I have a thing about double-albums, perhaps it's the fact they're good value (not necessarily good) or the band gets to cut loose in an experimental fashion. 1987 was a bumper year for double-albums- Kiss Me... sat well next to Prince's Sign'O'The Times & Husker Du's Warehouse (Songs & Stories). Recorded in France, this was the most 'band'-created Cure album- various members co-writing the music. It takes in most sounds of The Cure- most notably the deranged pop they had been making since 1982's Let's Go to Bed & the bleak-guitar heavy work of Pornography. The Kiss is a brilliant opening track, a guitar overload that advances on earlier tracks like Shake Dog Shake & The Figurhead- other tracks are similar to this: the claustrophobic Snakepit (a more abstract Pornography) & the anti-Tolhurst diatribe of Shiver & Shake- a more tuneful take on 1984's Give Me It. There are wild experiments, with a hint of world music on such songs as If Only Tonight We Could Sleep & Like Cockatoos; though much is the classic alternative sound- songs like Torture, All I Want (A Night Like This II?)& Fight cut from the same cloth as Psychedlic Furs' Midnight to Midnight album. But it's the pop songs that really stand out- Catch is one of Smith's most gorgeous moments, as songs like How Beautiful You Are, Just Like Heaven (In Between Days II, covered by Dinosaur Jr), The Perfect Girl & A 1000 Hours are wonderful. There are a few duds- Hey You is dropped from this edition (fine- it's a screaming b-side & not as good as other b's of this era- such as A Japanese Dream (played on The Kissing Tour) & Snow in Summer). Why Can't I Be You? is a rewrite of The Lovecats which sounds really cheesy away from the hilarious 5 Star pastiche video, Icing Sugar is another dud- just a bit of a non-event. Still, I'm just being picky... Kiss Me Kiss Me Kiss Me is a great example of the invention of Robert Smith & Co- perhaps it's a schizophrenic affair, then again that's probably what I like about it. This single disc collection is great value- though I think the album isn't quite in the same territory as albums such as Pornography, Disintegration & Wish- the latter being a refined relative of this. Compare also to 96's career-low Wild Mood Swings, that attempts to recapture the varied sound here- & fails. A classic 80s album...
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