The Cure - Bloodflowers (Fiction) If this really is the last time, The Cure's main man, Robert Smith, has chosen a suitably high note on which to retire one of the most distinctive bands of the 1980s. On Bloodflowers, it all comes together gloriously - unusually muscular guitar, beefy drumming and synthesiser that doesn't meander too freely - to show The Cure for what they really were all along (behind all that eyeliner): a rock band. The backbone of this set is a perfectly judged feeling of restrained power - a power cranked up and released at precisely the right moments to produce something that sounds like the aural equivalent of VistaVision. It is huge, anthemic and sometimes booming, but also manages to be offset by Smith's introspection. Just when you are expecting a hefty production number, along comes some navel-gazing mawkishness and a bucketload of regret. But without that hand-wringing regret and glumness, it just wouldn't be The Cure: Smith didn't spend two decades being eccentric and refining his deadpan vocals to stray too far from the much-loved, Indie-friendly formula, especially in what may prove to be his finest 58 minutes. Strains of Led Zeppelin, Depeche Mode, Midnight Oil, The Mission . . . all are woven into Smith's wistful look back in wonder. All good things must come to an end in pop music: it is a pity the bad ones don't.