The cover of The Cult’s second album Love struck me as purposefully sinister, satanic maybe, when I first saw it in the mall record store. And then my best friend brought the record home. The music was sinister, but in a good way. The bass throbs and the guitars play in the high frequencies only. It was heavy metal for the goth set.
The singles from the album, released in 1985, were in frequent rotation at the underage dance clubs we used to go to. The fortune cookie smell of the fog pumped into the room, the lights flashing, dancing with your eyes half-closed. Listen to “The Rain” and you’ll know what I mean. Close your eyes and you can see the strobe lights flashing.
But the record isn’t just good for those sorts of memories. It still stands up as a classic. Though “She Sells Sanctuary” is overplayed now on retro radio. The combination of straight-ahead rock elements with darkness of gothic rock was one I would continue to search for in new music. The Cult moved to just straight-ahead rock with their next release, Electric in 1986. It was a great record if you were also a fan of AC-DC, but it was all downhill for The Cult after this.