With live music off the menu for the foreseeable future, we’re dipping into the archives of rock and roll history to revisit Chrissie Hynde’s beautiful cover of The Cure song ‘Lovesong’.
The song, originally released by The Cure in 1989, arrived as the third single taken from the band’s eighth studio album Disintegration and marked a significant change in songwriting approach from Robert Smith: “It’s an open show of emotion,” the frontman once commented. “It’s not trying to be clever. It’s taken me ten years to reach the point where I feel comfortable singing a very straightforward love song.”
While the track marked a change in approach for Smith, it also amounted in the first major taste of success for the band on an international scale. While The Cure were already a household name in the UK, the release of ‘Lovesong’ resulted in major success in the United States as it reached the number-two spot in the charts—arriving as the band’s only top-ten entry on the Billboard Hot 100.
Such was its success, the track has now established itself as being the most covered song by The Cure in their history. Some of the music industry’s most recognised names have put their own spin on ‘Lovesong’, from the likes of Tori Amos, rock band 311 and, most famously, pop star Adele who garnered commercial success with her rendition. Despite that, arguably one of the best alternative takes on the song came from a lesser-known effort from the Pretenders’ very own Chrissie Hynde.
Hynde, the driving force of the Pretenders since forming in 1978, has been an ever-present within music since bursting on the scene due to her relentless and persistent artistic vision. “Distinctive voices in rock are trained through years of many things: frustration, fear, loneliness, anger, insecurity, arrogance, narcissism, or just sheer perseverance – anything but a teacher,” she once commented and almost all of those qualities are heard on her unique version of a Cure classic.
Stream the cover, below.