Video, Vintage Video — October 24, 2013 at 9:39 am

Vintage Video: Watch The Cure’s out-of-print 1984 concert film ‘Live in Japan’

The Cure's Robert Smith

With The Cure rumored to be preparing Trilogy/Reflections-like concerts featuring performances of The Top alongside The Head on the Door and Kiss Me, Kiss Me, Kiss Me, we devote this week’s Vintage Video to a long-lost relic of the Top era: the band’s 90-minute “Live in Japan” concert film, which documents its Oct. 17, 1984, at a performance in Tokyo and was released the following year on VHS and Betamax in Japan only.

Like the better-known “The Cure in Orange,” the “Live in Japan” film has never been released on DVD, nor was it widely available in the U.S. It captures the short-lived lineup that found frontman Robert Smith backed by drummer Andy Anderson, guitarist Porl Thompson, keyboardist Lol Tolhurst and bassist Phil Thornalley.

Watch the full film below via basetapes:



Setlist: The Cure, “Live in Japan”

1. “Shake Dog Shake”
2. “Play For Today”
3. “Primary”
4. “Wailing Wall”
5. “The Empty World”
6. “The Hanging Garden”
7. “The Walk”
8. “One Hundred Years”
9. “Give Me It”
10. “A Forest”
11. “The Top”
12. “Charlotte Sometimes”
13. “Let’s Go To Bed”
14. “The Caterpillar”
15. “Boys Don’t Cry”
16. “10.15 Saturday Night”
17. “Killing An Arab”
18. “The Lovecats”






  1. This is great! I actually rented this from a local record store in Virginia Beach back in ’86 and copied it onto Beta. Could have planned that better… Still have my ‘Live in Orange’ VHS, tho.

  2. This might be my favorite live video by The Cure, just edging out In Orange and Play Out. The Top is such a great album and this era was very unique for the band.

  3. I used to rent this over and over from Cut Corner Records in Lexington, KY. It’s hands-down my favorite version of The Walk.

  4. Batshiz Crazay

    Sooo dark… but always good to see old material being released, especially since it’s from the rare 1984 period. In Orange is still the better release, IMO. :)

  5. Interestingly enough, over the past 5 years since 2008, only 2 out of 18 have not been played live;
    ‘The Wailing Wall’, and ‘The Empty World’.

    Everything else has been played at some point over the past few concerts and tours.

  6. I’ve never seen this before, so thanks for posting!

    That’s a cool arrangement/mix of ‘The Walk,’ emphasizing Robert’s little arpeggiated guitar parts over the shrieking keyboard that usually dominates. Interesting.

  7. Andrey Medina

    I was lucky enough to see them live in El Paso, Texas in 2013. They did many songs from The Top. Was it a taste of things to come? I sure hope so because they were amazing performances. They did Birdmad Girl, they did 3 encores. The first encore was totally dedicated to The Top. They played Shake Dog Shake, Bananafishbones, The Caterpillar, and Give Me It. I sure hope they do a third trilogy performance!

  8. Video removed… :-( and I used to hang out at Cut Corner in Lexington way back in the day…small world!!

  9. There are a couple of DVD transfer floating around on iOffer…

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