"Just Like Heaven" is a song by the British alternative rock band The Cure. The group wrote most of the song during recording sessions in southern France in 1987. The lyrics were written by the band's frontman Robert Smith, who drew inspiration from a past trip to the sea shore with his future wife. Before Smith had completed the lyrics, an instrumental version of the song was used as the theme for the French television show Les Enfants du Rock.
"Just Like Heaven" was the third single released from the band's 1987 album Kiss Me, Kiss Me, Kiss Me, while Smith's memories of the trip formed the basis for the song's accompanyingmusic video. The song became The Cure's first American hit and in 1988 reached number 40 on the Billboard charts. It has been praised by critics and covered by artists such as Dinosaur Jr., and Katie Melua. Smith has said he considers "Just Like Heaven" to be one of the band's strongest songs.Edit
Background and recordingEdit
In order to develop material for Kiss Me, Kiss Me, Kiss Me, Smith forced himself to write music for 15 days of each month. During this regimen, he developed the chords and melody which form the basis of "Just Like Heaven". Structurally, Smith found what he had written was similar to The Only Ones's 1978 hit "Another Girl, Another Planet". When he brought an instrumental demo of the song to the album recording sessions in Southern France, Cure drummer Boris Williams increased the tempo and added an opening drum fill which inspired Smith to introduce each instrument singularly and in sequence.
When the French TV show Les Enfants du Rock asked The Cure to provide a theme song, Smith offered the instrumental version. As he explained, "It meant the music would be familiar to millions of Europeans even before it was released". He completed the lyrics when the group moved the sessions to Studio Miraval, located in Le Val, Provence-Alpes-Côte d'Azur. The band completed the song quickly, and at the time Smith considered it to be the most obvious potential single from the songs the band had recorded during their two week stay at Miraval.
The music video for "Just Like Heaven" was directed by Tim Pope, who had directed all of the band's previous videos since 1982's "Let's Go to Bed". The video was filmed in England's Pinewood Studios in October 1987. Set on a cliff overlooking a sea, the video recreates many of the memories detailed in the song's lyrics. When a fanzine asked Smith what the song was about, he said it was inspired by "something that happened to me a long time ago—see the video!"[ While Smith had claimed for years that the video was shot at the same place that inspired the song, he later admitted that the bulk of it was filmed in a studio, utilising footage of the water and cliffs of Beachy Head taken for the band's 1985 video for "Close to Me".
During the song's piano solo the sky turns to nighttime and the band is shown clad in white shirts. Mary Poole appears in this sequence as a woman dressed in white dancing with Smith. As Smith explained, "Mary dances with me in the video because she was the girl [in the song], so it had to be her." Pope later commented, "[Poole] can honestly lay claim to being the only featured female in any Cure video, ever."