Door, and Smith doesn't attempt another one here ... Kiss Me is simply an encyclopaedic investigation of everything The Cure encompassed circa 1987:

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by Reviewer: Capt Bonanza (blogging at Capn Marvel's Bonanza [Defunct])

Kiss Me Kiss Me Kiss Me is a very manic album. In fact, much like Faith, it switches from low gear to high gear from one song to the next. But, unlike Faith, it doesn't mesh nearly as well.

It's also an ambitious album (the vinyl version was a double LP), but unfortunately it proves to be a case of ambition outweighing execution. Perhaps had the album been edited down to a single LP it would've been a worthier follow-up to The Head on the Door.

Don't get me wrong, nothing on Kiss Me is so terribly bad it's unlistenable, but some of it does feel kind of stagnant. It seems the intentions are there, except the bark doesn't always match the bite.

Still, the album did yield a few rather big hit singles, and they are among the catchier and more enjoyable moments - "Just Like Heaven" for example is one of The Cure's alltime standout tracks.

Although Kiss Me is far from my favorite Cure album, credit is due for the diversity of material on offer. And while the album seems a bit too long and includes a few too many forgettable songs, it still has enough great moments that it's hardly a write-off.

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by Reviewer: Austin