Hard to believe the Cure are still kicking. Their output may not be as vital as it once was, but they remain endearing to their fans and a touchstone of a very profound period in many people's lives. The awkward adolescence stage when you're trying to find yourself. Robert Smith was the poster child for that. They bridged the transition from listening to top 40 radio as a kid to venturing outside the lines as a young adult and deciding you liked it better out there.
I went in with a mental wish list of songs I wanted to hear. "Hot Hot Hot", "In Between Days", "Never Enough", "... Edge of the Deep Green Sea", "Disintegration", "The Walk" and "Fascination Street" all of which were played except for Street. It's such a bonus when you see a popular band with hours and hours of hits and they hit the ones you were hoping for. Much of the show remained in the murky, highly emotional hues of dark blues, greys, greens and blacks of the Disintegration and Wish years. They probably played half of the songs from those albums. That's the stuff I could listen to for days. Give me 8 minutes of a Cure tidal wave of melancholy and I'm feeling groovy. The good old hits were sprinkled in here and there to keep people on their toes.
They came back for 3 encores and the last two dove deeper into the catalog. The band was only a four piece (with some obviously prerecorded synth stuff happening) which stifled songs like "Why Can't I Be You" and "Close to Me" which rely so heavily on keyboards and horns. It wasn't the same hearing them recreated on the guitar. Too hard. But, it was perfect for the final encore all of which were hits from their first album. It began with "Boys Don't Cry", then "Jumping Someone Else's Train", "10:15 Saturday Night" and "Killing An Arab" as a closer. It summed up the night perfectly. Kick it off with where we are now, and end it with where we came from. Something for everybody.
My one complaint was that there needed to be big screens. Every big show has screens so everyone can see close-ups, but this didn't. We were on row 46, about 2/3 of the way in, but it still would have been nice to see Robert's face and check out his hair and make up.
Everyone should see one show at Red Rocks in their lives. It's the greatest venue in the world. Check out this clip of U2 there that you've all seen to get my meaning. The best part of the night was having Farrah with me. We never get to do stuff like that together. Either it isn't a band she wants to see, or it's too expensive, or the baby gets in the way. This time, we made it happen, we got a sitter and we found cheap tix and that made for a perfect evening. We also went with our friends, the Montroys, who graciously saved us a great seat. Doesn't get better than that.