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THE CURE ISN’T RETICENT ABOUT SLAMMING OTHER ROCK BANDS

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Some rockers avoid saying anything disparaging about another group. Not The Cure.

"We were kept off No. 1 by someone as redundant as Def Leppard," says singer-lyricist Robert Smith. The Cure's new LP is "Wish." Def Leppard has been heating up the charts with "Adrenalize.""I'm staggered how popular Def Leppard are," Smith said in a recent interview. "To the casual listener they sound exactly like the last album. I try desperately to avoid hearing them. But sitting at a traffic light, through open car windows, you sometimes hear them.

"Def Leppard sings with an American accent. They conduct interviews in a semi-Atlantic drawl, talking like they were born in Dallas.

"I'll alienate the heavy metal side of our audience now. We had a review in one British paper saying we were the best heavy metal band in the world. Our guitarist, Porl, was extremely happy about that. We had a particularly noisy night that night."