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From the book 1001 Albums You Must Hear Before You Die.

Seventeen Seconds

The Cure

1980

Buy At Rough Trade
Seventeen Seconds
Album Summary

Seventeen Seconds is the second studio album by English rock band the Cure, released on 22 April 1980 by Fiction Records. The album marked the first time frontman Robert Smith co-produced with Mike Hedges. After the departure of original bassist Michael Dempsey, Simon Gallup became an official member along with keyboardist Matthieu Hartley. The single "A Forest" was the band's first entry in the top 40 of the UK Singles Chart.

Wikipedia

Rating

3.36

Votes

11688
Genres
Rock
New Wave
Post Punk
Indie

Reviews

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Mon May 31 2021
3

I've never enjoyed a Cure album, even though I'd like to because Robert Smith is an excellent grumpy goth who hates Morrissey.

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Tue Mar 09 2021
4

This was the perfect album to listen to while sad. Really haunting, ahead of its time. A Forest is a great single.

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Mon Dec 27 2021
4

I feel the sudden urge to go buy some eyeliner and black clothes.

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Tue Aug 31 2021
4

Short and sweet. Not as psychedelic and enveloping as Disintegration, but this is really great too. The jangly, lightly distorted style is something I can always get down with. I'll definitely be returning to a lot on here. Favorite tracks: In Your House, Secret, A Forest, Play for Today. Album art: Honestly perfect. Washed out, can't quite tell what I'm looking at. Fits the music extremely well. 4/5

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Sat Apr 03 2021
5

I have always had a soft spot for The Cure, but without ever listening to a full album the jury was still out on them as a complete package (from my point of view). If this album is a taste of things to come though...I’m in all the way! I absolutely love this offering. So many tracks to get the juices flowing...so to speak. To me it encompasses everything a ‘new wave’ album should be. It’s beautifully hypnotic and electronically brilliant. Man...did I say I love this album? Sounds of eighties alt pop rock ring truer than ever and you can absolutely lose yourself in these emotion filled tracks. They flow so seamlessly together, it’s like they were always meant to be. You’re truely missing out if you never at least listen to this album once in your lifetime. 5 Stars!!

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Mon Jan 18 2021
2

Very average. I know this band is capable of doing more, and this album wasn’t their best

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Thu Mar 18 2021
5

Vintage Cure is always great.

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Tue Jan 26 2021
4

Great blend of gothic and electronic melancholy. The minimalist structure combined with the reverb turned up to 11 creates an intense, melodic atmosphere in the recording. It accompanies Robert Smith’s voice brilliantly. This album really shows the start of The Cure’s rise to legendary status.

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Thu May 06 2021
4

1980 is a shocking year for the Cure to have released what seems to be the predecessor to many modern post-rock albums.

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Sat Oct 23 2021
4

Spooky/atmospheric/gothic/moody

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Thu Dec 09 2021
4

I don't think I've ever listented to a The Cure album straight through before today. And the first time I did, I was like, that was sort of okay, I liked it a little. And then an hour later I had to put it on again because I couldn't get the sounds out of my head. It's not that they're lyrically poppy and ear-worms or anything like that, but I think I found my next rainy day album. You know the one you want to put on when it's cold and rainy outside and you don't have to do anythingand you don't WANT to be motivated to do anything. That's what this album is.

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Sun Jan 28 2024
4

Devoid of color yet still expressive, this album is a satisfying listen from rock's moodier, darker side.

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Wed Apr 07 2021
5

The most goth I’ve ever heard

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Tue May 25 2021
5

Eerie, melodic, transcendent. I love this album in so many ways.

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Wed Jan 13 2021
5

"Play for Today" is an instant post pop punk classic for me. "In Your House" and "A Forest" are good too. Title track is fantastic. A lot of chorus on the guitars. Great 8th note bass lines throughout, makes you wanna dance. Constant melody on the guitar underscored by the vocal melodies. I'm very happy I found this album.

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Sat Jan 23 2021
5

Very cohesive new wave/post-punk album with great atmosphere, showing the beginnings of gothic rock. 9/10

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Sun Nov 28 2021
5

This album is dark, dreary, yet has a quality to it that makes it sound very much alive. The beats are driving and prominent, and the slight echo gives a sense of space and atmosphere. The Cure are incredibly influential and it is apparent on their second album just how important they are

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Sat Dec 11 2021
5

Loved rediscovering this classic, as The Cure started their rise to power. Filled with brooding melodies over sparse warm electronic drums, menacing guitar leads and tasteful bass lines. Highly recommended and has aged very well indeed. Top tracks: Play for a day, At night, A Forest

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Mon Dec 20 2021
5

Loved the “gloomscapes” (Wikipedia comes through again). The Forest is still always so good! Def the background music to dark winter dinner, book reading, and tea sipping. I listened to this three times in a row so I’m going to have to give it five stars.

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Fri Mar 11 2022
5

This would be 5 stars just for “A Forest” and “At Night” but the rest of it is great too

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Wed Feb 03 2021
4

Call me a goth, love this, especially A Forest

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Thu Mar 25 2021
4

Super goth and dark, but also reminded me of modern dream-pop-y bands with the chorus tone on the guitar. Yes, I realize the Cure came first, but that's just what came to mind. A Forest is really good.

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Wed Jun 02 2021
4

Lonely, desolate, gloomy, depressing and dark. Like watching the windshields wipe away the rain during a long car ride. A few good songs, but mostly an experience, like a soundtrack to a monochrome movie

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Fri Nov 12 2021
4

The music is pretty calm and laid back, yet dark and creepy at the same time. I was already familar with A Forest (which is my favourite Cure song before getting this, but after listening I've gained new interest for the album and its cuts including Secrets and Play For Today. Have to also appreciate Robert Smith's guitar and vocals on this as it's not flashy and tame, yet intriguing. The drumming and the bass fit the same quota too. The only real complaint I have is with the keyboards, which for the most part feel like background noise to the main action. It should've either been turned up and played more of a prominent role, or abandoned all together. Also the instrumental tracks were pretty boring.

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Mon Mar 14 2022
4

4 compared to the last week this shit is fire

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Thu Mar 23 2023
4

I’m about to type some words I never thought I would: I really liked this record by The Cure. It’s a sparse, minimal, lo-fi record that isn’t weighed to down by ornate and dreary production or by being too mawkish. Some of the songs almost seemed [gasp] fun? This is a really great record. I’m honestly shocked I liked a Cure record this much…historically, that has not been my experience with Robert Smith & company. Who knows, if they had stuck with this sound, I might be a huge Cure fan - It feels more like a record by The Clean or The Chills than what we know The Cure to be. Fuck me, what a surprise.

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Thu Feb 29 2024
2

Love The Cure, but this one is too broody for me. Didn’t have a single song I could say I actually liked, unfortunately.

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Wed Jan 13 2021
1

Creepy. Depressing. Flat. Dull. Probably won't ever listen to it again

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Fri Jul 09 2021
5

I know this is going to be a mix of goth and new wave, and I'm kinda off new wave but like a bit of goth. I know I've heard "A Forest" before but can't remember anything about it beyond thinking "yep, sounds like the cure" so here goes... Ok this is pretty fuckin cool. I guess this is early goth at its best? I know it pre-dates anything else I've heard in the genre. Best comparison I can think of is the first Ministry album, but that sounds terrible by comparison. I can hear how the idea of "goth" hasn't separated from punk/new wave just yet (particularly in the singing and drums) but the guitars have that gloomy chorus/reverb/flanger quality to them that new wave never really does, and it's all... mopey, even when there's a kinda "dancey" new wave beat going on. Apart from that and a bit of a pop punk tinge to the singing there's really nothing upbeat about it. It's maybe a bit cheesy in 2021, but I can hear where tons of bands (particularly 80s rock/punk) got their chord progressions and clean guitar tones from. There's not as much singing as I expected, lots of extended instrumental sections or songs where there are only like 2 lines of lyrics, and unless he really sings a chorus it's hard to hear the words, not quite a mumble but more of a whine, and whoever produced it didn't isolate the vocal frequencies very well. This is kinda strange as I always figured Smith was a "frontman's frontman" and would've wanted to be more prominent, although maybe that came later. Honestly, this has inspired me to pick up my guitar and start writing goth melodies haha. This is a solid 4, maybe even a 5.

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Tue Feb 09 2021
5

The amount of instrumental tracks surprised me, but I liked this one, probably better than many of the 80s albums I've heard.

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Mon Apr 19 2021
5

Yes. Please. More. Yes. Yes. Yes.

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Mon Mar 08 2021
5

Hier kan ik echt niets tegen inbrengen.

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Tue Feb 09 2021
5

great so far. Perfect for working/studying

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Sat May 08 2021
5

Absolute electro-new wave brilliance

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Mon Sep 20 2021
5

The second best Cure album after Disintegration. Fight me.

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Mon Sep 27 2021
5

I listened to this non-stop back in the day, love this record.

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Wed Dec 01 2021
5

Listened to this maybe 3 years ago

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Sat Dec 25 2021
5

9/10. Definite vibe change from the debut, and can def hear the influence. Can’t go wrong with the Cure.

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Mon Dec 27 2021
5

A much more concise Cure project in comparison to Disintegration, and that helps this A LOT. I love this sound, and I think this could sit comfortably by the other goth projects that have really shined for me

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Tue Jan 04 2022
5

I wish I was yours Strangers Nobody knows we love I catch your eye on the dark One look relives the memory Remember me The way I used to be

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Sat Feb 05 2022
5

Этих ребят я люблю. Один из лучших альбомов.

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Fri Feb 11 2022
5

Electronic whips that crackle with a melancholy fondness.

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Sat Feb 12 2022
5

great stuff, nice to get a good album

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Sat Feb 12 2022
5

One of the seminal post punk albums and one of two (the other as Comsat Angels first album) albums that heavily influenced my late teens. I discovered this in 1980 listening to John Peel.

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Tue Mar 15 2022
5

An interesting album, at least 17 years ahead of its time.

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Tue Mar 15 2022
5

I mean, it's decent The Cure but it hells isn't peak The Cure. Reflective and relaxed, The Cure are pretty unique. While this album has to get a top rating, don't for a second think that this is the best they have to offer. It isn't.

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Wed Mar 23 2022
5

Holy shit I think this is an instant top 10 album for me. I can't believe I've never listened to it before. Love the dark, cloudy mood and consistent sound across the album.

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Sat Mar 26 2022
5

I have almost the same review for The Cure as for New Order.

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Fri Apr 08 2022
5

Fav songs: - Play for today - A Forest - Seventeen Seconds

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Tue May 17 2022
5

Jævlig bra. Håpe dei spille konsert i Norge i høst

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Tue May 17 2022
5

da besta cure albumet 10/10 og 100 med strek onda

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Wed May 25 2022
5

Truly, a classic... A Reflection is such a cool little atmospheric track to open the album. Play For Today's opening is really amazing and seems so upbeat in comparison to what I know is coming. Robert Smith is heartbreaking on this one, and it juxtaposes so well with the groovy background instruments. Secrets has such quiet vocals, and it all WORKS so well. The guitar really shines on this, even though its just playing a very simple part. Such a fantastic song. The opening guitar and bass lines on In Your House are so pretty. The ethereal vocals just float overtop of them in the most gorgeous way. Love the lyrics so much. It just grooves. Three's opening piano and ambient sounds reaaaaaaaaaaaally make my heart sing. Highlight of the A-side for me. The Final Sound is such an interesting way to open up the B-side, very dissonant in a satisfying way. And the transition into A Forest is so jarring, it works! A Forest - one of my absolute favorite Cure tracks ever. A piece of atmospheric, gothic genius. Everything I love about the Cure just locks together on this piece into such a sheer force of *vibe*. M's such a chill song. Not much to say, except I enjoy sitting back and letting it wash over me. The distortion on At Night's guitar makes my brain happy, the whole opening is absolutely to DIE for. AND THE BASS THAT DROPS IN HALFWAY THROUGH! WHAT!! It's so hard to pick a favorite on this album, what with both At Night and A Forest... Seventeen Seconds is such a good closing song. Keeps the vibe, closes out the album without overstaying its welcome.

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Wed Jun 08 2022
5

Highlights: Play for Today Secrets In Your House A Forest M Artwork: 6,5 / 10 Rating: 9,5 / 10

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Wed Jun 15 2022
5

The great strength and beauty of this record lies in minimalism. The atmosphere is masterfully portrayed. Every beat and sound is in exactly the right place and hits the spot. Not a note too much or too little. It's for me just unfortunate that the album sounds like it wasn't finished, which, after some Googling, seems to be exactly what happened. Money budget was so short they couldn't re-record songs because the tape ran out. Masterful, minimalistic, atmospheric, mystical, beautiful. 4,5*

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Tue Jul 05 2022
5

Such a amazing album. The Forest is still my favourite Cure song

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Mon Jul 11 2022
5

Very easy to listen to and has an edgy tone that I personally find very nice. It adds a much needed depth to what would otherwise feel like another 1980s pop rock album

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Thu Jul 14 2022
5

Haunting album that has aged incredibly well.

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Mon Jul 18 2022
5

Perfect calbum. One of the best ever

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Wed Jul 27 2022
5

10/10 I’m really glad I’m going through their discography every one of their albums just blows me away

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Sat Sep 03 2022
5

There is no mistaking what you are listening to when you hear a The Cure album.

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Sun Sep 11 2022
5

This isn’t The Cure you know. Most of their staying power comes from hits from the late 80’s and early 90’s, but that widely successful period only came about because of the bleak and minimalist sound found in their early recordings such as this album. Every song weighs you down from the eerie soundscapes created along with Smith’s increasingly bleak lyrics; some songs hardly having any lyrics at all (“In Your House”) or just mixed so down you hardly hear them (“Three”). Any momentum comes from drums and guitar and what you get is the beginning of gothic rock. It’s a different listening experience, but if you want to hear where The Cure comes from, give it a listen and appreciate the inception of their signature sound. Top song pick is “At Night,” one of the more straightforward songs though it is still very much inline with the rest of the album. A simple drumbeat and distorted guitar eighth notes open the song, maintaining the same rhythm throughout, while synths come in and out over Smith’s foreboding lyrics.

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Tue Oct 04 2022
5

this album (and the 2 following) made me love the Cure. doesn't get better than 2 basses and drum.

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Sun Oct 09 2022
5

I’ve got a soft spot for dark and depressing music (Tool, Radiohead, Morphine), so naturally this has to be a 5 for me

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Tue Nov 01 2022
5

Gloomy but still super cool, perfect for a cloudy day. Not a single weak song

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Sun Nov 20 2022
5

Oh, this was a surprise! After having listened to Pornography, I was dreading something whiny, but instead I got something gloriously gloomy. Gloomy is much better than whiny! In fact, I was swept up with this one the whole way through. I really loved it!

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Wed Nov 30 2022
5

Superlative early Cure album.

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Sun Jan 08 2023
5

Real feeling in this one. It has energy, but not in the normal was I think of music with energy. Loved it.

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Fri Feb 10 2023
5

Perfect Cure album - just like every other <1990 cure album

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Tue Feb 21 2023
5

The Cure är ju The Cure och A forest är en av världens bästa låtar.

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Tue Mar 14 2023
5

Kocham the Cure. Znałam kilka piosenek z tej płyty wcześniej, ale nie słuchałam w całości. Bytyjskie, ponure, nowofalowe, ejtisowe brzmienie, wspaniałe gitary i bass, wokal Roberta. Uwielbiam. Chociaż nie zawsze mam ochotę na tę płytę bo może dobijać. Część instrumentali mnie trochę przeraża i wolę Disintegration, ale i tak uważam, że każdy album The Cure zasługuje u mnie na pięć gwiazdek. Utwory które najbardziej mi się podobają to A Forest, M, Play For Today i In Your House. Kocham ten klimat. Brzmi jakbym siedziała w swoim pokoju w brytyjskiej kamienicy w latach 80 w deszczowe po południe.

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Tue Apr 11 2023
5

For some reason every song feels like it was written in a Theory II class but that makes me like it more

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Tue Apr 18 2023
5

PREFS : A Reflection, Play for Today, Secrets, In Your House, A Forest, M, At Night, Seventeen Seconds MOINS PREF : The Final Sound

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Sat Apr 22 2023
5

I LOVE THE CURE, AND ON ROBERTS BIRTHDAY?!

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Mon May 01 2023
5

Never listened much to the Cure before. There are obvious tracks I've heard a lot and I think someone once taped me an album - I'm that old, but that would probably have been later stuff. Really enjoyed this. Perhaps I was in the right mood for it, but it strikes me as exactly the sort of thing that I never knew that I enjoyed. It's subtle as well, doesn't try and do too much and this is certainly something I'd listen to again. Good stuff.

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Sat May 06 2023
5

Great gothic record. A forest is still one of the biggest the cure hits.

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Fri May 19 2023
5

For whatever reason, I’ve never really paid attention to The Cure. This was an amazing official introduction to a full album. Loved the dark new wave sounds and jangly guitar. Looking forward to hearing more from them.

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Sun May 21 2023
5

I really like this album and have listened to it 3 times since I found it. it's one of my favorites so far in this project. I'm a fan of the cure so I figured this one would be pretty good. There are no skips, the album is such a vibe, and the lyrics are great!

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