Would one expect anything less than a
double album from the Cure on the occasion of its 13th studio release? "Rather
than cut it down, at the stage we're at with the band, I'm making this record
because I want to enjoy the process and be proud of the finished result,"
Robert Smith tells Billboard of the as-yet-untitled effort, due in October via
"It isn't a commercial concern for me."
"What will probably happen is that a double album will come out like a limited
edition, mixed by me," he continues. "A single-disc version, which I assume
will be primarily chosen by the label, might get mixed by someone else in
order to have a different thing. There's a concern Cure fans will feel like
they have to get both, but the fact is, I've agreed to sell the double version
at a single album price, because I feel that strongly about it. It is almost
impossible to get a double album nowadays. I naively thought my standing as an
artist would push aside all objections, but the world gets ever more
commercial as it turns."
Tracks due to make the cut include "Lusting Here in Your Mind" ("It sounds
suspiciously like heavy rock to me," Smith says), "The Hungry Ghost," "The
Perfect Boy," "Christmas Without You" ("That's not a very happy song," he
says) and "Please Come Home."
"There are songs about relationships, the material world, politics and
religion. They're very upfront and dynamic," says Smith of the new songs.
"People will be surprised how stripped-down and in-your-face the record is."
Smith also trolled through his massive catalog of demos and found three pieces
dating back to the '80s that the band revamped. "They've changed quite a lot,
but the basic melody and chord structure has remained," he says. "They do have
a certain old Cure-ness about them."
As usual, Smith slaved over the
lyrics, contributing to a delay in completing the project. "I've gone through
so many revisions, probably more than all of the other records put together,"
he says. "I just wanted to get the tone right to reflect how I am at the age
Smith promises the Cure will play new material during its
fall North American tour,
but not too much. "A lot of people who come to Cure shows want to hear
something they haven't heard before, but they also want to hear old songs," he
offers. "I enjoy playing them. But the idea of going out and doing a
two-and-a-half hour show and including 10 or 12 new songs would actually be
really awful, I think. A show is an experience. Anyone coming to a Cure show
isn't going to go home and think about buying the album. They've already made
their minds up by the fact they've bought a ticket to see us."