Thirty(!) years ago today I was beside myself with excitement for a very special The Cure gig. Ahead of the full Wish Tour, the band announced a clutch of warm-up dates at club venues.
All the shows I had seen up to that point had either been in enormous arenas, or outdoor shows. The Kilburn National Ballroom was a relatively tiny venue for The Cure, and that only added to the feeling of anticipation. Seeing your #CultHeroes live is honour enough, but up close and personal? Even better.
The journey to seeing this gig was fraught. I was studying for a Journalism degree at the time and had an in-class assessment the day that tickets went on sale (at only £10 each!). In these pre-internet days phoning up to book tickets, or queuing in person, were the only options. The only person I knew who would want to go wasn’t able to queue up either, so I had to knuckle down and complete my class assessment while the clock ticked down and – you guessed it – the gig sold out.
First world problems, I know! (Hey, I was still very young back then.) And it turns out I passed the in-class assessment so there is that. I was trying to be responsible, even in the face of my borderline insane Cure obsession! And, luckily I was working a part-time job to support myself so I rolled up my baggy black sleeves, put in several extra hours and saved up some cash.
Long story short, the £10 ticket ended up costing me £60 on the night, but I had enough cash left over for a tour shirt and a couple of beers. People danced and sang along. There were promotional balloons! Happy the man, as the old b-side goes.
The gig itself was a loud, joyous, sweaty sprint through the amazing new double album Wish plus several hits and surprises. The crane camera swinging and floating above the crowd added a showbiz touch to proceedings, and from what I recall there was a fair bit of crowd-surfing going on during the faster numbers. (Hey, this was ’92, the golden age of grunge…)
I emerged from the tiny, packed out venue with a massive grin on my face. I would see The Cure a further nine times on the ’92 Wish tour, in those huge arenas again. But, as an intimate introduction to a massive tour, the 3rd May 1992 would be very hard to beat.
See what The Cure played on 3rd May 1992 here.
Comment below with your Cure memories! I’d love to hear them!