Shallow Rewards

Shallow Rewards

Latest Episodes

The Cure: Curiosa, 4:13 Dream and Songs of a Lost World
January 08, 2023

Bringing the Shallow Rewards Cure podcasts up to date, this episode covers the last twenty years of the band: the 2004 self-titled LP, 4:13 Dream and my first impressions of the material likely to feature on the forthcoming Songs of a Lost World. This is

The Cure: Bloodflowers
September 08, 2021

On the unexpectedly estimable Bloodflowers, Robert Smiths legacy-saving last gasp as a songwriter; its tragically dated brick wall + Pro Tools production; and Smiths egotistical severing of ties with everyone whod helped fashion the Cure in its glory d

The Cure: Wild Mood Swings
August 23, 2021

On the tragic collapse of the Cure following the career-topping Wish, the various distractions that beset Wild Mood Swings, and how the persistent obstinance Robert Smith had relied on for so long finally failed him.Here’s the Vox article I reference in t

The Cure: Wish
July 20, 2021

On the Cures surfeit of activity between Disintegration and Wish; the 1992 smash albums highs and lows; and how for many fans, Wish remains a disappointment when set against the material that preceded it. Further to the podcast, please enjoy an essay I

The Smiths is Dead
June 13, 2021

Over a few drinks, and Stephen Kijaks calamitous Shoplifters of the World, Elliot Busch-Wheaton returns after a five-year hiatus to discuss the legacy of the Smiths and Morrissey in America. This is a public episode. If you would like to discuss this wit

The Cure: Blue Sunshine, the Banshees & The Top
February 23, 2021

On Robert Smith and Siouxsie and the Banshees brief, turbulent marriage; the side projects that outshone their combined efforts; and how from fall 1982 to fall 1984, Robert Smith lost the plot in order to find it again.Pursuant to this era are a few essa

The Cure: Pornography
February 17, 2021

On the rabid, raging fin de sicle of the Cures vaunted goth trilogy, Pornography; whether it is the singular statement the band and critics have increasingly claimed; and the murkier reality of Robert Smiths many extracurricular entanglements in 1982.S

The Cure: Faith
February 12, 2021

On the great grey Anglican monolith that is Faith, the Cures difficult third album; the inescapable shadow of Joy Divisions Closer; being branded the new PF; and whether any twenty-one year-old should be held to account for the quality of their poet

The Cure: Seventeen Seconds
February 09, 2021

On the Cures second album, the impossibly crisp Seventeen Seconds; its debatable debts to Joy Division, Siouxsie and the Banshees, Wire and Gary Numan; and the arrival of Robert Smith as a modern songwriter, but not yet a persona. An accompanying Spotify

From Ballyhoo to Britpop: XTC (Part 2)
October 06, 2019

On the improbable endurance of XTC, a band signed during the punk frenzy that would bring song-craft back to the fore in the early 1980s. Following a fractious period of financial instability and pressure from Virgin records, the band went on strike in th