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The Cure
A Concert Review

July 20, 1996

The Rosemont Horizon

Rosemont, IL

A Review by
The Dude on the Right
So, I'm at the Rosemont Horizon to see The Cure, and I'm looking around, and this is what I see: Some very scary looking people in every age group, some not so scary looking people in every age group, and coming down the stairs was this drop-dead gorgeous blonde. Ohhhhh yeahhhh! There's an empty seat next to me and she's looking my way. Ohhhh yeahhhh! She's looking at her ticket, looking at the marks on the ground and looking my way again. Ohh yeahhh! She's walking down the isle, and down, and down, and on to the floor. Ohhh noooo. Just my luck, I'm flying solo looking for someone to talk to and the girl of my choice isn't sitting next to me. Figures.

Well, anyway, I'm sitting there waiting for the show and the seats in the place are starting to fill in. I'm checking out this cool, cosmic-looking stage that has a mutli-colored ceiling, these swooping things, things that look like ladders and train tracks and even Christmas lights. I wish I had photo clearance 'cuz this is one of the coolest looking stages I have seen in a while. But, too bad, go see the show yourself to see it. Meanwhile, I'm sitting there and trying to remember any Cure songs and I realize I really only know about three Cure songs by name, so this should be an interesting set-list. But I've always kind of liked The Cure. A friend of mine in college was a big Cure-head and played it constantly, so I was least familiar with the sounds. I eagerly waited in anticipation of a cool show, and even after the show started, I still eagerly waited because it took a little while for this cool show to develop.

This Cure show at the Horizon was almost doomed. Robert Smith and the band came out and I noticed that he wasn't as scary-looking as I had imagined. He almost looked respectable wearing a Chicago jersey, but there was still that aura of mysticism as he took the microphone. Lot's of fog surrounded the stage, and a cool spectacle of lights kicked the band into the first song, the "Any world's fire" song, and from what I could gather, most of the beginning of the show touched on a lot of earlier material, kept it slow, and really started to lose the interest of even the long-time Cure fans. Between the psychedelic films showing in the background to the dreamy-esque music, it took "Just Like Heaven" to kick the crowd back in. But then the band slowed down again and seemed to be taking longer breaks between songs. The loss of continuity almost brought a bad review because it wasn't just me who seemed to be losing touch with the music, but the crowd seemed more annoyed at the strobe and stage lights than using it to get in the music. So a show that had a lot of potential, especially if that cute blonde had the seat next to me, started to look like a real downer, especially for the fans. But that started to change, or so I thought.

Somewhere in the middle of the show, the band, well at least Robert Smith and the bass player, started to look like they were actually having fun. And the crowd started to respond. "Friday I'm in Love" seemed to be the start of an awakening of both the crowd and the band, but then, they slowed it down again for a few songs and the fans lost interest again. Me, I was having a hard time figuring what I was going to rate this band on a roller-coaster ride of emotion (how's that for a little saying, huh?). Right now it almost looked like a one-thumb downer. I was kinda bummed.

Then came one of the world's longest encores, and that one thumb down started to turn. Finally, Mr. Smith got from behind the microphone, started walking around the stage, and the crowd woke up quicker than a college kid late for a final exam. The entire band seemed to wake up also, and I could see a brighter review on the horizon, as long as they didn't do something stupid. The didn't. Good musical jams, a little bit more of personality, and even if I had no idea what these songs were, even the kinda slower ones, I had fun, and the crowd, who at one time almost looked ready for a long winter's nap, left the Horizon saying this show was pretty cool. Pretty cool.

I'm torn between a one thumb upper and a two thumb upper, but I think I'll go with the two. Yep, it's TWO THUMBS UP for the Cure. I guess a couple of things kicked that last thumb in, one being the fact the band played for over 2 hours with no opening act. Even though the show was kind of slow, and they seemed to touch on a lot of obscure stuff that only the die-hard fans seemed to know, they did touch on a lot of obscure stuff that only the die-hard fans seemed to know. I think there wouldn't have been the hesitation if Robert Smith had moved from behind his microphone a little sooner. I think the crowd would have gotten into the entire show with a little bit more interaction from the band, but maybe that isn't what the Cure is about. But, I will tell you this, it's a good thing Mr. Smith moved around in the end because as a band, they didn't seem to have the stuff to captivate a crowd by standing in one place. I guess that's kind of hard to explain, but I think you get the idea.

All in all, though, especially for the end, it was a good show, and the band is much more musically talented than I imagined. I like that.

That's it for this one. I'm the Dude on the Right. L8R!


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