The Cure’s Show, Updated and Enhanced by Artificial Intelligence

A YouTuber has uploaded an AI-enhanced version of The Cure’s “Show” concert film, and it’s an absolute treat.

I’ve written before about how The Cure of the early ’90s circa Wish is “my” Cure; that’s when I first discovered the band, and ever since, that era of The Cure has occupied a special place in my heart. As such, I’ve always regretted not seeing Robert Smith et al. back then.

Until now, the closest I’ve been able to come is listening to Show and Paris, a pair of live albums that the band released in the fall of 1993, and watching the odd YouTube video. But earlier this year, a YouTube user named “InterlacedGeek” uploaded a version of the Show concert film that was enhanced with the aid of artificial intelligence. They write:

I used Artificial Intelligence powered software (and other professional tools and software) to enhanced this footage.

It is therefore presented here completely reworked visually in a form that didn’t exists before.

The technology itself creates a unique result. It is more an interpretation than an upscale. It’s only purpose is to demonstrate the power (and sometimes limitations) of artificial intelligence in video post production.

They also note that the video is intended for “comment/educational and demonstrative purposes only,” though I don’t know how well that jibes with copyrights, etc. (so maybe watch it sooner rather than later). I do know that, as a Cure fan who’s never seen the band live, InterlacedGeek’s video is an absolute treat, and it looks and sounds fantastic. (They used footage originally from laserdisc as the source material and then “uphanced” it to 4K.)

Robert Smith and his bandmates are at the top of their game here as they tear through the usual hits (“Pictures of You,” “Just Like Heaven,” “Fascination Street,” “A Forest”), play some older songs (“The Walk,” “Let’s Go to Bed,” “Primary”), and perform most of the Wish album, including stellar renditions of “Open,” “From the Edge of the Deep Green Sea,” “End,” and “To Wish Impossible Things.”

Here’s the full setlist:

  1. Tape/Open
  2. High
  3. Pictures of You
  4. Lullaby
  5. Just Like Heaven
  6. Fascination Street
  7. A Night Like This
  8. Trust
  9. Doing the Unstuck
  10. The Walk
  11. Let’s Go to Bed
  12. Friday I’m In Love
  13. Inbetween Days
  14. From the Edge of the Deep Green Sea
  15. Never Enough
  16. Cut
  17. End
  18. To Wish Impossible Things
  19. Primary
  20. Boy’s Don’t Cry
  21. Why Can’t I Be You?
  22. A Forest

Particularly delightful is the footage that plays before the actual concert, of fans and audience members hanging out at the venue. It’s a veritable slideshow of early ’90s goth and alternative fashion in all its glory, a glimpse back at a simpler and more awesome time (and yes, that’s the nostalgia talking).

I see lots of kids who look just like my friends and I did back then, and I wonder: whatever happened to them all? Are they still Cure fans? Are they still goths? How many of them still think about this concert from July of 1992? Have they ever watched Show and caught a glimpse of their younger selves, now immortalized in a Cure concert film?

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