ARTICLES (4.18.02)

Siouxsie & the Banshees, forerunners of the goth-punk scene in the late '70s, are on the comeback trail. The band kicked off a brief tour Wednesday night (April 17) in Washington D.C. It runs through April 25 in San Francisco. It's the band's first tour in seven years.

The band has had some notable members over its career, including the Sex Pistols' Sid Vicious, who had a brief stint as their drummer, and the Cure's Robert Smith, who played guitar in the band.

Smith told LAUNCH how he hooked up with the Banshees. "The only support slot we ever did was in 1979 was on a Banshees U.K. tour and it was during that tour that the original Banshees line-up split up," he recalled. "And I just guested on guitar kind of, played with the Cure and then came off at 20 minutes and a couple of beers and then went back on and did the main set."

Smith told LAUNCH about the biggest decision of his career. "The guitarist at the time kind of left the group and they just came back to me and said, 'Oh do you fancy filling in while we find someone else.' Because they were just about to tour--and then I ended up staying 18 months. And at the end it came down to a straightforward choice, either I stay in the Banshees or dedicate more time, all my time, to the Cure. There was never any contest, but it caused a lot of ill feelings at the time. It still rankles with Sioux particularly that I chose the Cure over the Banshees, she could never understand that, but I think I made the right choice in retrospect."

Siouxsie & the Banshees' first hit was "Hong Kong Garden," and other notables recorded by the band over its career include "Dazzle," "Peekaboo," "Happy House," "Kiss Them For Me," and a cover of the Beatles' "Dear Prudence."

-- Darren Davis, New York

Back to Articles