The Cure’s ‘Disintegration’ at 30

The album that said goodbye to the dark ‘80s and led it into the living rooms of the next decade.

Today, The Cure’s climactic eighth album, Disintegration, turns 30 years old.

I was only four years old when it was released, but thanks to my punk/new-wave parents I’ve been hearing it most of my life.

Disintegration is a beautiful and big album that’s simultaneously dreamy and melancholy, and its paradoxes like this that help make it so magical.

Somehow, in spite if its depressed lyrics, minor chord synths, big hair and smudged lipstick – not to mention Robert Smith’s conscious efforts to steer away from the poppy, borderline silly melodies of their previous work – the goth rock landmark became their biggest album ever.  

Even though most of the tracks are long, personal and almost painfully melancholic, The Cure manage to make every song sweet like candy. Classic singles like “Pictures Of You,” “Lovesong,” “Fascination Street” and “Lullaby” are not only some of the band’s biggest hits, they’re some of the most moving and transcendent hits of the late ‘80s – thereby bringing the decade to a beautiful end, and welcoming the charmed ‘90s.Just try putting it on.

Thirty years after its release, Disintegration is as amazing and mesmerizing as ever.