Q (8/00, p.115) - 4 stars out of 5 - "...This compilation rocks ludicrously hard..."
CMJ (8/00, p.64) - "...The Cult had an alternative edge that distinguished them from other arena rockers of their era....[It] follows [their] rapid evolution from the goth psychedelia of their initial breakthrough...to the muscular AC/DC riffage of 'Wild Flower'..."
The Cult: Ian Astbury (vocals); Bob Rock (guitar, keyboards); Billy Duffy, James Stewart, James Stevenson (guitar); John Sinclair, Benmont Tench, John Webster, Richie Zito, Scott Humphrey (keyboards); Jaime Stewart, Haggis, Charley Drayton, Kinley Wolfe, Craig Adams (bass); Nigel Preston, Matt Sorum, Raymond Taylor-Smith, Scott Garrett, Michael Lee, Mickey Curry, Les Warner, Mark Brzezicki (drums).
Producers include: Steve Brown, Bob Rock, Rick Rubin, John Brand, Richie Zito.
Recorded between 1985 & 1996. Originally released on Beggars Banquet (130) IAN [43958 600130]. Includes liner notes by Dominic Wills.
Digitally remastered by John Dent (Loud Mastering).
The Cult, unlike its predecessor bands the Southern Death Cult and the Death Cult, was unapologetic about its mainstream rock & roll aspirations, which makes PURE CULT: THE SINGLES 1984-1995 the best possible starting place for the group, and for many, the logical end point as well. The Cult was a singles band, and a pretty great one, too, as evidenced by the Stones-like "Love Removal Machine" and the blazing "Fire Woman." The ensemble's mixture of '60s influences (no wonder Ian Astbury became the lead singer of the reformed Doors) and hard-rock power (no wonder drummer Matt Sorum went on to join Guns N' Roses) not only helped define a whole subset of the late-'80s alternative-rock scene, it's fair to say that the groups like Stone Temple Pilots owed at least some of their success to the Cult's early flirtations with the rock mainstream. Although the set isn't chronologically ordered, PURE CULT still gives a good sense of the band's surprisingly organic shift in sound, ranging from the gothy neo-psychedelia of "She Sells Sanctuary" to the sneering rock of "Star."