This gig had been a long time coming - in fact I didn't truly believe I'd ever see The Cure live again, nor ever get the "real" experience of a three-hour show.
We saw The Cure at Livid 2000, a disappointingly short experience where they were forced to leave the stage after about an hour and fifteen minutes. The reason, ostensibly, was the concert had to stop due to noise restrictions - yet Lou Reed droned on for another 45 minutes on another stage. On the flip side, we did get to see 10:15 Saturday Night at 10:15 on a Saturday night (cheesy but fun!). Plus Green Day beforehand were actually quite amusing, including the legendary "Fuckin Dan!" moment.
(Set list from 2000... Main: out of this world, watching me fall, want, fascination street, open, the loudest sound, shake dog shake, from the edge of the deep green sea, inbetween days, trust, the kiss, prayers for rain, one hundred years, 39, bloodflowers. Encore: 10:15 saturday night, killing an arab.) From The Cure Concerts Guide
So anyway, last night's gig was just about everything I'd hoped for. It was a set list to please old fans, with tons of old songs I just didn't think would get played. I kept recognising the song they were about to play from the little tuning twangs while they swapped guitars :)
Sydney set list, updated as per the cure concerts guide:
(Tape as intro)
- Fascination Street
- From the Edge of the Deep Green Sea
- Kyoto Song
- The Blood
- The End of the World
- Us or Them
- The Walk
- A Letter To Elise
- Pictures Of You
- A Strange Day
- The Figurehead
- How Beautiful You Are
- InBetween Days
- Just Like Heaven
- If Only Tonight We Could Sleep
- The Kiss
- Shake Dog Shake
- Never Enough
- Wrong Number
- One Hundred Years
- Shiver & Shake
- Hot! Hot! Hot!
- Lets go to Bed
- Close to Me
- Why Cant I be You
- A Forest
- Boys Dont Cry
Robert closes with "See you again"
The lineup was three guitars plus drums. With no keyboard I knew from the start some songs would be out, which was a little disappointing (I have a dream of seeing them play Homesick). But then Porl produced sounds that weren't really meant to come out of a guitar, filling in for everything from violin to accordian. Impressive, although we did have to laugh at some of his fuckups - he wasn't having a perfect night :)
They teased me by not playing A Forest until the last encore. Price of admission right there. Sure, it wasn't one of their 20-minute jam versions, but I realised last night that I've wanted to hear A Forest live ever since a mate at high school described A Forest as played at the Wish Tour gig. That's over fifteen years ago!
Why yes, I am a huge Cure fanboy, thanks for asking :)
Last night also clarified something. I like the cure when they're boppy, I really like them when they're mopey, but I love them when they're angry. The Kiss + Shake Dog Shake blew my socks off. There must have been some trendies there last night who only knew the radio-friendly happy stuff, wondering what the hell was going on (and fuck them, eh!).
So anyway. Last night was about 3hrs 15min of pure treat. I was surprised when I looked at the Brisbane set list and realised there's still a stack of songs I'd dearly love to see live - Jumping Someone Else's Train, Fire In Cairo, Grinding Halt, At Night, M, anything off Faith... actually seeing them play their cover of Purple Haze would also be cool. They have such a massive back catalogue, no wonder their gigs run to three hours ;)
Robert Smith last night: "Never thought three hours would be too short..."
Couldn't agree more. I reckon another two hours might have just about done it ;)
Other random notes...
- Could have carried a small nuclear weapon in - no bag check whatsoever. If I'd known I'd have taken my camera and got some shots!
- Despite zero security check, they wouldn't sell you a bottle of water with a lid. What's up with that?
- Lots of people wearing colour. That's just WRONG, people ;)
- Overheard in the merch lineup: "The tshirts are all so goth, but I'm going to get one anyway." Colour me fucking surprised, the tshirts are a little goth! What gig did these people think they were attending? :)
- I am utterly tickled by the fact I now own a Cure stubby cooler. Cure stubby cooler, people! I can now be a goth yobbo.
- Best surprise of the night: old friends from Brisbane sitting one row away from us!
- Speaking of old friends... Nick has so firmly mashed The Walk and Blue Monday in my head that even at the gig, I couldn't help thinking of it.
- Weird thing about the gig: constant stream of people going in and out. I've never seen a gig where people so constantly churned in and out - some people must have spent more time at the bar outside than in the gig. Apparently though with the sheer volume, you could still listen perfectly well out there. It was loud, like LOUD.
- There was a woman a couple of rows down from us... conservatively dressed, looked like she was in her fifties maybe. But she went off, danced her butt off and had a whale of a time. Rock on!
Can't wait for them to come back :) Currently auditing the ipod and working out what I need to go and buy to replace the tapes which wore out years ago. Yep, tapes. I'm a Cure fan because of all the cassettes we traded at high school...