4:13 Dream is the 13th studio album by English rock band The Cure. It was released on 27 October 2008, through record labels Suretone and Geffen.
The thirteenth studio album by The Cure was originally intended to be a double album; however, frontman Robert Smith confirmed in interviews that this idea was scrapped, despite the fact that thirty-three songs had been recorded. Some songs featured on the album were recycled from earlier album sessions: an example is “Sleep When I’m Dead”, which was originally written for the band’s 1985 album The Head on the Door. Smith attested that the album would mostly comprise the upbeat songs the band recorded, while the darker songs may be released on another album. An official remix of “It’s Over” by Robert Smith appears on the 2018 release of Torn Down: It’s Over (Whisper Mix).
On 6 October 2007, The Cure played the first song from the upcoming album, “The Only One” (then titled “Please Project”) at the Download Festival in Mountain View, California as part of their 4Tour. Following this, the band slowly introduced other songs from the album. In order to finish recording 4:13 Dream by early 2008, they delayed their North American tour by eight months. Later in the tour, the band performed the songs “Underneath the Stars”, “The Perfect Boy”, “Sleep When I’m Dead”, “Freakshow” (then titled “Don’t Say Anything”), “The Only One” (then titled “Please Project”) and “It’s Over” (then titled “Baby Rag Dog Book”) at various shows. Although rumored to appear on the album from early reports, another song, “A Boy I Never Knew”, was omitted from the final track listing.
On 1 May 2008, The Cure posted a bulletin on their MySpace page in which they confirmed that the album would be released on 13 September. The bulletin also said that the thirteenth day of each month leading up to the release of the album (May, June, July and August) would see the release of a single, including B-sides that would not make the final cut.
The first single, “The Only One”, was released on 13 May, followed by “Freakshow” on 13 June, “Sleep When I’m Dead” on 13 July and “The Perfect Boy” on 13 August. On 16 July, Robert Smith announced that the album’s release date would be pushed back to 13 October, and in September’s place, an EP was released, entitled Hypnagogic States, containing remixes of the four singles from 4:13 Dream. On 21 August the title of the album was announced online as 4.13 Dream, corrected three days later to 4:13 Dream. The official track listing was first revealed on the band’s official website on 15 September. Smith also mentioned the “dark album” companion piece, and jokingly stated that he would like to have it released by his next birthday (21 April 2009). On 11 October, The Cure performed 4:13 Dream in its entirety at a free performance in the Piazza San Giovanni in Rome that was recorded for the MTV Live concert series. The album’s release date was delayed yet again, and was ultimately released on 27 October.
4.13 Dream a score of 69 out of 100 from Metacritic based on “generally favorable reviews”. While most critics have praised the album as a quintessential Cure record, others have criticised the album’s production and its overly comfortable and lightweight[ songwriting. (by wikipedia)
A hefty four years and several release date shuffles after the last album finally The Cure’s 4: 13 Dream arrives.
Despite a propensity for Smith looking like a slightly more portly cross-dressing Edward Scissorhands and sounding like he’s on the verge of tears while singing, it’s always been a mystery why The Cure ever got labelled as g*ths. In truth, their earliest work may have existed in the same grey navel-gazing post industrial space as say, Joy Division (cf: Seventeen Seconds), but since the mid 80s Smith has mostly been dealing in the kind of upbeat Cocteau Twins-meets-The 13 Floor Elevators material that was always more baroque and flowery than black and floury.
So it is with 4:13 dream. The album’s been preceded by a single released on the 13th of each month; beginning with The Only One in May. This is a feisty return to the place where Robert sounds like he’s about to burst from whatever it is that’s got him in its grip – in this case good old fashioned love. It’s a good antidote to the more monumental post rock of the opening Underneath The Stars.
Smith’s always worked best in small numbers and the return of Porl Thompson on guitar after 14 years seems to have reinvigorated Smith no end. If there’s a period of the Cure that this album most closely resembles it’s Wish – their most commercial effort.
In fact most of the album is upbeat – clebrating mental health and bounding with energy. This renewed joi de vivre is expressed best on Sleep When I’m Dead, a song that dates back to the Head On The Door period. Smith claims that he’s deliberately edited out the dourer numbers slimming down what was originally pencilled in as a double album, and you can’t help feeling that he did the right thing. Freakshow may have a coruscating wah wah solo at its heart – but you could also see Girls Aloud doing a version. Really.
It’s not all joyous love songs and latino rave-ups though. The Scream builds from an electro flamenco nightmare to a wailing crescendo, while Switch resurrects those old rock miserablist stand-bys, isolation and paranoia, as its subject. ”I’m tired of being alone with myself” yelps Bob.
Release delays may often signal dissatisfaction, but judging by reports of a wealth (33 songs) of material it seems to indicate that it was just a crisis of self editing that held up procedings. Luckily it was worth the wait. This is classic Cure, weird, wired and wiggy when it needs to be, but never overly glum, harrowing or serious. Time to get the lipstick out again. (Chris Jones)
Jason Cooper (drums, percussion, loops)
Simon Gallup (bass)
Robert Smith (vocals, guitar, bass, keyboards)
Pearl Thompson (guitar)
Catsfield Sub Rhythm Trio (handclaps)
01. Underneath The Stars 6.18
02. The Only One 3.57
03. The Reasons Why 4.36
04. Freakshow 2.30
05. Sirensong 2.23
06. The Real Snow White 4.43
07. The Hungry Ghost 4.30
08. Switch 3.45
09. The Perfect Boy 3.22
10. This. Here And Now. With You 4.07
11. Sleep When I’m Dead 3.52
12. The Scream 4.37
13. It’s Over 4.17
All songs written by:
Jason Cooper Simon Gallup – Robert Smith – Pearl Thompson