Roxann Yus | 03/08/2023
Rewind six months: I am sitting solemnly in my bedroom, mourning, less severely and dramatically than you think, over the fact that my boyfriend has returned to Canada after a short, sweet, yet adventurous Christmas together in Germany. I obviously turned to music to find misery’s solution, and alas, a soon-to-be-favourite of mine, Måneskin, released their critically acclaimed, heavily English, sex-infused album, RUSH!.
It didn’t take long of numbing my senses and jiggling my feet before track number three cries through my headphones. TIMEZONE, I read. Timezone? I question to myself. God, here we go.
As expected, it summed up my very unique and seemingly impossible Gen-Z experience of this year: living apart from my partner, making sacrifices and constant compromises.
Anyway, this article has no purpose (or audacity!) of digging into my romantic life or even reviewing this stunning album. It’s to review the very-Erasmus-behaviour-of-running-off-to-another-country-for-a-concert Måneskin concert in Milan. Side note: Milan is underrated – banging mountain range just next door, cheap food and drinks, very Venetian canal area; however, not as many envy-worthy outfits as I expected. People were still hot though. Especially the band I’m reviewing – oh yes, let's get back to the topic.
Rewind three days: I am sitting obnoxiously in an 80,000-capacity stadium, San Siro, surrounded by a plethora of die-hard as well as casual fans of the band, yet almost entirely and undoubtedly Italian. I heard a few American accents, but the overwhelming degree of Italian people, language, and hand signals, made this experience all the more authentic and unique.
I’d expect nothing less of mainland Europe than to begin the concert at 21:00. As in, no support acts, no waiting around for hours. The music starts at 21:00. Actually, the music started at around 21:16. But this was Italian 21:00.
We had the unfortunate ‘advantage’ of sitting opposite the side of the stage. Ostensibly, these were possibly the worst seats in the entire stadium. But, don’t fret, these seats had the perfectly exclusive view of the band coming on and off of the stage, and we somehow felt intrinsically part of their backstage rituals that I daily swooned over on their Instagram stories.
It was the best ‘people watching’ seat in the building, but perhaps the word ‘people’ is too casual to describe four icons. These icons, indeed, proved their icon status throughout the evening: modernly classic rock instrumentals, bedazzled and undazzled (as in, their clothes came off) outfits, and acoustic vocals that sent shockwaves through the form of goosebumps and dropped jaws. And I do not think the sound system can be credited for the power and range of Damiano’s voice, especially when the sound was pretty rocky at the beginning, and certainly couldn’t be captured justly on video.
But what could be accurately captured was that the crowd turned into an anarchistic choir during their Italian songs, but as quiet as a church after mass during the English ones. That meant that Ben and I had the large and important responsibility of carrying the atmosphere during almost all of the songs from RUSH!.
We were constantly reminded of how big the crowd was as we sat in, let me remind you, this unfortunately advantageous segment. This meant that towards the end of the show we both thought independently about the risks involved with getting home on time as we had a 7:00 FlixBus back to Germany. We made the difficult decision to leave a couple of songs early so we wouldn't miss one or one hundred metro trains back to the centre. Reminder: there were 80,000 people headed back to Milan.
Despite the abrupt and somehow hypocritical ending for us, we continued singing Måneskin's English songs on the way home. Now I think of it: who sang the songs after we left, then? Either way, a band this iconic needn't any more than themselves, their instruments, and some sequins to keep the atmosphere alive.
Edited by: Roxann Yus
Cover image courtesy: Roxann Yus