The Cure's First U.S. Hit Took a Short Trip

The Cure in 1986
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While The Cure's very first appearance on the Billboard Hot 100 in 1986 didn’t end up being a long stay, it nonetheless proved to be only the first of many times that the band would make their way onto the American pop charts.

Written by Robert Smith and co-produced by Smith and Dave Allen, “In Between Days” – or possibly “Inbetween Days,” or maybe “In-Between Days,” depending on where you see it written – features a distinctive bass line, one which has caused the song to be compared more than a few times to New Order.

Indeed, even Peter Hook – yes, the bassist for New Order – said in an interview for the Red Bull Academy, “There’ve been bands like The Cure, where my mother has even said to me, ‘That sounds like you, Peter.’ But I take it as a compliment. What really bothered me about The Cure is when I saw the guy, and he was playing like me, which actually annoyed me more than him sounding like me, if that makes any sense. ‘You bastard!’”

The combination of acoustic guitars, synthesizer, and bass line made “In Between Days” into an irresistible pop concoction that even mainstream American audiences couldn’t completely ignore...although one could argue that they tried, since that aforementioned Hot 100 debut was at No. 99, after which the song dropped off the chart. (Other hits that made their debuts that week included The Outfield's "Your Love" and Level 42's "Something About You.")

Still, the fact that the Cure made it onto the Hot 100 at all was a major accomplishment for a band that had previously been known as “college rock” or “alternative rock” or whatever the preferred phrase was in your neck of the woods. Only two years later, the band would find their way into the American Top 40 for the first time...but that’s a story for another time.

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