July 10, 2012

The Cure: Entreat Plus

A long time ago in a land far away.. yeah whatever. My introduction to The Cure was Standing On The Beach/Staring At The Sea in '86. I got the cassette because it had so many b-sides that weren't on the album- but I didn't know a single song, had never even heard of The Cure before. I was going to DeVry and worked at a Subway that was next door to a record store- employees often traded subs for music. One of those employees became manager at another branch, and hired me to work at his store. FINALLY, I had my dream record store job!

By the time Kiss Me Kiss Me Kiss me came out in mid-'87, I was a near hardcore Cure fan. Obviously, Disintegration was the top of the mountain for the Cure- I know I did everything I could to push copies, especially the 12"s. By the time Mixed Up came out, I had moved on to a better paying job. I loved Never Enough and a few of the odd-ball remixes, but after that I lost touch with the bands output. I never gave Entreat a decent listen before,  brushing it off as being too close to the studio album, based on the Disintegration era live b-sides I had: Homesick, Untitled, Fascination Street, Last Dance, Prayers For Rain, and Disintegration.

Smith restored and REMIXED the '89 Wembley Arena show for bonus inclusion with the 2010 deluxe edition of the newly remastered Disintegration.  He had 1000 copies pressed on colored double vinyl sets for exclusive sale through the UK web store (no US or Canada sales), with promise of a standard edition to come later.  With Record Store Day 5, the rest of the world finally got our Entreat Plus on double [black] vinyl.  Even in black, this is a beautiful set of 180 gram LPs in a stunning gatefold with printed sleeves. Limted to 3000 copies. No download/CD.

While the new master of Disintegration isn't much different than the original mix, Smith, in his apparent attempt to remove the 80's gloss (or take some kind of revenge on Boris Williams?), has mixed this show into a horribly lifeless, flat mess. I make it a point to avoid comment on sound issues anymore, concentrating instead on packaging, but holy shit- this is seriously unlistenable!

Beautiful LP- I'm glad I got it just as a kind of visual companion to the double Disintegration album, but HUGELY disappointing to hear.

uTube video comparing sound.

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