Join.. Dots:B- Sides..Rarities Original recording remastered, Best of, Box set
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|1. This Twilight Garden|
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|5. Wrong Number (Smith Remix)|
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A remarkable four-disc set of B-sides and rarities, JOIN THE DOTS serves as a sort of alternate history for the Cure, one of the world's most beloved post-punk/alt-rock bands. Painstakingly compiled by Cure frontman (and the group's only constant member) Robert Smith, DOTS provides dozens of glimpses into the literal flip-side of their singles by collectingmany long-lost tracks, including the classic songs previously featured only on the cassette version of STARING AT THE SEA: THE SINGLES. Disc one begins in the late 1970s and consists of early tracks that show the Cure in a wildly adventurous mode--tearing into the punky "Pillbox Tales", driftingthrough the gloomy "Descent", and bouncing along to the oddly danceable "Throw Your Foot". By disc two, Smith and the lads have become college-rock heroes, and despite their goth looks, they move steadily into poppier territory on songs such as the synth-laden "Breathe" and the upbeat "Hey You!!!",eventually settling into their dreamy post-DISINTEGRATION era on "This Twilight Garden", "Halo", and "Home" on the third and fourth discs. Also included are cover tunes and remixes, topping off an impressive collection that features many could've-been A-sides (particularly "The Exploding Boy", "Harold and Joe", and "Signal to Noise") and reveals why a younger generation has become entranced by the Cure's dynamic sound.
A testament to the Cures explosive creativity, Join the Dots is also an ode to the bands remarkable consistency. Spanning the groups entire career, itll keep fans happily burrowing away for hours; days, even. Disc 1 concentrates on Robert Smiths early growth spurts, when his jerky goth-pop blossomed with depth and savvy. Disc 2 recycles some of Kiss Me, Kiss Me, Kiss Mes motifs (theres a touch of "A Thousand Hours" in "Breath," for instance), and pays tribute to their early-90s Mixed Up Madchester phase with "Harold and Joe." Elsewhere, there are covers of "Young Americans," Depeche Modes "World in My Eyes," "Purple Haze," and three versions of the Doors "Hello I Love You," as well as more recent material like an acoustic version of "Maybe Someday" from 2000s Bloodflowers. The handsome packaging features a complete career retrospective partially narrated by Smith himself. As a capstone to a brilliant career, Dots is a sublime walk down memory lane for tortured hearts and melancholy moods. --Matthew Cooke
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Top Customer Reviews
Completists need it as it shows a complete alternate reality/history of The Cure (not to mention the wonderfully direct history of the band included in the liner notes). It parallels the many stages, phases, and styles that Robert Smith and the boys have experimented with and morphed in to (and out of) while gathering the numerous rarities, b-sides, alternate versions and non-album tracks that The Cure have recorded over their 25 year career.
Novists need this set because to be honest - nearly all of the songs are damn good. Many of these songs could have been on the albums proper (sometimes they were left off simply because they didn't fit the style of the album, or sometimes the band had written an overabundance of quality material). "Pillbox Tales" (with Banshee Siouxsie Sioux on background wailing) is good enough to be on either "Boys Don't Cry" or "Seventeen Seconds" but doesn't really fit into the style of either album. While "Charlotte Sometimes" b-side "Splintered In Her Head" would have fit in on "Pornography" perfectly and foreshadowed what was to come with that classic album.
From there the songs even get better: "The Exploding Boy", "A Few Hours After This...", and "Stop Dead" all could have been on "The Head on the Door" and likely would have been had this album been made in the CD, rather than the casette, era. The tracks from the "Kiss Me, Kiss Me, Kiss Me" era are good typical cure tracks from that era with two standouts in "A Japanese Dream" and "Sugar Girl" that would have been great on the album. The "Disintegration" album is near perfect as is and I wouldn't mess with it.Read more ›
I share this opinion too as great B-Sides open the fan up to different sides of the artist or group. This is indeed a treasure chest of beautiful and lost gems.
Why Do I Rate this Collection Five Stars?:
The Cure are known for their dreamlike sounds and rock undercurrents. So here the B-Sides show more depth in this vein.
Many of these tracks are unbelievable omissions from Cure albums such as "I'm Cold", "Stop Dead", "Sugar Girl", "Babble", "This Twilight Garden" (my personal fave), as well as Robert's prediction of the new direction the Cure may take on the next new album based around the song "Signal to Noise"...hope that prediction comes true! All the rare and forgotton songs show you new found colours and sounds of this great band.
The box is beautiufl with an amazing book where Robert comments on all the songs, lots of great pics and the original artwork for the single sleeves as well as a complete Discography! A lot of time went into this glossy and arty design project to please the fans!
In Conclusion, introduce yourself to "The Other Cure"....the songs you never heard much of, the great B-Sides of a group you love!
It's great to finally have all of those wonderful B-sides and rarities in 1 place. And it's about time those great songs from the b-side of the 'Staring at the Sea' tape got remastered (wasn't that outtake collection called 'Standing on a Beach'). You'll also get lots of remixes and covers. Having 3 versions of The Doors' cover "Hello I Love You" seems excessive but I'd rather have more than less - wouldn't you? They also have the Bowie cover "Young Americans". Wondering why they didn't include Hendrix' "Foxy Lady" though. Do you realize The Cure has done 3 Hendrix covers (Hey Joe, Foxy Lady and Purple Haze)?
The most pleasant surprise was the inclusion of the painfully hard-to-find "To the Sky" from the b-side of the 'Concert' live tape release. The biggest disappointment is the non-inclusion of the excellent "Forever" from that same release. Why o' why can they not release this on CD?! And I'll bet you that it doesn't find it's way onto any of the upcoming studio remasters because it wasn't a b-side from any particular release. Also missing are "Carnage Visors" and "Curiousity". Still the collection is nearly complete and long overdue.
The packaging is very nicely done. It looks like a long, thin hardcover book (I didn't just say long, thin and hard did I?) and includes loads of color photos spanning the band's history. Also includes a narrative history that I plan to read soon.
OK now, less reading... more buying.
And how are those songs? Well, some are really excellent, but most of them are mediocre or poor. You can pretty much throw out disc four, being that it contains zero good songs, as well as a truly awful remix of "A Forest". But that really isn't shocking, being that the albums that disc is culled from is the unlistanable "Wild Mood Swings" and the mediocre "Bloodflowers". Was anyone really asking for B-Sides of those two records.
Disc three contains "Burn", which in my book is the best Cure song ever, but the rest of it is faceless.
Now all that said, there are some really cool stuff on the first two discs, which leads me to ask the question: why not just put the best stuff on a two disc set, and leave the bad stuff(i.e. discs three and four) off. My friends, the reason is this: cash money.
The booklet is however is very infomative and features a lot of really cool pictures, though I must warn you, the last one of Bob Smith is quite scary(unintentionally).
This box set is far from essential, as a matter of fact, I am pretty sure that you can live without it unless you are a Cure completist. And if you are, you probably have all these songs already.
Most recent customer reviews
The very reason why i bought this collection is for "The Dredd Song" especially, which is from the Sylvester Stallone film titled "Judge Dredd" and also for the song called "Burn"... Read morePublished on May 22 2014 by Shaman
Out of the 4 cd's i managed to make 1 complete mixed cd that is worth listening. The first 2 cd's i didn't really care for. Read morePublished on Oct. 19 2004 by slook
I have never, ever rated anything on Amazon, but I couldn't wait to review this. If you are a Cure fan, you simply MUST buy this box set! Read morePublished on June 30 2004 by Joyful Body Mind Spirit
If you are a lover of The Cure you need this! It has some songs you might not have heard before, and some remixes of familiar favorites like A Forest, Just Like Heaven, etc. Read morePublished on June 19 2004
Where is "Cult Hero" and "I Dig You". Those songs rock and there now where to be found. Read morePublished on June 15 2004
Your Cure collection is not complete without this gem! The ultra-rare "To The Sky" is worth the $40 price alone, not to mention "2 Late" and "A Chain of Flowers". Read morePublished on May 19 2004 by Dan Presutto
It's good to see a non-bootleg CD with remasters of all the fantastic B-sides from the 1986 cassette-only version of Standing On a Beach. Read more
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