Sonic Temple

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Sonic Temple
The Cult Sonic Temple.jpg
Studio album by
ReleasedApril 10, 1989
RecordedSeptember - November 1988
StudioLittle Mountain Sound Studios, Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada
LabelBeggars Banquet, Sire
ProducerBob Rock
The Cult chronology
Sonic Temple
Singles from Sonic Temple
  1. "Fire Woman"
    Released: March 13, 1989
  2. "Edie (Ciao Baby)"
    Released: June 26, 1989
  3. "Sun King"
    Released: November 6, 1989
  4. "Sweet Soul Sister"
    Released: February 26, 1990

Sonic Temple is the fourth studio album by The Cult, released in 1989. Continuing in the hard rock direction introduced on their previous album, Sonic Temple features some of the band's most popular songs, including "Fire Woman", "Sun King", "Edie (Ciao Baby)" and "Sweet Soul Sister". Sonic Temple was the last album recorded with longtime bassist Jamie Stewart, who left in 1990, and the first to feature former Hall & Oates and then-current Bryan Adams drummer, Mickey Curry.

Album information[edit]

During 1988, The Cult recorded the first (14 track) demo version of this album with Eric Singer (of Kiss) on drums. Later on, they tracked a new demo version of the record (15 songs) with Chris Taylor (drummer for the Bob rock band). Sonic Temple marked the first time the band worked with Bob Rock, who would later produce The Cult, Beyond Good and Evil, Choice of Weapon and Hidden City. The album reached the Cult's highest chart position in the US, peaking at #10 on the Billboard 200 charts, and was certified Platinum by the RIAA in 1993.

In Argentina, the record was released as Templo Sonico with the titles translated into Spanish on the jacket sleeve and record labels. In Taiwan it was released with a pink cover; reportedly some of these were also found in mainland China.

The album cover features guitarist Billy Duffy with his Gibson Les Paul, partially obscuring a picture of vocalist Ian Astbury. The back cover features bassist Jamie Stewart, and an additional illustration on the insert, from left to right, features Astbury, Duffy, and Stewart.

Professional ratings
Review scores
AllMusic3.5/5 stars link
Rolling Stone3/5 stars link

Track listing[edit]

All tracks written by Ian Astbury and Billy Duffy.

  1. "Sun King" – 6:09
  2. "Fire Woman" – 5:11
  3. "American Horse" – 5:19
  4. "Edie (Ciao Baby)" – 4:46
  5. "Sweet Soul Sister" – 5:08
  6. "Soul Asylum" – 7:26
  7. "New York City" – 4:41
  8. "Automatic Blues" – 3:51
  9. "Soldier Blue" – 4:36
  10. "Wake Up Time for Freedom" – 5:17

Bonus tracks[edit]

  • "Medicine Train" – 4:42 (On CD and, in some countries, cassette release)
  • "The River" (Only on Russian and Eastern European pressings)
  • "Lay Down your Gun" (Version two) (Only on Russian and Eastern European pressings)

Saudi Arabian version[edit]

There was a Saudi Arabian version released, with the track listing expanded (although "Soul Asylum" had been removed) and slightly rearranged:

  1. "Sun King"
  2. "Fire Woman"
  3. "American Horse"
  4. "Edie (Ciao Baby)"
  5. "Sweet Soul Sister"
  6. "NYC"
  7. "Automatic Blues"
  8. "Soldier Blue"
  9. "Wake Up Time for Freedom"
  10. "Medicine Train"
  11. "Electric Ocean"
  12. "King Contrary Man"
  13. "Born to Be Wild"
  14. "Outlaw"


Additional personnel[edit]


Album - BPI UK Album Chart (UK) Billboard (United States)

Year Chart Position
1989 BPI UK Album Chart 3
The Billboard 200 10

Singles - Billboard (United States)

Year Single Chart Position
1989 "Fire Woman" BPI UK Top 40 15
Billboard Hot 100 46
Modern Rock Tracks 2
Mainstream Rock Tracks 4
"Sun King" BPI UK Top 40 39
Mainstream Rock Tracks 18
Modern Rock Tracks 21
"Edie (Ciao Baby)" BPI UK Top 40 32
Billboard Hot 100 93
Mainstream Rock Tracks 17
1990 "Sweet Soul Sister" Mainstream Rock Tracks 14