Cure's 'dark-good mood' appears on MPB's territory
band's frontsman, talks to Manchete about the tour.
Robert Smith is one of the most important names of the worldwide rock.
Responsible for the vocals, the guitar, the lyrics and the leadership of the
british band The Cure, Robert arrived in Brazil with his band to perform shows
in Porto Alegre, Belo Horizonte, Rio and Sao Paulo. And in Belo
Horizonte,Smith gave an exclusive interview to Ana Gaio, from Manchete.
- After all that confusion in Argentina, where lots of people got injured
and you were wounded by objects thrown on stage, how have you seen [felt
about] the gigs here in Brazil so far?
Here the mood has been much more better, more fun. A party like a soccer
game, the best gigs we've done in the last ten years.
you get surprised with the fact that the audience knew to sing your songs,
even those from albums not yet released in Brazil?
I was really surprised. I didn't perform any gigs during six months and I had
forgotten the lyrics for some songs. The people [maybe Robert is talking about
the other band members, that's not clear on the text] said that I should have
taken a look on them to remember, but I thought it wasn't important to do so
because here people don't speak English and I could sing anything and no one
would understand. But, during the show, everyone sang along.
your decision to come to Brazil during the band's career peak?
We wanted to come before but we decided to wait until our albums sold more.
During two years, you were the guitarist for Siouxsie and The Banshees. The
fact that she came here last year (late 1986) influenced your decision to come
I haven't spoken to Siouxsie, I don't get along with her very well. But Steve
Severin, Banshees' bassist, is still my friend. I talked to him and his
opinion was decisive.
your passion for soccer?
That's a very old thing. I'm a fan, so that, when we made the contract to
come play here I asked for free Sundays to go to a soccer match.
Last year, here in Brazil, Cure became a mania,being an influence upon the
dark vogue. In Europe, the same happened. Do you get bothered by seeing
thousands of people imitating you when you go out on the street?
I don't wear black unless I'm on stage. But I think that people don't copy me
and I change a lot. As a matter of fact, last year, we were obliged to
participate in a French TV program. I hate to do things against my will and we
decided, to show our discontent, to do absurd things. We appeared there with
printed dresses and painted faces and we had absolutely rude attitudes all the
Between us here in Brazil, there was a rumor that those printed dresses and
everything was The Cure's new image and many people thought you would appear
dressed like that here.
If they let us, Porl (Thompson, guitar and keyboards) would!
How's the personality of the more famous rockstar of present time?
That's really hard to tell, because I have several personalities. On stage, I
am a person, during this interview, I am another person and when I'm talking
to Simon, I'm someone else. If I acted always in a same way, I would be a
perfect idiot. Inside the band, maybe I'm the more serious one.
it true that you sleep 16 hours per day?
It was a wish. I pick one or two days per year to sleep all day. That's so
good! I feel like a sick boy that skips class and stays all day in bed. But,
by the time I said that [I sleep 16 hours per day], I wasn't able to sleep
more than four hours per night.
During an interview to the French magazine Rock & Folk you declared that love
can't be taken seriously. However, your relationship with Mary already lasts
14 years. How do you explain this?
My relationship with Mary is not serious. We understand each other pretty
well, we have the same tastes and she makes me laugh a lot. Therefore,
everything fit quite well. We grew up together, she knew me before all this
success and the only thing she doesn't like is all this attention drawn
towards me. For this reason, she does not travel with me on tour. We carry on
with a life separated from all of this [sucess].
is always said that you used drugs to make the LP The Top. How's your relation
with drugs now days?
I don't get drugged anymore. By the time I did Pornography, Faith
and even The Top (from 1981 until 1984), I didn't know who I was, not
even where I was because of drugs. It was an experience and as one, I think it
was worthwhile. But I stopped with this habit or else I wouldn't be here
What caused Robert Smith to become a musician? If it was the will to not have
to work, then things didn't really work.
To not have to work was one of the reasons. I lived a good time using the
unemployment benefit given by the british government. I spent all my time
doing music. To me, make music, go on tour, record albums are not jobs. Of
course there is the most tedious part of it all: give interviews and all
Could you explain what was that problem with the song Killing An Arab in the
In the USA, Killing An Arab was the main track on the LP Standing
On The Beach, the one that got played on the radios. Some thought that it
was a racist song. I explained that the lyrics were inspired by The
Stranger, written by Albert Camus. Anyhow, I ordered to gather all discs
[take them out of the market] and put on them a stamp explaining everything
and the situation calmed down...After this tour, we're going to do a benefit
concert in the US to help Palestinian, Israeli, American children to prove
that, to us, they're all the same.
Cure is a band that already has eleven years being 'on the road' and always
knew how to renew itself. To you, what is the rock's future?
Rock's future is us! (laughs)
Intimately, Robert Smith dresses himself in a very
light way. On
stage, he keeps faithful to his dark image acquired during his time with the
Banshees: black clothes and hair largely spiked in all directions.
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