*** (3 out of 6 stars); July 5 at Orange Stage, Roskilde Festival
Fans of alternative rock band The Cure were treated to a taste of things to come from Roskilde Festival’s Orange Stage in the second show of the day at the revered venue. The Cure came on after local boys Kellermensch had opened the proceedings on Roskilde’s largest scene earlier in the evening and were performing at about the same time as the other big name of the day, American rapper Wiz Khalifa.
Despite being one of the most hyped names prior to the commencement of the festival, The Cure seemed off-pace and unenthusiastic, particularly at the start of their show.
Following what can only be described as an extremely laid-back approach, The Cure looked more like a band that should have closed the festival on Sunday, a far-cry short of living up to the legendary reputation they have gathered over the years.
Lead singer Robert Smith looked ragged, devoid of passion and well past his prime though his astonishing lack of energy was masked somewhat by his distinctive, far-reaching voice, which admittedly did get better and more poignant over the course of the performance. Several charged guitar and piano solos midway through the show also did their bit to punctuate what was otherwise a rather flat and insipid appearance by the overlords of Gothic rock, a genre that they helped cultivate.
Despite the shakiest of starts, things did get better as the sky dimmed and darkness fell on the Orange Stage as the audience livened up to more popular numbers from the band’s 30-year discography, such as the jolly ‘Friday I’m In Love’ and the reverberating ‘Lovesong.’
Smith added more weight to his vocals and interacted a lot more with an audience that had turned up in the thousands, armed to the teeth with flags, banners and smiles aplenty. Ultimately, the show will go down in this reviewer’s book as being at the best a lukewarm performance that will surely be eclipsed by many other shows at this year’s Roskilde Festival.
Tomorrow’s Orange Stage action features performances from American indie band The Gossip and popular Danish rappers Malk De Koijn amongst others. Clearly the best of Roskilde Festival 2012 is yet to come.