If a music festival headlined and curated by the Cure sounds Just Like Heaven to you, then get thee to the Rose Bowl on August 31. That’s the day Robert Smith and Co. will present their take on a music festival. The lineup includes icons like Pixies, indies like Joy Formidable, along with groups like Throwing Muses, Emma Ruth Rundle, Deftones, and Chelsea Wolfe. Rundle is a Kentucky singer-songwriter and visual artist who creates dense, ambient soundscapes. Wolfe fuses doom metal, folk and gothic rock.
Throwing Muses is a contemporary of the Cure, having been founded in 1981 and touring extensively through the mid-1990’s. Despite recording some of the most classic alternative albums of the 80’s, the group eventually stopped due to lack of money. However, with help from fans and musicians like Smith, Throwing Muses has found new life. Metal band Deftones have a new album out, while Pixies continue to record and tour.
Fun fact – the Pixies opened for the Cure when they played Dodger Stadium in Socal back in 1989.
Smith also pushes the envelope by including Kaelan Mikla, goth-folk-punkers from Iceland. Mogwai, a Scottish post-punk band, and The Twilight Sad (also a Scottish post-punk band!) round out the killer lineup.
This is the band’s second foray into curated music festivals. In 2019, Smith picked the lineup for the Meltdown Festival in London’s BST Hyde Park. The 25-year old festival is an artist-curated music and art event. The Cure are fresh off their induction into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. Smith called Meltdown Fest “a fabulous experience. The whole day was really magical, and we wanted to create something with a similar celebratory vibe for this summer.” The band’s 2018 Hyde Park performance will be released in documentary format later this year. Director Tim Pope documented the band’s 40th anniversary year.
2019 continues to be a big year for the Cure, which is working on its first album in 10 years. Described as “dark” and “incredibly intense”, the new album is inspired by the Cure’s classic Disintegration, which turns 30 this year. Smith told Rolling Stone “I’ve waited ten years to do something that means something.” Although they have recorded nearly two dozen songs that are extra-long, the group has yet to decide how long the album should be. Smith predicts the album will “delight our hardcore fans. And probably really, really infuriate everyone else. At my age, I’m still doom and gloom.”
The Cure will play Austin City Limits later this year.
The Pasadena Daydream Fest is open to all ages and in a nod to the ages of many old school Cure fans, parents get one free ticket for kids under 10 with each ticket purchase. The event takes place at the Rose Bowl in sunny Pasadena, California. The city of Pasadena is notoriously picky about allowing many events at or near the Rose Bowl, so it’s a big honor that this event even made the cut. Tickets are at $150 (excluding fees). There are still VIP passes available, starting at $300, which presumably provide more access as well as some shady seating.