Utrecht 1982 – the sculpture picture

Today exactly 35 years ago The Cure played at the Muziekcentrum Vredenburg in my hometown Utrecht. It was then and there where this well-known picture of The Cure was taken. However, I only realised this about ten years ago!

One day I was cycling along the backside of Utrecht Central Station, when I suddenly recognised this sculpture in combination with the sports hall behind it as the setting for this Cure photo. The sculpture is called ‘De Reis‘ (1971), which means ‘The Journey’. It is a creation of artist Paul Kingma.

At the time this part of the city was a bit of a concrete jungle. Across the street there is a hotel, formerly the Holiday Inn. Possibly The Cure were staying there for their gig of 10 May 1982. I imagine on the evening of the concert they went outside and took this photo shoot. The first two pictures below are from 2010 when it still looked quite the same as in 1982. The surroundings of the station have changed drastically since then, in a positive sense. The third picture shows how it looks today. The area is still under construction. Unfortunately the sculpture has been removed. No idea where it is now. We should ask the municipality to put it back because it’s a sacred place for Cure fans 😉

For a full retrospective coverage of the Pornography Tour 1982, please visit this great blog from my friend Guillaume.

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Ascension 1984

Countdown84-3The Cure spent quite some time around Ascension 1984, at the end of May and the beginning of June, in the Netherlands. It was the week in which Robert Smith was on the verge of a mental breakdown, forcing him to cancel the upcoming tour with Siouxsie & the Banshees and to take a break away from The Cure. Despite his state of mind, Robert delivered three powerful shows with The Cure in the Netherlands, with two of them on one day (!), and did a promo performance of the new single The Caterpillar for Dutch national TV. To understand what was going on that week, I think you would have to look back at about a year and a half before.

Since the last quarter of 1982, Robert Smith had been working non-stop with three bands. Next to The Cure, he became a guitarist with Siouxsie & the Banshees, recorded the hit single Dear Prudence with them, the live double LP/video Nocturne and their new studio album Hyaena. They had toured the UK and Europe in Autumn 1982, then Japan, New Zealand, Australia, some European festivals and Israel in 1983 and Europe again at the start of 1984. In the meantime, Robert had also formed a side project with Banshees-bassist Steven Severin called The Glove and recorded the album Blue Sunshine, released in August 1983. On top of it all, he kept The Cure going. Robert and Lol had recorded a string of singles with accompanying videos, did some shows as a four piece in the UK and the USA in the Summer of 1983 and then toured the UK and Europe again in Spring 1984. In addition, Robert had written and recorded the new Cure LP The Top, which was pretty much a solo effort. He had also helped out video director Tim Pope with his single I Want To Be A Tree. One can imagine he couldn’t carry on like this.

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More Utrecht 1984 and Pinkpop 1986 pictures

PP86-2Some nice photos of The Cure live at the Muziekcentrum Vredenburg in Utrecht 31 May 1984 and at Pinkpop 1986. Here are the links:

Utrecht 1984: 1234

Pinkpop 1986: 1234

On this Sisters of Mercy fanpage there are lots of other rare live photos, like from Siouxsie & the Banshees at the Seaside Festival (Belgium) ’85 and at the Jaap Edenhal in Amsterdam on 23 April 1986.

Thanks to My Dominion NL for putting his impressive live archive online!

Utrecht and Amsterdam 1984 live pictures

thetoptourThe Cure played four times in the Netherlands during The Top Tour in 1984. Three shows in May: on 30 May 1984 at an ‘Eindexamen’ Festival (celebrating high school graduation), held at the Maaspoort in Den Bosch and two concerts the next day at the Muziekcentrum Vredenburg in Utrecht. Here they played two shows on one day, at 4:30 pm and at 10 pm. At the end of August (30th) The Cure returned to Holland for a one-off date at the Jaap Edenhal in Amsterdam.

Recently some very cool (and to me unknown) pictures from The Top Tour in Holland were published online. They are from Utrecht and Amsterdam.

Update January 2015: if you scroll down you can also find some photos from The Cure’s show at the Ahoy’ Sportpaleis in Rotterdam on 27 November 1985.

Thanks to the person(s) who took/posted these photos!

Utrecht 1982

Robertoutside82The European leg of the Pornography Tour started in Rotterdam on 5 May 1982. From 5 to 10 May The Cure played six dates in six cities in the Netherlands, before proceeding to Belgium, Germany and France. For a change, most of the Dutch shows were booked at rather large classical music venues, like De Doelen in Rotterdam and De Vereeniging in Nijmegen. The last concert in Holland, on 10 May 1982, was at a classical concert hall as well, the Muziekcentrum Vredenburg in Utrecht.

For many Cure fans, Pornography is their favourite album. But the tour promoting that album wasn’t that successful at all.

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