The Goth interview with Mister Smith
Wirtten by Iker Seisdedos
One: Cover) We went to clubs for sinisters asking for questions.
We took them with us to London. And
Robert Smith, starter of the movement and leader of The Cure, followed it. His band breaks a silence of 4 years
The godfather of Goths. Rice powder. Coke with
Gin on a tomb. Palm hair style. Our visit in the clubs for
sinisters in Madrid confirmed our suspects. The Cure is much more than a pop band. It is cult. Robert Smith,
with an orange juice, answered in London to his Hispanic fans. Interview in black.
“Is it you the one who has been cheering on
in Madrid?” London. Nth promotion interview. Checked up. Robert
Smith follows at close his career. He has heard that our immersion in the Spanish sinister scene to lead an
experiment; an interview made by fans for the godfather of Goths. Visiting webs, forums, discography labels, and
clubs in Madrid, all in a weekend, with just a question: what would you ask Robert Smith if you would have the
chance to? Results: 180 questions. The leader of The Cure laughs at the figure. Eye liner, his classic palm hair
style, wide shirt and wide trousers. Black. The older he gets, the more he looks like Bette Davis in “Whatever
happened to Baby Jane?”.
Locked in the suite 1749 of the hotel Gatwick
Hilton, Robert Smith drinks orange juice and receives with soft
manners, and looks of intelligence to talk about the new album by the British band, which publish, after 4 years
and warnings of rupture, The Cure. A title for beginners by a band who has sold 29 millions of albums in 25 years.
A critical album, which reminds to the first years of the band. Light filters through a window in a vaguely Zen
The scenery is very different from the one
which offered the Heaven 72 hours before, an after Goth which is
1500 kms far from there. Black walls, dark angles, and an stroboscopic light which blinks again and again 10000
times per minute. In the track, among short points, leather, or velvet bracelets, black crucifixes, backcombings,
lots of make up and rice powder, a block shouts over the sound of a sinister music “only tell him that this fan gets
mute when listening to his music”. Too much messages. “Couldn’t you give him this on the side of me?” asks for
it anyone. Many people beg “And what about if you get me in your suitcase?”. All of them ask with surprising
clarity after having being struck suddenly in the middle of the night in a place that looks like a dungeon. The
descent towards the dark had begun in La Phobia, maybe the only bar in Chueca in which one can drink gin with
coke sitting on a tomb. A couple of hours later, on the showing of the Dark Hole, the invited DJ, Catalina Isis, 22
years old, from Valencia, begins.
Question: After so many years and so many members,
do you think that The Cure is only you?
Answer: The new album has been recorded live, don't you think that is a sign of the harmony in the band? We
have been the same members for 10 years. I really think that the general principle of that The Cure is a mutant
band is a fallacy. People keep on talking about the drummer as the new member of The Cure. It is like saying that
Ronnie Wood is the new member of the Rolling Stones! It is true that if I were not in The Cure, the band would
not exist, but The Cure is a band.
Q: Do you sometimes feel tired of being Robert
Smith, of being that image of someone sad, homesick, and
strange? Elise Terán, 21, Santander.
A: No, now I do not feel that responsibility that I felt before, the weight of my role. I think that now I do not feel
so uneasy with what I do. When I write the songs I am usually on my own. And concerning to my image, I just try
to keep it pure, far from cinism. But it is hard. it is like a fight. It can look like that, but I have to confront the real
world. You cannot show your homesick side when confronting a lawyer. And I have to deal with v very grotesque
people from the world of music. Before I was worried about separating myself: there was a Robert which
performed, another Robert for business and a private one. Now I am more interested in becoming an only person
which develops in different situations.
Q: The brand new single from the new album
is called “The End of the World”; if the end of the world would
strike you while performing, which song would you play? Victoria Elizeche, 29, Argentina
A: Depending on who would end the world and why; If it were God, I would play “Faith”, and if it were caused by
human beings, 100 years.
Q: What kind of shellac do you use? Alberto
Ramírez, 26, Madrid.
A: Good question [he stays thinking] I am not trying to look interesting, is that I do not remember which is the
brand of the shellac. It could be L’Oreal, I should know it because I always use it. My wife Mary is the one who
buys it since 20 years ago… I never look at its attach.
Q: Which one do you think as the main reason
for the longevity of The Cure? Roger Bonastre, 26, Barcelona.
A: Two main reasons: we are proud of what we do. If it were not that way, we would not record albums. This is the
first time in my life that I do not feel made to release an album. We are not looking for success in commercial
(Picture 2: Robert Smith: Ready!)
The second reason is that we keep on thinking
that music is interesting. On the other hand, because I feel I can
connect with certain people such as I did with Nick Drake or Bowie. Even now, when I listen to Five Leaves Left
[by Nick Drake] I keep on feeling the same as I used to when I was 14.
Q: Do you see yourself performing at 60?
A: No, and if you see me doing it, please shoot me.
Elise is 22, aspirant to become an actress;
she calls herself that way with the motif of the song A Letter to Elise.
“The sinisters are people who dress and act like that because they feel such a deep gloominess due to the
constant loosing that living means”. This meditation brings about in Madrid, 3 days before the interview took
place, in front of the fashion parade at the exit of the Dark Hole. Matrix style, impossible hairdos, and some
“Roberto” loose. Others, such as Miguel Jiménez, literature teacher, 29, seems to have come out from the house
of Usher. He wears a beret, eyes in make up, and a shirt with laces in the sleeves. “Do you think I can go and
teach in the institute dressed like this?”. Among girls, black widows, white tulles. In the pub, Laura Roset, 24,
combs her long hair.
Q: What do you think of the new sinister bands
such as HIM or Evanescence?
A: I like HIM and Scarling among the new goths. I´ve listened to the single by Evanescence and I don’t like it
indeed. The best I’ve been listening to lately is AFI. I love them.
Q: What do you think of the recover of the
first Cure singles by bands such as The Rapture?
Artiza Basterretea, 30, Bilbao
A: I think that bands who have The Cure as their main influence have coincided. But this was just the same a few
years ago. Think of Korn, they wore Cure t-shits at the promotion of their first album. I see we are present as
inspiration for new bands. They watch us and think it is possible to be successful in other ways. I am proud of
liking bands such as Interpol, which I think they are fabulous. We will play with them in Summer. I am worried at
if we will be able to follow them.
Q: Did you compose Pornography drugged with
tripi (note from the translator: Tripi is a kind of LSD)
Pablo Ramírez, 25, Madrid
A: [Laughs] I wrote the lyrics full of LSD; the other day I was listening to the demos, and it was easily noticeable
that I was drugged when singing. It was very funny listening to me in that state of extreme consciousness .I
composed Pornography locked in a room at my parent’s house, the whole day drugged and alone, with only the
writing machine. I didn’t go out of there not even for urinating (that I did out of the window, BTW).
Four days before the interview, the phone rings
in the Madrilène office Stereoskop, discography label expert is
dark, techno, and industrial music. ‘I know about a few people who would have to ask Robert smith many things.
Just give me a couple of days”. Promises Susana Egeo,35, teacher, leader of Stereoskop. The response is
overwhelming: dark writers, composers, discography executives… two well-known Cure fans, Ramoncin, and the
speaker Julio Ruiz, also join the interview. ’Haha, celebrities’ Susana laughs. Let’s see.
Q: Till when are you going to play with the
sentence “this is going to be the last Cure album”?
Julio Ruiz, 50, director of Música Grande, Radio 3.
A: [Laughs] This is not the last album. When 4 years ago we published Bloodflowers, I was convinced of that The
Cure had reached its end. It was an epitaph. The person who convinced me was Ross Robinson [Californian
producer of the album, famous for his work for bands such as Korn]. There was a time in which he insisted on
that I should make another album, because a whole generation was waiting for Th from us. after much insisting,
he convinced me. If I wouldn’t do it, then I was going to regret it. He is already thinking about the next one. If you
don’t like this album, then you don’t like The Cure. It represents the point we have reached in 25 years.
3: From left to right: Perry Bamonte, Jason Cooper, Roger O´Donnell,
Simon Gallup, Robert Smith. The
Q: What is going to happen when the education
and respect of music disappear?
Ramoncín, minister and member of the Cconsejo de la Admnisnistración de la SGEA
A: I don’t understand the question… if you are referring to the pirates, I thinks the companies are the ones to
take the blame, which are relating very bad things to music. I am thinking, for example, about the pressure that
has been made these days to get the people to pay 25 cents more for each download. They don’t realise of how
stupid is wasting money in prosecuting the people. If the pirates don’t respects someone or something, I think it
is to the way this business works.
The Cure will be released the 28th of
The Cure will perform the 16th of July on the Monte do Gozo Festival, A Coruña. (Note from the Ttranslator: The name of the festival is Xacobeo 2004/ Conciertos del Nuevo Milenio)
Quotes among the text:
“I cannot remember the trade mark of the shellac
I use; My wife Mary is the one who buys it, since 20 years ago”
“I do not see myself performing at 60. If you see me doing it, please shoot me”
(Thanks to Sharon of Charlotte
Sometimes for translating and typing it all up!)