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48 of 52 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The first classic album by The Cure
'Seventeen Seconds' was the first classic album by The Cure- a very different version of The Cure to that of 'Three Imaginary Boys' (though a few songs lead this way, 'Subway Song', 'TIB', 'Another Day'). Original-bassist Michael Dempsey left to join Associates (Robert Smith ironically performed backing-vocals on Associates debut-LP 'The Affectionate Punch'!)& the...
Published on 24 Mar 2005 by Jason Parkes

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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars The Cure - Seventeen Seconds (Deluxe Edition)
This is the second album of the band and, in my opinion, better than the first. There are compositions and a more consistent style better defined. The instrumental part is better structured and Robert Smith vocals too. Most, perhaps, prefer "Three Imaginary Boys". It's a matter of taste. This version with the second album was not very happy because there are bad...
Published 16 months ago by Josť Henrique


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7 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A brilliant Cure album, 9 Dec 2005
By A Customer
This review is from: Seventeen Seconds [Deluxe Edition] (Audio CD)
17 Seconds, together with Faith, is one of The Cure's greatest albums. The atmosphere created is briiliant. Anyone who already owns the original version should buy the duluxe version as it contains lots of great bonus material, particularly taken from their live rarities album which came out in the mid 80s and which has not been re-released. Enjoy!
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars The Cure - Seventeen Seconds (Deluxe Edition), 23 Feb 2013
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This is the second album of the band and, in my opinion, better than the first. There are compositions and a more consistent style better defined. The instrumental part is better structured and Robert Smith vocals too. Most, perhaps, prefer "Three Imaginary Boys". It's a matter of taste. This version with the second album was not very happy because there are bad production recordings and live tracks are original songs from the album. Vale to just who is a fan, for the other album single will suffice. Completing Disc 1 (original) is good and Disc 2 (extras) is weak. Note 6.5.
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Essential "Emo" post-punk, 16 May 2004
By 
Mtroll (Manchestah, Engerland) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Seventeen Seconds (Audio CD)
The Cure occupy a unique place in 80s indie music, because Robert Smith was never afraid to let his emotions show. Their early music is often compared to contemporaries such as Joy Division, Wire etc., but Bob's blank-faced posture (as evidenced in the videos of the era) could never quite hide the fact that the Cure were always first and foremost an emotional band. This is the Cure's first mature album - the urgent sentiments evident in Boys Don't Cry are focused, through perfect simplicity of arrangement and spartan production, into one of the essential records of the post-punk era. Either you fall under their spell, or you don't. If you do, here's to you - Na Zdravnya!
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12 of 23 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars One of the best Cure albums, 28 Sep 2001
By 
Jason Parkes "We're all Frankies'" (Worcester, UK) - See all my reviews
(No. 1 Hall OF FAME REVIEWER)   
This review is from: Seventeen Seconds (Audio CD)
The Cure moved from the Buzzcocks meets Pere Ubu sounds of '3 Imaginary Boys' to this place. O.K., it's possibly rooted in the area Joy Division operated in- but then so are songs like 'Mushroom' by Can and 'My Dark Ages' by Pere Ubu. This record is very dark- influenced by Bowie's 'Low', Van Morrison's 'Astral Weeks' & Nick Drake's 'Five Leaves Left'. It is very melancholy- the themes seem to be isolation & alienation. Suited to the bleak period in the UK- and sitting well next to records like 'Metal Box', 'Secondhand Daylight', 'Closer' and 'Crocodiles'. This is the sound Robert Smith & co would seem to trademark and return to frequently with records like 'Disintergration' & 'Blood Flowers'.
Opening with the doomy intro, 'A Reflection', the album takes off with 'Play For Today'- with it's great bassline by Simon Gallup and Matthiu Hartley's keyboards. It's very minimal and is the meeting point of songs like 'Boys Don't Cry' & 'A Forest'...'Secrets' is next: a whispered-vocal over a menancing bassline- the drums, being played by the er, minimal Lol Tolhurst are very minimal. They may even be drum machines. The sound of the album is human doubt over a machine beat- the bass-playing and lyrics seeming to be the only human elements. 'In Your House' is a fantastic song, the sound of 'Fire in Cairo' & '3 Imaginary Boys' taken to the next level- Smith's controlled guitars are breathtaking.A big influence on Big Black's 'Bad Houses'! 'Three' sounds like Can or Neu- and could have fitted easily on the formers 'Tago Mago'. Really, what Radiohead are doing now is not that different to what The Cure were doing in 1980...'The Final Sound' leads into 'A Forest', probably one of The Cure's most important songs. The atmosphere builds up- and Smith talks of a dream-like world, seemingly adult with childhood fears (or should that be child with adulthood fears?). That final bass-riff is so simple, yet so enchanting. 'M' is a more keyboard driven track- imagine a more stripped 'Grinding Halt'- as with much of the album it sounds like it's taking place at night-time. At the point where we start to dream- or pace in insomnia...Which leads us to 'At Night', which may just have been influenced by a short-piece by Kafka entitled 'At Night' (see 'The Great Wall of China'). It is probably my fave song here- and one of their best- it seems to be exploring the false idea of security we accept when in the oblivion of sleep. Unknowing of the menace, intangible, that is taking place outside. A paranoid's wet-dream!. The title-track is a drum-machine ordered song, I still haven't got a clue what "17 seconds, is all it takes" refers to. It sounds very sinister- we think of murder or suicide- this is a very bleak record!
And it would get worse, 'Faith' being the biggest downer for me ('Pornography' is alive with anger & rage; 'Disintergration' is serene & holy in some ways). This album captures the melancholy of the passing fade of youth- it makes me think of 'Ghost World' & 'TB Sheets' & 'Beside You' & 'Pink Moon' & 'Northern Sky'& the posthumous albums by Billy Mackenzie. The way Richard E. Grant is at the end of 'Withnail & I'. Or the lead of Bergman's 'Summer with Monika' at that films denoument. Even the notion of Humbert Humbert in 'Lolita'- the reason for his paedophilia is to re-capture a love from his youth...All very interesting and arresting- as is this fine album- which is one of the best releases by The Cure or anyone in the 1980's.
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0 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Essential "Emo" post-punk, 16 May 2004
By 
Mtroll (Manchestah, Engerland) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Seventeen Seconds (Audio CD)
The Cure occupy a unique place in 80s white-kid music, because Robert Smith was never afraid to let his emotions show. Their early music is often compared to contemporaries such as Joy Division, Wire etc., but Bob's blank-faced posture (as evidenced in the videos of the era) could never quite hide the fact that the Cure were always first and foremost an emotional band. This is the Cure's first mature album - the urgent sentiments evident in Boys Don't Cry are focused, through perfect simplicity of arrangement and spartan production, into one of the essential records of the post-punk era. Either you fall under their spell, or you don't. If you do, here's to you - Na Zdravnya!
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4 of 12 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars It's not a case of aiming to please..., 28 Aug 2004
This review is from: Seventeen Seconds (Audio CD)
Seventeen Seconds is everything it's title would suggest. Intense. Dense. Bleak. And cathartic. For me, it represents Robert Smiths' desire to push the Cure into bleaker climes... trying to capture the sound of time running out or frittering away. As a result of this, Seventeen Seconds, along with their follow up album Faith, remains a dark and depressing affair, with none of the glory or transcendence that featured in later albums like Pornography or Disintegration. It is also representative of that difficult period in the early 80's when Smith abandoned punk and decided he wanted to be the next Ian Curtis... even going so far as to sport a short-Germanic hair cut, sang in an atonal voice and filled his songs with cold, angular synthesisers and distant, echoing drums... making this a record that could easily be dubbed something like, 'Unknown Pleasures: Revisited'.
It's not a bad album, by any measure... simply, a stepping stone to greater things (or an aural sketch pad for Smith and the band to flesh out ideas and lyrical concerns that would crop up on the better albums, yet to come). It certainly ties in well with certain records of it's era. Feeling like a cross between those two Joy Division albums, Bowie's Berlin period & Public Imagine Ltd's Metal Box, with the added detachment of Magazine and the angst of Siouxsie & the Banshees (particularly around the time of the Scream). Tracks like A Reflection hum with a pulsating monotone rhythm and a machine like industrial clamour, which brings to mind a film like Eraserhead, whilst Smiths' lyrics (in following songs), though decidedly six-form in average, strive for the dislocated despair and depression of the best of the existentialists. For the most part, it's wonderfully devised, capturing a trance-like feel and offering the listener a suffocating experience that few records can equate, with producer Mike Hedges seemingly intent on combining the styles of Martin Hannett and Brian Eno through the use of disjointed mixing techniques. For example; Play for Today is one of the Cure's all time classic singles and here represents the pinnacle of this album... sounding both ambient and otherworldly and seemingly capturing Smiths' nightmares and pinning them to the page (and then into the songs).
The other tracks are all fine, particularly In Your House, The Final Sound and A Forrest, all furthering Smiths' bleak world view and capturing the band at an early peak... though personally, I find it all a bit too miserable to garner the full five stars. Tracks like Secrets, M, and the title song it's self, all have a wealth of interesting ideas, be it lyrically or instrumentally, but really fall flat in the end (or simply, they've been done much better on the albums that followed). Also, at 45 minutes, there's a hell of a lot of misery to take in... so if you're not quite in the mood for lines like "you'll fall in love with somebody else, again, tonight" or the constant mechanical drone of keyboards and bass, then you're enjoyment of this record will be slim. Very slim. This is one of those records that needs to be listened to at the right time of day... well, preferably late in the evening, and it certainly demands attention.
Whilst Smith, Gallup, Tolhurst and Hartley should be commended for trying something different with the whole Cure formula, we can see that the experiments and diversions made were simply a case of too much too soon. You may enjoy some of the songs here. Though, I seriously doubt that you'll love everything (...and you'll certainly become enraged by the occasional descents into turgid navel gazing). So, unless you're a Cure completist, or have already purchased the albums aforementioned and would like to continue to discover the moody-melancholic musings of Smith and co, I wouldn't necessarily recommend buying this album. Get Disintegration first. Then move onto Pornography. Head on the Door. Kiss Me, Kiss Me, Kiss Me. Wish. Bloodflowers. The Cu... (...you get the idea?).
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5 of 15 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars a dream of coldness for fog-loving punks, 3 Jan 2002
By A Customer
This review is from: Seventeen Seconds (Audio CD)
Goth is not just sisters, fields. Seventeen Seconds shows the listener that subtle sketches of fear and sadness can be as haunting, as chilling. Obviously influenced by Wire but bringing some eerier shades to their sound. Smiths fragile, cold guitar dancing its strange dance through "Play For Today", "In Your House" or "At Night" is both scary and beautiful. Bits of emotion show up in "Secrets" and "M". The backround of the simply but effectively structured pieces is a foggy, blurred silence. The alienation of the person involved makes him hallucinate turning his environment into a coldness that gets nightmarish at darkness (A forest). The nihilistic inside of a punk. A brilliant mix of Cold Wave and Gothic later adopted by french band Clar Obscur who got the praise for it then. Maybe not as cold as The Klinik but perhaps mor subtle and less mechanical quite without boasting and affected behaviour of would-be arty bands like radiohead.
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3 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A must-have CD!, 1 Mar 2000
This review is from: Seventeen Seconds (Audio CD)
The best the Cure has ever recorded. Darker than starring at the sea, yet not as nostalgic. Tricky to digital, paranoid to euphoric.
WARNING! Do not listen to this when you're feeling down.
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