First it seemed like The Cure would never come. Then it seemed like they would never leave, not that anyone really wanted them to go.
After postponing their tour last fall, the iconic Robert Smith and The Cure returned to Utah Friday and gave fans just about everything they wanted. The band played a marathon three-hour show, delivering more than 30 radio hits, B-sides, songs off their upcoming new album and plenty of delightful darkness.
Smith, who played a lot of obscure Cure songs on the last tour appealing only to a small niche of hardcore fans, wasn't afraid to play some of the English quartet's biggest hits this time around.
The moderate-size crowd cheered loudly in appreciation for "Just Like Heaven," "Boys Don't Cry" and three big songs off the "Disintegration" album: "Lovesong," "Pictures of You" and "Lullaby."
Wearing his trademark red lipstick and eye shadow with his long scraggly hair, and dressed in black (no surprise), Smith was in fine voice all night despite telling the audience at Colorado's Red Rocks Amphitheatre two nights earlier that he was a bit under the weather.
Smith on Friday took frequent drinks at the drum riser between each song and kept his between-song banter to a bare minimum, but his voice stayed strong throughout the long set.
The crowd was a good mix of mainly high school and college-age students, and those who haven't been to high school or college in 20 years. They cheered loudly in appreciation for songs such as "Night Like This," "The Walk" and "Hot Hot Hot."
A fully display of lights and images projected onto four rectangle-shaped video screens that hung in the rear complemented the music. For "One Hundred Years," images of just about every high profile case of war or violence was shown on the screen.
The band is touring this time around without keyboards, giving the alt-rock outfit an appealing raw sound that worked well in concert.
On stage with Smith was longtime bassist Simon Gallup, drummer Jason Cooper and the androgenous Porl Thompson on guitar, with his leather pants, heavy eye makeup that resembled a mask and 8-inch heels.
Other highlights included "From the Edge of the Deep Green Sea," "Inbetween Days," "Never Enough," "Jumping on Someone Else's Train" and their the Cure's debut single, "Killing an Arab," which despite its controversial title is not about racism, but rather French philosopher Albert Camus' story, "The Stranger.