1/1/1985 Record Mirror
Head On The Door **** Solid
Having proved with last year’s ‘The Top’ that pop songs and hits were not all that the Cure cared for, Robert Smith has settled down and written the first real Cure LP for some time. ‘The Head On The Door’ is beautiful and melodic, building on the wonderful ‘Inbetween Days’ but always able to throw up a surprise or two in sounds and style to complement Robert Smith’s excellent, strong vocals.
Taking the crop of instant Cure ditties which seem to have become a way of life since ‘The Walk’ - though never forget that Robert Smith wrote ‘Boy’s Don’t Cry’ and ‘A Forest’ years before - opening chords of old mates the Banshees’ ‘Swimming Horses’ and bounces along to be followed by the best guitar song that the band has done for years. ‘Push’ is a rush of a rock song that thunders along with more than a hint of - dare I say - Big Country, though the Smith vocals brand his songs as undeniably exclusive.
‘The Baby Screams’ and ‘A Night Like This’ return to the ground the Cure have made their own. But there’s still plenty of surprises on side two. ‘Close To Me’ is a breathy electro Motown bop while ‘Screw’ takes a Peter Hook bass and makes it sound even more vicious and dirty than New Order. ‘The Head On The Door’ may lack the swirls of chorused guitar that many adore, but there’s a wider more mature musical approach here, every member of the Cure contributing to an excellent record. And all that hair too!