Drummer for Canadian indie rock band Arcade Fire, Jeremy Gara, picks The Cure’s Disintergration as his essential Soundtrack
I bought Disintegration on cassette after my cousin took me to my first concert for my 11th birthday. After the show I bought a parking-lot bootleg t-shirt emblazoned with ‘The Cure – The Prayer Tour – 1989’ with the money my parents had sent me out with.
Even at that age I chose to listen to it in doses, picking the right moments to experience it when I could really get lost in it. It changed me. I’m pretty sure I started to grow up because of it. It was mysterious and beautiful and I didn’t know where it came from – it wasn’t on the radio, I didn’t see it on the ‘top hits’ tv shows. That album whetted my appetite; it was the first record to make me actively explore other music.
Disintegration didn’t inspire me to play music, exactly. I heard it many years before I even considered playing at all. It’s not a record I jammed along with as a teenager, like Rush or Nirvana albums. But I’ve always known every note, every lyric, every sound and layer of it.
As happens with most musicians, it has become harder for me to enjoy a lot of music. My ears immediately tear songs apart to their elements and hear the construction, their patterns – but I still lose myself in Disintegration. It’s always emotional and it still sounds unique. I can’t think of many albums that are simultaneously warm and cold, massive and yet, at their core, simple. It sounds charged: it has depth.
I was driving recently with a friend who’d never heard it in its entirety. I still fell right into it, immersed – maybe as much as she was, hearing it for the first time. I’ve lived with Disintegration for the better part of my life and I honestly can’t imagine living without it.
Jeremy Gara’s first solo album, Limn, will be released on 11 March via NRCSS Industry