Being a fan of The Cure can involve a lot of heartbreak, and not just in terms of the band’s often-downbeat material. Robert Smith’s not exactly a man of his word when discussing future plans (“How many times does he have to tell you never to believe a word he says?” keyboardist Roger O’Donnell once tweeted). And that’s great when it comes to pronouncements that each tour will be The Cure’s last, but not so much when Smith’s discussing upcoming releases.
Given that track record, we decided to go back and re-examine all of The Cure releases that Smith has announced or hinted at since Slicing Up Eyeballs’ launch in 2009. In that time, the band has not released a whole lot officially. No new albums, no singles, no live DVDs. Just some vinyl reissues, an expanded 3CD re-release of Disintegration and the Bestival Live 2011 double album.
But the list of Cure releases Smith has promised would come out in 2010 and beyond is much longer, and includes a new studio album, a new remix collection, DVD reissues of old concert films, a new series of live DVD releases and a box set of material recorded for the BBC.
Below, we take an item-by-item look back at what might have been in the years since 2010 — and at which many devoted Cure fans would still love to throw their money.
‘The Cure in Orange’ DVD
Filmed in France in August 1986 during the tour in support of Standing on a Beach and released in 1988, this 95-minute concert film — long beloved by fans — has only ever been available on long-dead formats like VHS and laserdisc (and, yes, you can find it on bootleg DVD and occasionally online). Smith, in a since-deleted post to the Cure’s official site in October 2009 announcing plans to reissue Disintegration, promised “a lot more remastered Cure stuff in 2010,” including, at long last, “In Orange” on DVD.
Like “In Orange,” the Cure’s 1993 concert film “Show” — recorded in Detroit in the summer of 1992 during the Wish tour — only has been released officially on VHS and laserdisc, although its companion live album, also named Show, and that album’s companion, Paris, have seen subsequent digital release. Smith promised a DVD release of “Show” in 2010 in that same Disintegration announcement.
Mixed Up 2 compilation album
Also on that list of releases promised for 2010: Mixed Up 2, a sequel to The Cure’s 1990 remix album. The year 2010 came and went without a release of Mixed Up 2, or “The Cure in Orange” or “Show” on DVD, for that matter. But unlike those other releases, Smith would speak again of Mixed Up 2. In a video interview in July 2012, he said Mixed Up 2 was “coming out, probably this side of Christmas.” He explained the album “will be our favorite bands remixing Cure songs,” and said Mogwai would be giving “Faith” a makeover. Mogwai confirmed their involvement, but that remix has yet to see the light of day.
The Cure at the BBC box set
The most intriguing item on Smith’s list of promised 2010 releases, because so little is known about it, was the box set of The Cure’s recordings for the BBC. Both Siouxsie and the Banshees and The Mission have released multi-disc sets collecting years worth of recordings made for and broadcast by the BBC, and it’s easy to imagine The Cure doing something similar. But no further details of that project ever surfaced.
Wish deluxe reissue
The Cure’s CD reissue campaign on Rhino Records began in the mid-2000s with the band’s albums being re-released in two-disc sets in groups of three at a time, culminating with the standalone release of a three-disc expansion of 1989’s Disintegration. Since then, nothing. But in late 2011, word did slip out that a reissue of 1992’s Wish, the next album in sequence, was in the works. The Cure was reissuing “Friday I’m in Love” on 7-inch for charity, and the site announcing a contest to design the 45’s artwork revealed that Wish was “scheduled for the ‘deluxe re-release’ treatment in 2012.” Yet neither Rhino nor the band formally announced it, and none of the band’s post-’80s albums have seen deluxe CD re-releases.
Live DVD series
In February 2014, The Cure issued a press release announcing the band had sold out a pair of charity concerts at the Royal Albert Hall, and laying out plans for the rest of that year. Among several tantalizing revelations was news that The Cure would be launching a series of live concert DVD releases. No further information was offered, and, to date, that series has not come to fruition. (The release also announced plans for “Trilogy”-style concerts in late 2014 that would feature full performances of The Top, The Head on the Door and Kiss Me, Kiss Me, Kiss Me. Those shows never happened, either.)
4:14 Scream studio album
And, finally, the 2014 press release also announced plans to release, “in the next few months,” The Cure’s 14th studio album, a collection recorded at the same time as 2008’s 4:13 Dream and tentatively titled 4:14 Scream. Smith previously had characterized that material as much darker than what was released on 4:13 Dream. Just over a month later, though, Smith already was backtracking on those plans, saying in a radio interview that he was not terribly keen on putting out an album “made by a band that no longer exists.” He added that he was “trying to be convinced that I should release what is the second half of an album that effectively came out in 2008.” Apparently, he still hasn’t been convinced.
Did we miss any? If you know of other Cure releases that were supposed to come out this decade, but haven’t (and can link to some documentation), please let us know in the comments below.
PREVIOUSLY ON SLICING UP EYEBALLS
- The Cure’s Lol Tolhurst and Pearl Thompson reunite in the recording studio
- The Cure play ‘The Top’ in full, debut ‘A Man Inside My Mouth’ at epic 40-song London gig
- The Cure to perform ‘small clutch of happy hits’ at pair of London benefit shows this week
- Watch: The Cure covers The Beatles’ ‘Hello Goodbye’ for Paul McCartney tribute
A glaring omission in your list is the Reflections DVD release. The thought of that still makes me itchy! I saw the show in the Royal Albert Hall and it just blew me away.
Yes, also the Reflections live, Robert’s solo album and the second (and third and fourth) part of the book ten imaginary years.
The Tim Pope directed dvd for the 2013 Latin American shows is another filmed but unreleased!
Tim Pope filmed the Latam tour in 2013 for DvD release , the 2 unreleased songs from the 2016 tour, ..
Tim Pope traveled with The Cure during their south american tour. They were all filmed to also do a release.
It’s even on Tim’s wiki! ROFL
RS is not a pathological liar; he’s just very trigger-shy when it comes to these decisions, and very disorganized when it comes to an overall ‘game plan’ for The Cure moving forward.
Yes, great they toured in 2016. But the ‘new’ songs were just leftovers from 4:14, and ‘Step Into the Light’ is an awful song.
At this point, after almost 9 years with no new material; The Cure is basically a nostalgia act. Their setlists are comprised mainly of material 1992 and earlier, and while it’s great they play 30 – 35 songs and rare stuff not putting out new material is getting a little ridiculous.
RS needs a game plan; set dates, set a release schedule, etc.. Look the perfect time to have put out some of these releases and a new album was during this tour when the world was paying attention. But that time is past, its been 6 months since the US tour ended, 2 months since Europe. I mean he should have at least released “It Can Never be the Same” as a single with “Step Into the Light” as a bside…
How RS ‘manages’ The Cure is haphazard at best, and he’s missing a lot of opportunity to not only make money; but truly define the legacy of The Cure with all these releases.
Frustrating for fans, but in the end, at least we get regular shows. I mean, they played the U.S. in 2011, 2013, 2014, 2016…
Again, RS needs to sit down and decide what he wants The Cure to look like over the next decade; a nostalgia act that just tours, or a band focused on defining it’s legacy through new music, historical concert DVD/Blurays, and other items.
Dude, they made 65 million on their last tour–net sales. They are all rich. They can do whatever the fuck they want. And, if “It can never be the same” is really about his mother dying, perhaps they don’t want to sell the song. Perhaps they figured you could record it live and leave it at that. You sound like a wannabe band manager. What’s next? Are you going to say that you want Boris to come back because Jason is an awful drummer? What other cliche cure arguments can you throw in?
Thank you – you’re exactly Right. Robert doesn’t “need” to do anything including the 2016 World Tour.
Jesus, some Cure fans are a bitchy, ungrateful lot.
I happily trade all of the above “promises” for experience of The Reflections show in NY and the 4 shows I got to go to on the 2016 World Tour.
RS is a perfectionist who pretty much does all of the re-issue stuff himself . . . would I take a less than perfect release of any of the above rather than nothing? Sure but it isn’t my work so I’m not able to make that call.
I have to agree/reiterate what Karen is saying. Some Cure fans are a really ungrateful lot. So much so, even Chain of Flowers discontinued their public comments. Personally, I am perfectly content with the Cure as a “nostalgia” act. If it means them having integrity and NOT releasing embarrassment after embarrassment of an album, the way Depeche Mode do?
Then RS has the right idea on how to handle the band’s future.
I agree Karen/Steven as well. I especially agree with Stevens point on The Cure becoming like Depeche Mode. In my opinion, their albums have been crap since SOFAD. I would never want The Cure to follow their example. Keep playing as the wonderful “nostalgia act” that you are and I for one will be perfectly content.
I’d love it if Boris came back and Jason decided to step aside. The group made much better records with Boris as their drummer, and sounded better live as well, not needing a click track. He’s a feel player that fits The Cure’s sound. Can you think of anything Jason has drummed on that is as great a collaboration with Robert’s songwriting as “Burn”? That was recorded between the two of them. Jason isn’t a bad drummer, but his general approach is distracting for a band that relies on atmosphere. And he most certainly lacks the creativity Boris brought to studio recordings.
It’s been hilarious to be a Cure fan over the last 9 years. I learned longed ago thankfully to just assume that nothing Smith says means a damn thing. :)
Thanks for the article. I’ve been listening to the Lost Wishes EP – I ripped the audio from youtube fan videos. Would love to get those – and a much, much needed WISH remaster job – this year being the 25th anniversary.
AND… we were teased with the 2 new songs this past tour – It Can Never Be The Same, and Step Into The Light. I was hoping it would lead to the release of 4:14.
And… something peculiar. I get hi-res audio files from 7digital website. For a VERY short time they had a digital release of THE CURE LIVE @ READING 2012. I bought one track (Want live). Shortly after it was taken down.
There have been a couple of cure DVDs released in the last few (6?) years by the BBC. I bought the Glasgow 1984 concert and that Reading 2012 gig you mentioned. As far as I know they are not “official” band releases but still released by the BBC.
The LatAm tour in 2013 which was filmed by Tim Pope it seems that will never see the light.
Matt there seems to be a typo.. you say Show was released on DVD and laserdisc but i guess you meant VHS and laserdisc? You immediately after say it was never released on DVD.
You are correct. Thanks for letting me know.
I have been waiting and waiting for the Wish reissue. The 1991 versions of The Big Hand and Wendy Time are so much better than the final versions. I would kill for a reissue with all of the 1991 versions and a high quality Town and Country recording from the January 1991 London show. Also, add Lost Wishes and the instrumental demos. It might be four CDs, but it would be worth it.
Robert is a natural born liar! It’s fun most of the time. But come on and give the diehards what they want! In Orange (still have my vhs and the bootleg dvd). The Reflections shows. The Wish Deluxe (they can stop after that one). BBC sessions although I think I have them all.
The demos for Wish were so much better than what we got on the album. Wendy Time was lovely before the album. And the Big Hand should have been there. Kill FIIL and DTUS and add A foolish arrangement. Would have been a brilliant album.
8, 10CDs selection from Bloodflowers tour (and later 1CD compilation)
9, Alex Harvey tribute… but the tribute album hasn’t released
10, A ‘Complete Cure’ box
11, 3 album deluxe re-issues in every 4th month
12, Robert Smith solo album will be given by the next Cure album (as free)
13, More rarities of Kiss me Kiss Me album
14, Remix or cover version of The XX’s song entitled ‘Heart skipped a beat’
15, Maybe a new collaboration between Steven Severin and him
??? Did I forgive anything ???
It has not been promised, but I’ve been patiently awaiting a DVD release of “Staring at the Sea – The Images”. Last year was its 30th anniversary. :)
In regard to André’s comments, I don’t recall anything about a release of ten ‘Dream Tour’ shows, but I do remember an announcement about two 2cd compilations, one for the North American shows and another for the European shows.
Regarding the ‘Reflections’ dvd, Chain of Flowers posted some nonsense excuse that Robert gave for not releasing it.
As for ‘4:14 Scream’, what you didn’t mention is that Robert discussed it in 2014. Here’s a snippet of what he said:
“AND MY PLAN THIS SUNNY SPRING MONDAY AT THE END OF MARCH IS TO GET TO THE POINT IN THE NEXT MONTH OR THREE WHERE WE CAN RELEASE:
1)A LTD EDITION ‘4:26 DREAM’ DOUBLE CD ALBUM OF 26 SONGS (ALL REMIXED) – IE. ‘THE ORIGINAL 4:13 DREAM SESSIONS CONCEPT ALBUM’ (INCLUDING THE ‘INSTRUMENTALS WITH WORDS’) – OF WHICH 10 TRACKS OR MORE WILL BE PREVIOUSLY UNRELEASED…
2) A LTD EDITION ‘4:14 SCREAM’ SINGLE CD ALBUM OF 14 PREVIOUSLY UNRELEASED SONGS – ALBEIT SOME OF THEM MAY ALSO BE ON ‘4:26 DREAM’… BUT THESE ‘4:14 SCREAM’ VERSIONS WILL ALL HAVE WORDS AND VOCALS…”
Never mind the part about not mentioning Robert mentioning it in 2014. I somehow missed it on the first couple of passes. However, you still left out some details.
The LatAm tour…
Congratulations on bringing the site back, long live this and your satellite radio show! Very frustrating list to say the least, and yes they’re a nostalgia act at this point but as a fan who was in the pit on a tour stop last year, they’re probably the strongest live nostalgia act going right now! Also saw an old film print of ‘In Orange’ at a theater last year, great to see on a big screen but best of luck to whoever works on a proper transfer of that (even though many of us will probably still buy it when it comes out)!
Smith will do what he wants as the inspiration moves him, that is how art should be, and that’s why I love his work and the way he thinks. As the one creating the music, he can change his mind as much as he wants, and as his spirit moves him.
You missed a few favoretes like Picture show, play out, and stearing at the Sea. If Smith realeed that on DVD I and I think many Cure Fans would purchase that without thinking twice.
Robert Smith should take a lesson from Mick and the Stones. Nobody really cares about your new music. They want to hear the classic tunes. End of story. Disintegration was the last album that really mattered, which in name is apropos. So go out and play the classic tunes. Personally, I would like to see them perform 17 Seconds in it’s entirety, take a break, and then perform Faith in its entirety. For an encore: 3 imaginary boys, and then close with Grinding Halt/Plastic Passion. Sublime!
I guess that you missed the ‘Reflections’ shows, eh?
Also, ‘Wish’ was an incredible album.
They played those albums in their entirety. It was called Reflections Tour. Where were you? “Disintegration was the last album that really mattered.” Whatever. Are you into the artist because they create art, or are you into the Cure because you have a musical taste dated towards a time in your life that made them special. I suspect the latter.
That already happened – and it was so good, it was otherwordly!
I don’t know. If you want to talk about ‘momentum’ the time was around 2004 when they came back with a decent record, actually played the new tunes, headlined their own festival, ‘Curiosa’ and every band from Interpol to Deftones was name checking them and making sure everybody knew what a big influence they were. Actually, the Join the Dots box set came around this time and did pretty well. But then again that faded away as RS was clearly not interested in making the Cure massive again, which is fine, but it’s been a painfully nine years wait for a band that was amazingly prolific at one point. I am not really sure if RS is just lazy and just wants to do other stuff in his golden years – let’s face it, he’s 58 in April, or maybe he’s not able to put out all these releases he’s hinted at over the years because of legal and licensing entanglements – does the Cure have a record deal anymore? Definitely, I am eagerly awaiting the In Orange/Show reissues, the Wish deluxe reissue and the Reflections shows in HD home video.”, but we’ll see.
While some are against digital-only releases RSX can get music out w/o a label. DIY bands have been releasing their own stuff for years per that world wide web thingy.
I am not particularly interested in the band after about 1994, even when the latter incarnations perform heyday material. It simply doesn’t compare. However, they must have so much in the vaults: demos, live material, BBC sessions, etc. If they went on a huge reissue campaign, there would be a lot of happy fans ready to buy everything.
As Andre mentioned above, there was a 3rd disc prepared of Kiss Me 3 outtakes that Robert mentioned as maybe offering as a digital only download. There were more songs from these sessions recorded, I’d much rather hear those than live versions of album tracks.
Maybe the Wish Deluxe will come out this year for the 25th anniversary? Pleeeeeeeeeeeeeease, Robert?
He seems a nice chap who likes to change his mind a lot or maybe he just likes to change his mind a lot
Dallas Texas 1989 – The Prayer Tour
This is the best concert I have ever seen. Robert released some tracks of this on The Deluxe Disintegration CD. The full concert was on the cure website for a short time but never released. It has a full deep sound that seems magical. It, to me is better than Encore.
Fans have only their selves to blame. Robert pretty much grew sick of hearing people bitch about TC2004 and 4:13 Dream, so he said “screw it!” and decided not to release the 4:13/4:14 version of the album. I was hoping the positive reaction to the two new songs played last tour would pursued him otherwise, but again, if we hadn’t made it possible for the band to tour without releasing a new album- in other words if we didn’t buy tickets! then he might have acted, but we have enabled this behavior.
I mean, as a Cure fan who blew through the copy of In Orange he lovingly bought on VHS in 1988, I think it’s time that classic show be given an update. And having been shot on film, it’s ripe for a BluRay as is Show. If it were mixed for DTS , I can just imagine finally having the solo for A Strange Day rotating around the speakers just like the lights rotate around Robert as he plays the solo… that’s always been a dream. Frankly, it’s actually a bit embarrassing that we’ve never seen DVDs at least of these shows, they are so long overdue it isn’t funny… bands were releasing DVDs in the late 90s!
What about that Paris – Show from, what was it, 2011 ? It has been shown in full in cinemas and in shortened versions on tv (at least in europe, ARTE). But it has been planned as a DVD-release if I remember it properly.
That is correct. but that show is from 2008. Amazing show, the band was really tight at that time and Porl really let out his talent. Too bad we´ll never see it.
I do remember he said at some point there would also be a complete singles compilation release (I don’t think I’m making this up) – and yes, the 3rd CD of the KMKMKM remaster.
Reflections. We were promised a DVD of the Reflections concert series.
Mixed Up 2 (Torn Down) is on his way, scheduled for 2018 Record Store Day! ;)