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4:13 Dream

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Album Review

4:13 Dream may open with the doomed romanticism of "Underneath the Stars," but that slow-crawling mini-epic is a feint, momentarily disguising how this is the Cure's poppiest album since 1992's Wish. But despite the preponderance of sprightly tempos and singsong hooks, nothing about 4:13 Dream feels especially light, perhaps because Robert Smith chooses to pair these songs with a heavy dose of angst. On "The Reasons Why," the catchiest tune here, Smith sings about suicide with no trace of irony. The pristine production emphasizes Smith's stylized mannerisms. Buried toward the back of 4:13 Dream are two songs with hooks that nevertheless dig underneath the skin: "The Perfect Boy" and "This. Here and Now. With You."

Biography

Formed: 1976 in Crawley, England

Genre: Alternative

Years Active: '70s, '80s, '90s, '00s, '10s

Out of all the bands that emerged in the immediate aftermath of punk rock in the late '70s, few were as enduring and popular as the Cure. Led through numerous incarnations by guitarist/vocalist Robert Smith (born April 21, 1959), the band became well-known for its slow, gloomy dirges and Smith's ghoulish appearance, a public image that often hid the diversity of the Cure's music. At the outset, the Cure played jagged, edgy pop songs before slowly evolving into a more textured outfit. As one of the...
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