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Two nights with The Cure and The Twilight Sad 

U.K. post-punks perform at the University of New Orleans Lakefront Arena May 10-11

click to enlarge cure_cr_andy_vella.jpeg

Photo by Andy Vella

As opening acts for The Cure (pictured) go, The Twilight Sad seems to have been born for the job. The Scottish band — aside from being named like a game of Robert Smith Mad Libs — increasingly has sculpted its songs in an austere mirror image of The Cure's early-onset nihilism: dominating bass melodies and shrouds of guitar draped over a spiritedly dispirited U.K. weeper (boys, it turns out, love to cry). That reflection became reality for "There's a Girl in the Corner," the stately opener to fourth album Nobody Wants to Be Here and Nobody Wants to Leave (FatCat), whose B-side version (on the single "It Never Was the Same") is sung by a certain teased-out, eyes-shadowed icon in near-tears. It's the first flirtation that led to the bands shacking up on this 34-date tour (launching with these encore performances), but the attraction was there all along: in the debut Fourteen Autumns & Fifteen Winters, shades of "Fourteen Explicit Moments" and Seventeen Seconds; in James Graham's peaty delivery, echoes of a young Smith ringing out over an Islay bog; and, most explicitly, in that dusky, depressed handle, a Cure-encapsulating bitter pill-turned-perfect sundown salvo. Tickets $38-$68.

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