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The Cure "40 Live Curaetion 25 + Anniversary" Deluxe Box Set

Started by dsanchez, August 05, 2019, 22:15:17

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SueC

Well, our box set, after being officially delayed, arrived at the very last moment on Christmas Eve, only just getting here by a whisker for the Christmas night viewing we'd planned months ago. We were already discussing alternative plans in case it didn't turn up.  :angel  :angel

At the moment we have peak daylight in Australia, and it's not dark till after 8pm, so we often get in late, and this afternoon we went to a lovely beach called Cosy Corner to make Christmas more memorable. So, to cut a long story short, don't start watching a Cure concert at 9pm and expect to finish it unless you're prepared to run into the wee hours. which we really aren't well advised to do just now with all the sleep deprivation we had because of that mutated bug that beset our respiratory organs recently, grrrrr.  :1f635:

So, we've watched half of the Hyde Park concert so far, before we had to retire for the night.  We were both super impressed with the sound quality, both from a sound reproduction perspective, and in terms of the sound being produced by the band.  I've watched quite a bit of live Cure, and yet as this concert got underway, I was just struck anew by what a fabulous live band this lot is. They could play bands half their age into the ground.  They sound even better than they did on Trilogy nearly 20 years ago.  They haven't become caricatures of themselves and show that you can be a person, so far over and above being an age.

I enjoy a lot of good live music, but there's something about this band that just hits the stratosphere for me in a way that other contemporary bands usually do not.  The Cure live is very like our ACO live - the Australian Chamber Orchestra also, at least when I saw them, was just dead impressive with their musicianship and the chemistry and communication between the players; with the extraordinary sounds they kept coming up with; with how that transferred to the audience.

The Cure don't play like most contemporary bands - they play more like chamber orchestras do, cooperatively to make a sound that's a whole, rather than playing bit-parts.  They create soundscapes you can immerse yourself in, and conjure up so much with this.  It is such a thoroughly enjoyable experience to hear what they do live on stage.

It's the first time we've seen a Cure gig that started in actual daylight.  You can really understand why once they begin they often go on for long periods of time by peer standards.

I'll have to append this tomorrow, eyes falling shut!

Appending:

Great way to spend Christmas night, snuggled up on the sofa with your favourite person, and the lights on the Christmas tree blinking gently in the far visual field, and this long-awaited treat playing.  Our version is the Blu-Ray and came in a square package that reminded us fossils of LPs.  It's all beautifully presented, and sturdy, and the people who sent it to us even used all-compostable packaging (which went straight into our compost to improve its C:N ratio) and no waste plastic.  If I had to make complaints, I would have two: 

1) I would like to make all graphic designers who think it's a great idea to print text in low-contrast colours (e.g. orange on pink background), and to overlap print to look arty, take an ice bath in Siberia - you know the ones, where people cut a hole in the ice and dive in and come out purple.  My husband, who is a trained graphic designer, suggests a more severe punishment:  That they be doomed to only use Comic Sans MS for the rest of their lives - suicide or psychosis would swiftly follow... :evil:  It's bad enough to try to decipher stuff like this when you've got decently elastic lenses, but once you start needing reading glasses (us, this year), that kind of proposition becomes painful and frustrating and results in much cursing and disgruntlement.  :1f629:

2) It would have been nice to get some sit-and-talk special features, like on the Trilogy set, and perhaps a historical overview of the Meltdown festival.  (I may eat my words because we've not looked at the second disc, but there's nothing on the track listing.)

Anyway, back to our lovely Christmas night, and the moment we put the disc into the system and sat back:  The first thing I noticed was the camerawork, which started out from a behind-the-band point of view, and that's a nice way to begin because a good concert is like a good conversation, where both points of view are valuable.  Showing this perspective is a good reminder:  This is a human interaction, both between the people cooperating to make the music, and also between the musicians and the audience who has turned up to enjoy hearing it.  Also I very much commend that in this and other Cure concert films I've seen, the "rock star" type shots have been avoided - you know the ones, from a low camera angle looking up at a great height and "look at me" - the worst of that type I've seen have the performers' crotches as their focal point, and I find that highly distasteful.  :smth011   This film is filmed like a good Attenborough wildlife documentary - it allows you to observe the life forms going about their normal business in their natural habitat, and does it unobtrusively.  :angel

On observing the wildlife, I had two immediate impressions:  First of all, that at least one of them is normally a nocturnal animal, and had emerged blinking into the sunlight because necessitated by unusual circumstances to do so.  Secondly, that one of them is a particularly high-energy variety who appears to have a very effective metabolism that gives him kinetic advantages compared to the other animals.

We always smile at Simon Gallup's roaming all over the place during a performance.  I imagine he would have been the sort of toddler who was forever racing around and getting into all the cupboards.  On the nominative determinism thread, I've given him an award for the way he "gallups" all over the stage during a concert, sometimes reminiscent of a bicycle courier industriously making deliveries to various places.  The other members seem to enjoy his visits; clearly he's delivering good vibes.  This results in some very nice on-stage interactions.  Whether it's The Cure or the ACO or anyone else playing sublime music live, I always love the moments when they catch each other's eyes and smile, or cue each other.

Speaking of, I think it's so nice to see how relaxed these people are these days on stage.  I imagine Reeves Gabrels was born relaxed and Buddha-like, or else acquired this trait many years ago.  Calm just seems to emanate from him like water from one of those Japanese water features, and he's like the perpetual cool cat.  Brett was disappointed by being able to see through his glasses at one point, "I don't want to see his eyes! Just his glasses!"  Some people have strange wishes.  :)  He also thought Simon Gallup had lost a bet with someone because of the colour of his bass.  My own thoughts are that if you're secure in your masculinity, you don't need to not own pink things.  Personally I really hate pink stuff for myself and have since before age 3, and had many battles over the colour with my mother - but if I were male, I'd probably go the opposite way and like it, I mean, Iconoclasm 101...

Brett is making a hobby of freezing frames on Simon Gallup's tattoos to study them in depth, and reading all sorts of Dr Who messages into them which may or may not be real.  (My husband is a complete Dr Who obsessive.)  He thinks one of the tattoos is the logo of one of the publishers of classic Dr Who novelisations, and is wondering if the rose is a reference to one of the companions - that one I think is a really long, long shot and rather unbecoming... but we're both pretty sure that the Bad Wolf reference goes with the bassist - and for non-Dr Who obsessives, that's a reference to an episode called exactly that, but also to a really excellent one called The Day Of The Doctor:


It really struck me again, watching the concert last night, how significant the bass playing - and the personality of that bass playing - is in The Cure's music.  It carries the music to a great extent, and it's more than just a part of an excellent rhythm section - it's frequently part of an intertwining of melodies and textures. The way the two guitars and bass work together is so often very like the way double bass, cellos, violas and violins work together in a string quartet.  I have very little formal musical education - just some basic school curriculum stuff, and three years of taking violin lessons in my late 20s / early 30s, which were mostly playing by ear, and only going back for another lesson when I got stuck - so I don't have specialist vocabulary in that area, and I certainly don't sight-read sheet music (I decipher it very slowly, with help).  Therefore, when I write about music, I just try to describe it in ordinary terms.  When I run into people with specialist vocabulary, I turn them into Swiss cheeses, so beware!  ;)

Brett has particular soft spots for Burn, The Edge Of The Deep Green Sea, and Shake Dog Shake (and pretty much anything off The Top and Bloodflowers), so was very happy to see all of these in the Hyde Park set.  He also much enjoyed If Only Tonight We Could Sleep because of its Eastern flavours and general construction.  I think the lyrics on that make great stand-alone poetry - but even more effective with the music.

If I keep sitting here tapping at the keyboard this is going to become a novel, so I'm going to try to wind up (for now, as we've only watched half of that particular gig).  So, I'm just going to add how nice it is when you get the impression that a band is really enjoying playing, which we certainly did watching this film.  Robert Smith was positively theatrical, and far more inclined to move than when he was a younger person, and smiling broadly on numerous occasions.  Reeves Gabrels seemed to hum with bonhomie, and Roger O'Donnell got very close to head-banging in time with his contribution.  Simon Gallup was, if possible, even more animated than normal, and Jason Cooper, even under the duress of drumming - which has got to be the most physically demanding job in the group - managed a very memorable 1000 Watt smile at one of the others.  When they did Never Enough, it was pure street theatre.  :lol:

There will be more to follow when we get a chance to finish watching, but that will be in a follow-up post!
SueC is time travelling

jestoon425

Quote from: SueC on December 25, 2019, 17:31:34Well, our box set, after being officially delayed, arrived at the very last moment on Christmas Eve, only just getting here by a whisker for the Christmas night viewing we'd planned months ago. We were already discussing alternative plans in case it didn't turn up.  :angel  :angel

At the moment we have peak daylight in Australia, and it's not dark till after 8pm, so we often get in late, and this afternoon we went to a lovely beach called Cosy Corner to make Christmas more memorable. So, to cut a long story short, don't start watching a Cure concert and expect to finish it unless you're prepared to run into the wee hours. which we really aren't well advised to do just now with all the sleep deprivation we had because of that mutated bug that beset our respiratory organs recently, grrrrr.  :1f635:

So, we've watched half of the Hyde Park concert so far, before we had to retire for the night.  We were both super impressed with the sound quality, both from a sound reproduction perspective, and in terms of the sound being produced by the band.  I've watched quite a bit of live Cure, and yet as this concert got underway, I was just struck anew by what a fabulous live band this lot is. They could play bands half their age into the ground.  They sound even better than they did on Trilogy nearly 20 years ago.  They haven't become caricatures of themselves and show that you can be a person, so far over and above being an age.

I enjoy a lot of good live music, but there's something about this band that just hits the stratosphere for me in a way that other contemporary bands usually do not.  The Cure live is very like our ACO live - the Australian Chamber Orchestra also, at least when I saw them, was just dead impressive with their musicianship and the chemistry and communication between the players; with the extraordinary sounds they kept coming up with; with how that transferred to the audience.

The Cure don't play like most contemporary bands - they play more like chamber orchestras do, cooperatively to make a sound that's a whole, rather than playing bit-parts.  They create soundscapes you can immerse yourself in, and conjure up so much with this.  It is such a thoroughly enjoyable experience to hear what they do live on stage.

It's the first time we've seen a Cure gig that started in actual daylight.  You can really understand why once they begin they often go on for long periods of time by peer standards.

I'll have to append this tomorrow, eyes falling shut!

Wait til you see Curaetion 25 - it's even better :). Watched it last night, and I think I love it more than The Trilogy film as well. Might even be tied with Show as the best Cure live document
But it's much too late you say
For doing this now
We should have done it then
Well it just goes to show
How wrong you can be
And how you really should know
That it's never too late
To get up and go

SueC

Hello @jestoon425, welcome to the forum, and Merry Christmas! 🎄  :)

Last night we left off after The Edge Of The Deep Green Sea, and right now I just feel like rewinding and watching again from the start (and having an evening where we start early enough to actually finish the whole concert).  It's like when you read a really good book and when you get to the last page, you just want to start all over again. :cool 

We're looking forward to all of it and it's nice to know the high standard is going to continue.

If you do an Intro post in the New Members section, by the way, we could get to know you a little better and then it's easier to treat people on a page like real human beings!  :)
SueC is time travelling

jestoon425

Quote from: SueC on December 26, 2019, 00:44:18Hello @jestoon425, welcome to the forum, and Merry Christmas! 🎄  :)

Last night we left off after The Edge Of The Deep Green Sea, and right now I just feel like rewinding and watching again from the start (and having an evening where we start early enough to actually finish the whole concert).  It's like when you read a really good book and when you get to the last page, you just want to start all over again. :cool 

We're looking forward to all of it and it's nice to know the high standard is going to continue.

If you do an Intro post in the New Members section, by the way, we could get to know you a little better and then it's easier to treat people on a page like real human beings!  :)

Oooh Thank you Sue. I know exactly what you mean. And especially when it's The Cure - the music lends itself very nicely to repeated listening :). Merry Christmas! The Edge Of The Deep Green Sea is a great place to leave off. Though I'm not sure I could sleep right after that one ;). Might have to meditate to "A Thousand Hours" or "Siamese Twins" to wind down haha
But it's much too late you say
For doing this now
We should have done it then
Well it just goes to show
How wrong you can be
And how you really should know
That it's never too late
To get up and go

SueC

Oh haha, you are funny!  :lol:  Maybe you could also meditate to One Hundred Years or Babble or - I'm sorry, it's 38 degrees C here today and my brain is affected, so half my recall, including of suitable songs, is missing, and I know there's even more highly suitable meditation-friendly stuff!  ;)  For now, I'm trying to keep my short-term memory alive so I can finish the response post up there properly...

By the way, my husband actually curled up like a kitten and fell asleep during The Edge Of The Deep Green Sea last night, and it's one of his favourite songs!  :)  (Although on further questioning lately, he's never really heard half the lyrics - he's less into that aspect of sung music than I am.)  Anyway, I thought I was going to need to get the wheelbarrow to transport him to bed!  :rofl
SueC is time travelling

jestoon425

Upadate: I'm officially hooked on Curaetion 25. What a magical viewing experience  :angel
But it's much too late you say
For doing this now
We should have done it then
Well it just goes to show
How wrong you can be
And how you really should know
That it's never too late
To get up and go

SueC

Well, we're just about to watch the second half of the Hyde Park concert - having started too late in the night on Christmas night.  :)  However, I want to start from the beginning - since we're doing a daytime viewing this time - and it sort of feels wrong to start in the middle, plus the first half was so good I'd like to see it again anyway.   :cool

I've seen Disintegration from the other disc though and it's very well done.  :smth023

What I don't get is how they actually managed to improve on Trilogy, which itself was fabulous.  Brett thinks it's having nearly two decades more practice... hahaha.   :beaming-face 

As a teenager I was not a fan of Just Like Heaven which was all over the radio back then (or The Cure in general- had I heard things like The Edge Of The Deep Green Sea or Fascination Street or Trust or Fear Of Ghosts or other things like that, I would have formed a very different view of this band back then, but I didn't) - but live it's fine, and I appreciate that it's played with more of an edge to it these days and the guitar is less treacly (thankyou Reeves Gabrels).  It's interesting how even songs I actually dislike when I hear the studio versions transform live, and then I actually don't dislike them anymore.

SueC is time travelling

jestoon425

Quote from: SueC on December 26, 2019, 06:32:53By the way, my husband actually curled up like a kitten and fell asleep during The Edge Of The Deep Green Sea last night, and it's one of his favourite songs!  :) 

"Kitten as a cat? *meow*" ;)

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TBkY0xCLa0Q
But it's much too late you say
For doing this now
We should have done it then
Well it just goes to show
How wrong you can be
And how you really should know
That it's never too late
To get up and go

jestoon425

Quote from: SueC on December 28, 2019, 03:40:27Well, we're just about to watch the second half of the Hyde Park concert - having started too late in the night on Christmas night.  :)  However, I want to start from the beginning - since we're doing a daytime viewing this time - and it sort of feels wrong to start in the middle, plus the first half was so good I'd like to see it again anyway.   :cool

I've seen Disintegration from the other disc though and it's very well done.  :smth023

What I don't get is how they actually managed to improve on Trilogy, which itself was fabulous.  Brett thinks it's having nearly two decades more practice... hahaha.   :beaming-face 

As a teenager I was not a fan of Just Like Heaven which was all over the radio back then (or The Cure in general- had I heard things like The Edge Of The Deep Green Sea or Fascination Street or Trust or Fear Of Ghosts or other things like that, I would have formed a very different view of this band back then, but I didn't) - but live it's fine, and I appreciate that it's played with more of an edge to it these days and the guitar is less treacly (thankyou Reeves Gabrels).  It's interesting how even songs I actually dislike when I hear the studio versions transform live, and then I actually don't dislike them anymore.



That version of Disintegration <3. Pretty much puts to bed any notions of Jason Cooper being a "bad" drummer. He's up there with Boris now :)
But it's much too late you say
For doing this now
We should have done it then
Well it just goes to show
How wrong you can be
And how you really should know
That it's never too late
To get up and go

SueC

Don't get me started on that, @jestoon425.  I never had a problem with Jason Cooper as a drummer, and when we were watching the Hyde Park concert, both of us were watching that closely and concluding that certain people need their head examining.


Quote from: jestoon425 on December 28, 2019, 03:41:40
Quote from: SueC on December 26, 2019, 06:32:53By the way, my husband actually curled up like a kitten and fell asleep during The Edge Of The Deep Green Sea last night, and it's one of his favourite songs!  :) 

"Kitten as a cat? *meow*" ;)


I am afraid I need to post an erratum.  :lol:  Brett was displeased to be referred to in that language in public, so for the record, he's officially a growly bear. :cool  We both agree on that (he's a very cute growly bear, but don't tell him I said that! :lol:).


Growly bear in natural habitat with growly bear-sized mug of tea
SueC is time travelling

SueC

...OK, something I'm noticing about the setlist on starting again from the beginning.  Last time we noticed that there was a sandwiching of less generally well-known songs between more well-known songs, and it makes sense to play a concert for the whole mix of fans in this way.  It's a Mary Poppins principle, if you're trying to bend the ears of the fans of the more radio-friendly stuff towards the more serious music.  But today it struck me that there is also this alternation between no-complications love songs, and love songs dealing with conflict and discord, for at least the first 11 songs.  It's one of one, one of the other; and then two of one (Push and In-Between Days) and two of the other (Just Like Heaven, If Only Tonight We Could Sleep which I do see as not beset by particular complications and I'm happy to discuss it, and anything else).

Second time around, I'm even more appreciative of how this was filmed, because I'm noticing more - and isn't that stage just gorgeous, with the oaks framing it and making a canopy above!  :heart-eyes
SueC is time travelling

jestoon425

Quote from: SueC on December 28, 2019, 06:41:34...OK, something I'm noticing about the setlist on starting again from the beginning.  Last time we noticed that there was a sandwiching of less generally well-known songs between more well-known songs, and it makes sense to play a concert for the whole mix of fans in this way.  It's a Mary Poppins principle, if you're trying to bend the ears of the fans of the more radio-friendly stuff towards the more serious music.  But today it struck me that there is also this alternation between no-complications love songs, and love songs dealing with conflict and discord, for at least the first 11 songs.  It's one of one, one of the other; and then two of one (Push and In-Between Days) and two of the other (Just Like Heaven, If Only Tonight We Could Sleep which I do see as not beset by particular complications and I'm happy to discuss it, and anything else).

Second time around, I'm even more appreciative of how this was filmed, because I'm noticing more - and isn't that stage just gorgeous, with the oaks framing it and making a canopy above!  :heart-eyes

The way it was filmed adds to the experience 100%. I've seen great Cure performances before on bootleg live streams, and while the music was great, the visuals were always a bit anemic. Both of these films remind us of what The Cure offer visually <3.
But it's much too late you say
For doing this now
We should have done it then
Well it just goes to show
How wrong you can be
And how you really should know
That it's never too late
To get up and go

jestoon425

But it's much too late you say
For doing this now
We should have done it then
Well it just goes to show
How wrong you can be
And how you really should know
That it's never too late
To get up and go

SueC

That's a well-written, interesting piece, @jestoon425 - thanks for sharing! :cool 

Potted history before the next bit:  Brett became interested in The Cure when he heard Burn in the soundtrack watching The Crow in the cinema in 1994 and he eventually bought Paris because of it, to dip his toes into their music and see what else they did - he tends to buy a live album when he's trying out a "new" band.  He liked that, and went and bought Show, and later on Bloodflowers and a best-of.  I became interested when Brett lent me his iPod five years ago for some outdoors work and I was scrolling through artists and surprised (because of the poppy image I had in my head) that he listened to The Cure.  I put on Bloodflowers and my jaw just hit the ground... (now making my way through the back catalogue)

So that's to say:  We have the live recordings of Show and Paris - but not the films; neither of us go that far back historically as fans.  Do we have homework?
SueC is time travelling

jestoon425

Quote from: SueC on December 29, 2019, 01:35:23That's a well-written, interesting piece, @jestoon425 - thanks for sharing! :cool 

Potted history before the next bit:  Brett became interested in The Cure when he heard Burn in the soundtrack watching The Crow in the cinema in 1994 and he eventually bought Paris because of it, to dip his toes into their music and see what else they did - he tends to buy a live album when he's trying out a "new" band.  He liked that, and went and bought Show, and later on Bloodflowers and a best-of.  I became interested when Brett lent me his iPod five years ago for some outdoors work and I was scrolling through artists and surprised (because of the poppy image I had in my head) that he listened to The Cure.  I put on Bloodflowers and my jaw just hit the ground... (now making my way through the back catalogue)

So that's to say:  We have the live recordings of Show and Paris - but not the films; neither of us go that far back historically as fans.  Do we have homework?

Thanks Sue! Let me clarify one little thing; Only Show was filmed. Paris is only a live album. The live album of Show is the soundtrack from the film :). I would definitely recommend hunting down a Laserdisc rip of Show as it's one of the best concert documentaries I've ever seen. Some great shots of Boris too, which is impressive since he's usually way in the back on footage from his time as drummer.
But it's much too late you say
For doing this now
We should have done it then
Well it just goes to show
How wrong you can be
And how you really should know
That it's never too late
To get up and go