The Cure
Wild Mood Swings



by NeoOrder USER (7 Reviews)
October 10th, 2008 | 15 replies

Release Date: 1996 | Tracklist

Review Summary: A number of great tracks amongst a higher number of near misses

Wild Mood Swings

There comes a time in every music collector’s life when they come to the end of the discography. This happened a few weeks ago when I stumbled upon the Cures “Wild Mood Swings”. Having heard nothing but bad things, and the song “Mint Car” (which wasn’t at all what I expected from the Cure as a first single), I was reluctant to part with the £5, but for the sake of completion, I thought I’d better.

Imagine my surprise when I heard opening song “Want”. This is everything the Cure did well. The drawn out intro, the whiny vocals, the epic synth strings, and the climax at the end. It’s an all around good Cure effort. What is there not to like?

Then, after about 5 minutes, the answer became more apparent.

The album soon goes very below standard for a Cure outing. Second song “Club America”, for one. Catchy guitar lines and over-the-top drums can’t save this. Smith adopts a low baritone voice that just...doesn’t fit with the Cure sound. The vocal melody in itself is rather nice, but the lyrics are nothing what you’d expect from the band, and Robert himself.

Soon, poor song after poor song inhibits the entire album, with the overly cheesy sounds and drawn out sound. Normally, I’m one to love the drawn out simplicity of Cure songs, but normally Smith will have a gorgeous vocal line and heartfelt lyrics to back it’s just not here on Wild Mood Swings. Many of the songs sound rather samey as well, and if it weren’t for the odd intro to the start of some of the songs, it would feel like one long song. Also, Smith finally loses his marbles on the song “The 13th”. What, pray tell, was he thinking? Cheesy brass sections and dodgy rhythms is just not what the Cure do best, and I fail to see how Robert missed it.

The album isn’t without its high points though. Previously mentioned opening song “Want” is a highlight in itself. “Strange Attraction” is another classic, while “Gone!” is a direct hit with the new Cure sound. Here, the childish melodies are put to good use, and backed up by the Smith of old and a basic drum beat. “Round & Round & Round” is another high point, with the whole band in a seemingly comfortable situation over a beautifully honest song.

The album greatest accomplishment is the phenomenal “Jupiter Crash”, often complimented for its choppy drums. The song is the Cure of old, combined with the lush instrumentation from 1992s “Wish”. Robert is on “Full romantic” mode, but the song has its share of new ideas, the bass climbing and descending to give the song a bit more depth, and the classic Cure chorused guitar sneaking its way in there. The song is in the same style of the beautiful B side “Ocean”, and even opens with some ocean sound FX. It is by far the best song on the album.

Over all, the album is far from perfect, but is complete with a few diamonds in the rough that are worth digging out if you have the time.

Recommended songs...

Jupiter Crash
Strange Attraction

For the more dedicated fan...

This Is A Lie
Round & Round & Round

Thanks for reading, hope it helps you decide on the album.

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user ratings (377)
other reviews of this album
Tom93M (2.5)
Swings from drab to fab to drag....

Comments:Add a Comment 
October 10th 2008


solid review! never been a fan of the cure, but i've got disintegration on my laptop somewhere and it's not bad.

October 10th 2008


Album Rating: 2.5

never been a fan of the cure, but i've got disintegration on my laptop somewhere and it's not bad.
Disintegration is The Cure at their peak. There is a later album, "BloodFlowers", that is a throwback to Disintegration in a way. This album is, like the reviewer basically said, crap.

October 10th 2008


Album Rating: 2.0

Nice. 'Mint Car' is OK but yeah, it's not what you'd expect from The Cure

February 26th 2011


I want this.

April 21st 2012


This really isn't as bad as everyone says. Yeah the pop songs aren't as good as Just Like Heaven or Lovesong, but if you only listen to The Cure for the pop songs you're doing it wrong.

July 30th 2012


Album Rating: 3.0

Decent album. Some songs are just.... just not good. But Want, Round & Round, Strange Attraction and Jupiter Crash are excellent so it pushes the album into good territory. I feel it's a bit unfairly rated by many. Also, I enjoy Club America. He tried something new and it's catchy and fun. The bass really drives the song. I however do agree that Robert went overboard on The 13th.

Iamthe Nightstars
September 7th 2012


Treasure is pretty cool. Haven't heard the rest of this though besides Mint Car and Want.

September 7th 2012


Album Rating: 2.5

Bloodflowers was the only later stuff they did that i really liked

October 8th 2012


Album Rating: 3.0

Really Menawati?

4:13 Dream is excellent man.

As for this album I think it's a bit underrated. I feel about a 3.2/5 on this one.

June 11th 2015


Album Rating: 2.0

"Want" is the only song worth listening to on this album. The rest sounds nothing like The Cure and like uninspired rock music....

November 28th 2018


Finally started listening to this (one of only 2 Cure albums I haven't listened to) and you know what, it's not nearly as bad as I've been told for years. Granted, I'm only like 4 tracks in...

November 28th 2018


Album Rating: 3.5

Actually the weird experimentation of the album starts in the second half artis but still is not as bad as reviews want you to believe. Maybe it's a little bit optimistic in comparison to the previous albums but it has the signature sound of the band all over.

November 28th 2018


Ok good to know. The only other album I haven't listened to is The Top, what do you think of that one?

January 29th 2019


Album Rating: 3.0

this has a few missteps yeah, but nothing too terrible or unlistenable. if anything they shouldve leaned further into the pop sound like on 'mint car' or into their classic grandiose style like on 'want' - those are the 2 best tracks for sure.

October 28th 2019


Album Rating: 2.5

If this wasn't the Cure it would be a pretty good album but I expect more from them. Not bad just uninspiring as if Robert was out of ideas and threw things in just to make a different noise or sound. Out of ideas and recycling the infrastructure of classic Cure. Wanted to give it a 3 but just lacking.

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