Last week, the Cure played a few London shows to benefit the Teenage Cancer Trust, and those shows were vast in scope — too vast for at least one critic. Writing in The Guardian, Caroline writes that the 45 songs that the band played were simply too many and that “they’ve yet to work out how to build up a show.” And when a commenter took exception, she responded within the comments section, “I have it on good authority that the band have read the review and liked it.” This turned out to be not quite accurate, as Cure frontman Robert Smith pointed out via every rock star’s favorite medium, the all-caps screed.
“I have it on good authority that the band have read the review and liked it.” Caroline Sullivan… WHAAAT?!!
SHE WAS COMMENTING ON HER OWN GUARDIAN ‘REVIEW’ OF OUR EPIC 45 SONG 213 MINUTE FRIDAY RAH TEENAGE CANCER TRUST SHOW
TO BE CLEAR – AND ON THE BEST AUTHORITY – THE BAND HAVE INDEED READ THE REVIEW – BUT DID NOT LIKE IT!
THE REVIEW WAS – TO PUT IT POLITELY – LAZY NONSENSE… swampy… numbing… yet to work out how to build up a show… GULP!!!
BUT WE NOW KNOW WHERE WE HAVE BEEN GOING WRONG ALL THIS TIME: Condensed into 90 minutes, this would have been one of the gigs of the year
WE PLAY TOO MANY SONGS! DOH! BUT… IS IT NOT VERY OBVIOUS THAT WE PLAY OUR OWN SHOWS (AS OPPOSED TO FESTIVAL HEADLINES) FOR FANS OF THE BAND?
THAT IS WHY WE PLAY A MIX OF SONGS, AND WHY WE PLAY FOR AS LONG AS WE DO…
WHEN WE GO TO SEE AN ARTIST WE ARE FANS OF, WE DON’T WANT THE PERFORMANCE TO END… THAT’S WHAT BEING A FAN MEANS… ISN’T IT?
WE HAD TWO FANTASTIC NIGHTS, PLAYING TO GREAT CROWDS FOR A WONDERFUL CHARITY… THE GUARDIAN ‘REVIEW’ WAS SAD BITTER JUNK
PS. AS FOR THE TORYGRAPH HACK… sigh… ONWARDS
Sullivan later wrote another piece about the band’s set and her reaction to it, and she ended the piece with this kicker: “OK, Robert. Buy you a drink?” This did not exactly placate Smith, and he responded again:
LAZY NONSENSICAL CONTENT ASIDE; WE WERE DRIVEN TO REACT TO CAROLINE SULLIVAN’S ‘REVIEW’ BY THE BLATANT DISHONESTY OF HER ACCOMPANYING COMMENT
“I have it on good authority that the band have read the review and liked it.” IT WAS SIMPLY TOO MUCH TO IGNORE…
HAVING EXPOSED THE LIE, WE FIGURED WE WOULD AT THE VERY LEAST GET SOME KIND OF A HANDS IN THE AIR “IT’S A FAIR COP GUV” FROM HER FOR ATTEMPTING SUCH A BANAL SELF SERVING DECEPTION… WE THOUGHT THERE MIGHT EVEN BE A FAINT CHANCE THAT SHE WOULD BE MOVED TO APOLOGISE TO HER READERS FOR MAKING STUFF UP!
BUT AS COMMENT BY COMMENT SHE DIGS HER EVASIVE HOLE A LITTLE DEEPER, IT WOULD SEEM WE HOPED FOR TOO MUCH…
A SHAME. WE ALWAYS THOUGHT THE GUARDIAN AND ITS JOURNALISTS VALUED TRUTH?
“OK, Robert. Buy you a drink?”… gulp!!!
HONESTLY? ummm… WE WOULD PREFER YOU JUST REVIEWED WITH A TAD MORE UNDERSTANDING AND HONESTY AND CONSIDERING LINES LIKE “Not as scary […] as Robert Smith in full fig” MAYBE THREW A FEW LESS STONES? OR MOVED OUT OF YOUR GLASS HOUSE?!!
“Rock is about grabbing people’s attention.” REALLY? THAT’S WHAT WE ARE SUPPOSED TO ‘BE ABOUT’? YOU THINK THAT’S IT? IT WOULD EXPLAIN A LOT
WE WILL NOW DRAW A LINE UNDER THE ‘SAD BITTER JUNK REVIEW’ EPISODE, AND SLIP BACK OUT INTO THE WORLD WITH A SHAKE OF THE HEAD AND A SMILE…
PREFERRING THE OLD GOTH DISNEY DICTUM TO ROCKER SIMMONS’;
“WE ARE NOT TRYING TO ENTERTAIN THE CRITICS; WE’LL TAKE OUR CHANCES WITH THE PUBLIC”
It’s generally not a great idea for stars to respond to their critics, but Smith is right about at least one thing: Actual fans are never going to be bummed out that a favorite band is playing for too long.