Pictures of You (The Cure song)

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"Pictures of You"
Pictures of You.jpg
Single by The Cure
from the album Disintegration
Released 19 March 1990
Format 7", 12", CD
Genre Gothic rock[1]
Length 4:48 (7")
7:59 (12")
6:40 (U.S. 12")
7:29 (album)[2]
Label Fiction
Songwriter(s) Boris Williams, Simon Gallup, Roger O'Donnell, Robert Smith, Porl Thompson and Lol Tolhurst
Producer(s) Robert Smith, Dave Allen
The Cure singles chronology
"Pictures of You"
"Never Enough"
"Pictures of You"
"Never Enough"
Music video
"Pictures Of You" on YouTube

"Pictures of You" is the fourth and final single from the British rock band the Cure's 1989 album Disintegration. Called "chilly goth-rock"[1] and "accessible...synth-pop",[3] the song has a single version which is a shorter edit of the album version. There are also two different remixes on two UK 12" singles, and other singles released around the world, one of which later appeared on Mixed Up as the Extended Dub Mix and differs significantly from the album version in arrangement in that incorporates wholly original drum and bass arrangements. The other is an extended remix of the original album version which, at 7:59, runs slightly longer than the album version. There is also an edit which was released on 12" in the US, titled "extended remix" as in the European and Australasian releases, but which runs for 6:40 rather than 7:59.

According to interviews, the inspiration of the song came when a fire broke loose in Robert Smith's home. After that day, Smith was going through the remains and came across his wallet which had pictures of his wife, Mary. The cover of the single is one of the pictures. The same picture was used as the cover of the "Charlotte Sometimes" single, but that version was heavily warped and distorted.

In 2011, the song was voted #283 on Rolling Stone's "The 500 Greatest Songs of All Time" list.[4]

Music video[edit]

The Tim Pope directed video was shot in Ballachulish, Scotland during the February 1990 "week of the big snow", with Robert Smith mentioning that he had never been colder before.[5]


  • Angie Hart's version was used for a TAC (Transport Accident Commission) ad campaign to combat speeding drivers.[6][7]
  • Lit covered the song for their 2004 eponymous album Lit.

In pop culture[edit]

  • The song appeared in several TV shows and films including in one episode of the series Mr. Robot.[8]
  • The song appeared in the last few seconds of a Casey Neistat video titled "Instagram i love you".
  • The song appeared in the 2012 film The Vow.

Track listing[edit]

7" single (1)
  1. "Pictures of You" (Single edit) – 4:46
  2. "Last Dance" (live) – 4:42[9]
7" single (2)
  1. "Pictures of You" (Single edit) – 4:46
  2. "Prayers for Rain" (live) – 4:48
12" single (1)
  1. "Pictures of You" (Extended version) – 8:07[10]
  2. "Last Dance" (live) – 4:41
  3. "Fascination Street" (live) – 5:23
12" single (2)
  1. "Pictures of You" (Strange mix) – 6:45[11]
  2. "Prayers for Rain" (live) – 4:48
  3. "Disintegration" (live) – 7:54
CD single
  1. "Pictures of You" (Single edit) – 4:46
  2. "Last Dance" (live) – 4:45
  3. "Fascination Street" (live) – 5:19
  4. "Prayers for Rain" (live) – 4:48
  5. "Disintegration" (live) – 7:54
CD single (2)
  1. "Pictures of You" (Single edit) – 4:46
  2. "Last Dance" (live) – 4:45
  3. "Fascination Street" (live) – 5:19

Chart performance[edit]

Chart (1990) Peak
Australia (ARIA Charts)[12] 89
Germany (GfK Entertainment) 18
Ireland (Irish Singles Chart) 9
UK Singles (Official Charts Company) 27
US Billboard (Hot Modern Rock Tracks) 19
US Billboard Hot 100[13] 71



  1. ^ a b Erlewine, Stephen Thomas (2002). Vladimir Bogdanov; Chris Woodstra; Stephen Thomas Erlewine, eds. All Music Guide to Rock: The Definitive Guide to Rock, Pop, and Soul. Hal Leonard Corporation. p. 276. ISBN 9780879306533. ...chilly goth-rock... 
  2. ^ Erlewine, Stephen Thomas. "The Cure – Galore: The Singles 1987–1997". Allmusic. Retrieved 27 December 2015. 
  3. ^ Apter, Jeff (2009-11-05). Never Enough: The Story of The Cure. Omnibus Press. ISBN 9780857120243. 
  4. ^ "Rolling Stone's 500 Greatest Songs Of All Time". Rolling Stone. April 7, 2011. Retrieved November 3, 2015. 
  5. ^ "Video Curiosities". 
  6. ^ TAC – Pictures of You
  7. ^ 'Pictures of You' TAC advertising campaign launched
  8. ^ Nate Scott (August 5, 2015). "5 things we learned from this week's episode of 'Mr. Robot'". For The Win. Retrieved September 27, 2016. 
  9. ^ Recorded live at Wembley, July '89
  10. ^ "Discogs: Cure, The – Pictures Of You". Retrieved 5 October 2013. 
  11. ^ This mix later appeared on the "Mixed Up" album as "Extended Dub Mix"
  12. ^ Ryan, Gavin (2011). Australia's Music Charts 1988–2010. Mt. Martha, VIC, Australia: Moonlight Publishing. 
  13. ^ "The Cure Chart History (Hot 100)". Billboard.

External links[edit]