The Cult Energized For 2006 Tour

After a three-and-a-half year break, veteran rock act the Cult will return to the road this spring.

After a three-and-a-half year break, veteran rock act the Cult will return to the road this spring. The group, which features core members Ian Astbury and Billy Duffy, is in the midst of auditions and rehearsals ahead of the March 1 North American tour kick-off in San Francisco. Additional international shows are also being considered for later in the year.

The Cult was last active in 2002, when it toured in support of the previous year's Atlantic album "Beyond Good and Evil." But Astbury describes the experience to Billboard.com as "soul destroying. After going through that whole major-label experience when the industry was in its death knell, it left a horrible taste in my mouth. I really didn't want to be a part of it any more."

He spent the next few years performing with the Doors Of The 21st Century and enjoying extensive travel around the world. "Having done it for nearly three years, the Cult started to come back to me. I was missing it and missing the music. I missed performing with Billy," Astbury says.

Astbury and Duffy are already conceptualizing the set list for the tour, which will blend favorites like "She Sells Sanctuary," "Fire Woman," "Wild Flower" and "Love Removal Machine" with more obscure items such as "American Gothic," "Gone" and "Witch." Says Astbury, "We might reaching further into [1994's 'The Cult'], which we skimmed over in a lot of ways. I'd really like to perform some more songs from that."

Astbury is hopeful that new Cult music could be a byproduct of the reunion, reporting that he's been "writing songs that are appropriate for the Cult. There's got to be some sort of creative aspect to this."

But most of all, he's excited to be performing the Cult's music in front of an audience again. "We've booked these shows and we're going to have a blast doing it," he says. "When I get on that stage, I've seen a lot of the world recently and I feel a desire to share that."

Here are the Cult's tour dates:

March 1: San Francisco (Fillmore)
March 3: Las Vegas (the Joint)
March 4: San Diego (House of Blues)
March 5: Cabazon, Calif. (Key Club)
March 7: Los Angeles (Fonda Theatre)
March 8: Tempe, Ariz. (Marquee Theatre)
March 10: Dallas (Ridglea Theatre)
March 11: Houston (Warehouse)
March 12: Austin, Texas (La Zona Rosa)
March 14: Tulsa, Okla. (Cain's)
March 15: Minneapolis (First Avenue)
March 17: Chicago (Vic Theatre)
March 18: Cleveland (House of Blues)
March 19: Detroit (Emerald Theatre)
March 21: Buffalo, N.Y. (Town Ballroom)
March 22: Boston (Avalon)
March 24: Washington, D.C. (9:30 Club)
March 25: Atlantic City, N.J. (House of Blues)
March 26: New York (Nokia Theatre)