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4.6 out of 5 stars
4.6 out of 5 stars
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on 1 July 2002
Wish was released in 1992 at a time when the British post-Madchester "shoegazing" guitar-driven music scene was enjoying great success and the grunge movement from America was also nearing it's height.
It's often said that most American guitar bands would be a lot better if they were actually British, and this album manages to capture the feel of both of the above scenes, while retaining it's own very English, very Cure feel, which of course only The Cure can do !!
The album opens up with Open. Ha ! Ha ! and guess what ? It ends with End !!! Such joviality from such a serious band !
Being serious, Open kicks off with a bass guitar intro that Peter Hook (New Order) would sell his grandmother for, then thumping drums come crashing in, finally the bass intro drops down to deeper booming notes, the lead guitar kicks in - and we're away !!! This song sets the scene for what remains the bands heaviest, almost purely guitar-driven album. The song is basically about getting extremely drunk, thankfully because it's The Cure this is handled in an extremely intelligent way (i.e. he's NOT singing "tequila, it makes me happy" like some other crappy band whose name I have forgotten did...). If you've ever got so drunk you fell over and puked then you'll identify with this and no doubt have a bit of a wry smile while listening to it.
Next up is a jangly pop tune called High which was a chart success and sees The Cure's patented 6-string-bass-as-a-lead-guitar sound make it's debut on this particular album.
Apart slows things down a little and features some very nice guitar sounds (the doors of the recording room were opened and the amplifiers were miked from outside, giving a very "spacey" sound).
From The Edge Of The Deep Green Sea follows and has a killer lead guitar riff which repeats all the way through the song. The song stops in the middle, except for the bass, accoustic guitar and a bit of percussion and suddenly everything kicks back in with the most amazing phazed guitar solo you will ever hear, which veers crazily from side to side between your speakers/headphones in "surround sound" style. Very trippy, very funky, and it shows the bands love of Jimi Hendrix to full effect !! This is one of the greatest songs in The Cure's catalogue.
Wendy Time is clearly influnced a bit by what was the then recent Madchester movement and has funky-dancey drums and the obligatory Madchester style organ !!
Doing The Unstuck is the killer single that never was. It's a crime that this was never released instead of A Letter To Elise, which just didn't work as a single. There must be about 20 different guitars playing all throughout this song and it is really the most singalong style track on the album (especially the chorus), even more so than the next song which is....Friday I'm In Love.
Friday is a jangly pop track in the mould of The Beatles, The Byrds, The Stone Roses, The La's - that kind of thing. It was a huge chart hit and it's amazing and you really should not need me to tell you how good it is.
Trust changes the album into a bit more of a serious mood, with it's almost classical piano. It's a bit of a pity that they used a keyboard to replicate the sound of an orchestra on here (although it's very authentic) it just doesn't sound as good as maybe having a string quartet or something on it. It's still a very welcome song, almost a reprise of Homesick from Disintegration.
A Letter To Elise has a touch of REM to it (in their accoustic-y with some lightly distorted guitar moments!) and maintains a very delicate feel, especially with the toy piano.
Cut is the hardest song on the whole album. Starting off with a deceptive viola (I think...?) introduction before very fast thrashy drums crash in and the whole song roars along with copious amounts of heavy feedback and wah-wah guitars. This is a very Nirvana-esque song, if Jimi Hendrix had played guitar for them.
To Wish Impossible Things rounds up the albums softer moments, built around a lilting 6-string-bass arpeggio and some light percussion. A viola drifts in and out of the song setting most of the mood. This song quite truly sounds like a sunset !
It's back to the hard stuff for the final song, End.
This is another song where a main lead-part is maintained throughout the song to catchy effect. This time an identical bassline and guitar line are synchronised to give an extremely meaty sound, with additional guitars soaring in majestically every now and then. The vocals also have a great reverse-echo effect used on them, which sees the words echoing before they have even been sung (there's probably a technical term for this, but I don't know it if there is one.) and the guitar solo in the middle is all reversed as well.
As with a few Cure albums this may not be the best choice as your first purchase, UNLESS you are heavily into guitar based music then go ahead and buy it right now. Otherwise, if you are looking for The Cure's moodier, more gothic or more synth-orientated albums this probably won't suit you.
Personally I happen to think this is one of The Cure's best 3 albums (Disintegration, Bloodflowers and this) so really the best thing you can do is buy all three of them.
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on 30 May 2004
I've been a fan of the Cure for about a year, and on discovering that my friend had a copy of 'Wish', I hijacked it.
I got through 'Open' (one of the louder songs, with Robert sounding positively deranged at points), 'High' (which, in my opinion, shouldn't have gone on the greatest hits: it's not one of their best, just the poppiest on the album) and 'Apart' (slowed down and quite depressive, but very good) liking all the songs but being fairly indifferent, but it was 'From The Edge Of The Deep Green Sea', 'Wendy Time' and 'Doing The Unstuck' which gave me a wake-up call as to how good 'Wish' actually is.
The guitar and bassline repeat most of the way through the song, matching the imagery of the lyrics perfectly. Suddenly, halfway through, the song slows right down, before building up to an amazing climax of the same guitar solo mixed with fantastic distortion effects, which make you wonder how the same band managed to release 'A Letter To Elise' (see below) as a single.
'Wendy Time' comes next, a mass of addictive distorted guitars and catchy vocals. According to the lyrics inside the liner there should be an extra verse to this song, but as it is quite long due to the guitar solos, it's not too much of a loss.
'Doing The Unstuck' is the definitive 'happy song'. With lyrics proclaiming 'It's a perfect day for letting go' and 'Kick out the gloom, kick out the blues, tear out the pages with all the bad news', it must be. It has possibly the most catchy chorus of all time.
'Friday I'm In Love', like 'High', is a catchy, poppy single which really isn't as good as much of the stuff on here. It's sugary and forgettable enough to be a good single, but after listening to it a few times you realise how superior many of the other songs are.
'Trust' is one which really grows on you after a while. It's a lot slower than most of the songs (the only tempos on this album seem to be 'fast and thrashy' or 'slow and depressive'--which isn't an entirely bad thing), and has a looped keyboard sequence which runs throughout. It takes a long time to start, but after a couple of listens you'll be hooked.
'A Letter To Elise' is the single that should never have been. It's slow and gloomy, but this time in a bad way, and sounds like the soundtrack to a weepy teen movie. Why the band didn't release 'Doing The Unstuck' instead is a mystery to me.
Next comes 'Cut', which in my opinion is one of the best on here. It's very fast and thrashy ,but still manages to be very Cure-like. Features the most addictive bassline ever. This song is absolutely packed with drums and waily guitars of every description, slowing down as each verse comes in.
Everything is slowed right down for 'To Wish Impossible Things'. The sound is quite minimal, with echoing guitar/bass in the bckground, and a haunting viola melody winding its way throughout. Beautiful.
It's a case of 'save the best till last' here. 'End' has haunting lyrics sung with a reverse echo effect (mentioned in someone else's review), and a gorgeous guitar melody which repeats the whole way through. It builds up and up towards the end, then with squeals of guitar feedback and hissing, it ends abruptly.
I listen to 'Wish' at least twice a week. I really don't think it gets enough credit, being in the shadow of 'Pornography' and 'Disintegration', which are very very good, but...not 'Wish'.
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on 15 November 2011
When I was 18 I briefly had a fling with a lovely older girl who introduced me to this album. I found it amazing from the start. Unfortunately the girl dumped me after about a month, but this CD was firmly stuck in my head. And plus, it's great music to listen to when you're feeling after you've been dumped..*sob sob*..but once you're done feeling sorry for yourself with tracks like 'Apart', you can listen to 'Doing The Unstuck' and be motivated to get off yer arse and go find a new love. All in all, an incredible album that cannot be overlooked.
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on 1 October 2014
One of the top five best albums The Cure ever made.

Nearly every track is an instant classic, and Open, Friday I'm In Love, To Wish Impossible Things and the final track End are all stunning.

Just sublime, a highly recommended purchase.
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on 20 February 2014
There are some really strong songs on this album from mid-period Cure (92) from the swirlling of 'open' to the poppy 'High' and 'Friday i'm in love' (like only the cure do pop) and the darker and more heart felt 'apart' 'a letter to elise' and the utterly beautiful 'trust'. 'From the edge of the deep green sea' and 'doing the unstuck' are also great songs and if 'to wish impossible things' and 'end' may lack just a little, there isn't really a bad track. BUT... as a whole, i personally find that with it's variety it somehow doesn't quite gel as an album. Having said that, after 20 odd years (i've just replaced my cassete version) i still find it a great's the cure!
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on 28 February 2000
Even if you have to put up with the weaker tracks ("High", "Wendy Time", "A Letter To Elise") this is doubtless one of the most breathtakingly magical Cure albums, comfortably ranking alongside "Disintegration" for sheer consistency and genius. It covers every Cure mood, from the brilliant spangled pop of "Friday I'm In Love", through the deranged intensity of "From The Edge Of The Deep Green Sea", the childish romanticism of "Apart" and the helplessness of "To Wish Impossible Things", to the desperate, self-flagellation of "Cut". Strip out the lush production and you still have some of the most superbly-crafted songs The Cure ever wrote.
The hysteria that followed the band around on the Wish Tour is something I couldn't quite understand at the time, but having rediscovered this album recently I can see exactly why it was so. Maybe you had to be there at the time but this hits all the right buttons and is still utterly fabulous.
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on 13 May 2007
1992 must have been an unusual time to be in the Cure. After having released "Disintegration", a record that would eventually come to define the band, and having had to fight to get that album released, the world finally succumbed to the charms of the band. American success, hit singles, big tours, etc. However, in between 1989 and 1992, the entire musical climate had shifted, and the world into which "Wish" was released was very different from the times when "Disintegration" had appeared.

Faced with the prospect of being challenged by grunge, baggy, and shoegazing, the three major genres of the day, the Cure retreated into their own little soundworld, releasing an album that didn't rely on current trends or sounds, and as such has stood the test of time somewhat better than some of the contemporary music of the time. By not being allied to a particular sound, it still sounds relevant.

Much more guitar dominated than previously, guitars swirl and crash in a more confident way than they have on any previous Cure album. Opener, 'Open' rides a churning bass-line with all manner of melodic, but slightly disjointed guitars. Robert Smith's lyrics detail a particularly boozy night out, and the consequences that might arise from it. There is something satisfying in the fact that the music possesses all kind of sonic touches, tones and textures, but the lyrics remain steadfastly earth-bound, dealing with a variety of subjects that frequently verge on the mundane. The music has it's head in the clouds, but the lyrics have their feet planted firmly on the ground.

There is also a sweeping romance to the album, with a number of the songs hinting at the simple pleasure of spending one satisfying day with a lover, doing nothing in particular, but praising the little things we all do. Once again, the music has a majestic sweep that echoes this theme, elevating the simple pleasures of the lyrics into high (melo)drama.

The major fault of the album is a general lack of focus. Unlike "Disintegration", which held together as a piece, every song sounding better in the context of the one before and after, "Wish" is more of a collection of songs which don't have too much in common, other than the points raised above. There is an unbalance of songs which are light to the point of being throwaway juxtaposed beside very heavy, emotionally taxing songs. One minute we're being told "Friday I'm in love", and being introduced to the pleasure of watching someone eat in the middle of the night, and then the next minute, relationships are ending, and people are committing suicide in front of us. It's a slightly schizophrenic approach, that doesn't always work, and as such, "Wish" often sounds better when certain songs are skipped, depending on the mood of the listener.

Some of the songs are also very long and drawn out, the majority of which average out at around the five and a half minute mark, but due to the emotionally draining nature of some of the songs, they often feel much longer. This is quite a draining album, and is not for the faint hearted.

On the other hand, it has some of the best lyrics Robert Smith ever wrote, observing and celebrating the minutiae of life and presenting it to us as something new, and the band are in top form. It's just that it's not a particularly good introduction to the band, and it is possible to imagine this being a far stronger album if a bit of preening had been done, trimming down the length of certain songs, re-sequencing, and possibly dropping one or two of the songs (is 'Wendy Time' really necessary? I don't think so). But still a very strong album and worth checking out.
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on 2 June 2016
wish is best described as a more mellow musical experience than dark sombre albums like disintegration.
However the songs on it are terrific and alternate between the beautiful like "TRUST" and the
brilliant "FROM THE EDGE OF THE DEEP GREEN SEA". Its a great listen.
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on 29 April 2005
I have been a life long fan of The Cure,...and this album is just sumblime.......... To me I regard it as the the finest alternative rock album ever made. It simply fascinates and evolves everytime you listen to it. By far the most amazing achievement from The Cure yet. A cohesive tapestry of the cure MAJIC. Just buy it.....
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on 26 January 2015
Wonderful album. Can't believe it took me 25 years to get round to listening to it.
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