Saturday 11th, Madrid, meeting night again. With those that you apparently only see in the right occasions. With Date at Midnight, who I last saw live 15 years ago. It was quite more time with Corpus Delicti, 28 years to be precise. And actually, in the same place, in Moby Dick Hall (where I saw Date at Midnight in 2008, even though it’s been renewed), but I had been here just a month ago. Of course, I also encountered my friends of Endemoniada promotions and All Waves. Definitely, a night of encounters. Special night, one of those you’ll probably remember your whole life.

It started with nervousness, a variety of difficulties and uncertainty. If anyone says that arranging something like this (or pretty much anything, a radio program, web, magazine, etc., even though it’s more obvious in this case) it’s easy, they have never gotten anything off the ground. There are so many things that can turn out differently or directly go wrong that how it went -congratulations to the already named organizers- is an authentic miracle. That night, it didn’t look good, but luckily it all went beautifully. Date at Midnight’s album is prominent, but they quickly proved that live, they’re outstanding. Them matching perfectly, the enraged drums, sharp guitars -the great Francesco and Manuel-, Pasquale’s really powerful basses and Daniele’s voice and scenic presence (of the four of them really, even if people usually focus on the vocalist) could be savored since the very first song. It is true that opening the show with Traumstadt is kind of cheating though.

They then went through a few songs from all they’ve done, such as No Love, Beautiful Lie or Waves, getting the crowd to warm up (large audience by the way, the room was packed) and from down there they were highly enjoyed. The romans are amazing, and as I said before, they’re even better live. Apart from playing a couple new songs -can’t wait for them to release a new album- there were two outstanding moments: Cold Modern World, “interrupted” by Daniele’s proposal to his girl, at the bottom of the stage, and as exciting as singular, and, specifically the fabulous interpretation of the banger Lights Off / Lights On. Mr. De Angelis, accompanied by two powerful lanterns, using that as pretty much the only lightening, they pulled off an equally simple and impressive scenography. The perfect accessory to one of my favorite songs. Beautiful. They concluded with another new song, at the moment, at least according to the “official” setlist, unnamed. The only possible objection would be the brevity of the show, understandable due to the circumstances, but it left me (and I’d dare to say it left us) with the desire of more. Hopefully, when the long-awaited album comes out, they come back with a full set.

It was already time for another reencounter with Corpus Delicti. Sebastien, Franck, Chris and Laurent standing in for Roma (you can listen/read the reason here) and the feeling that time hasn’t passed by. From the beginning of Firelight (if opening the show with Traumstadt is cheating, what to say about opening up with Twilight), the feeling that only a few months have passed since October 95’ runs though my body. A few months that I must say have felt like eternity… Noxious (The Demon’s Game) increases that feeling. Specially when verifying that even with the years that have passed and the obvious (also noticeable in the crowd) change of appearance, the band still transmits the same from stage. Truth is that from the whole setlist (so far the same for the whole tour) is indisputable: Dancing Ghost, Absent Friend, Dust and Fire, Motherland (beautiful interpretation), Staring, Appealing Skies, The Smile of Grace (I didn’t want to know what they’d play beforehand and I must admit I wasn’t expecting this one).

Of course, hits such as Patient couldn’t be left out (as if the other ones weren’t hits already). At this point, people’s going crazy, they’re singing, screaming and even chanting over Mr. Pietrapiana’s incredible voice. Same happens with Lorelei, Broken or, obviously, Saraband. I must state again that this would be time travelling if I didn’t have the feeling still that I’m 23 again. Like if I had just turned 23. I feel light there’s something similar mainly in Franck and Sebastien’s smiles. They’re enjoying this just as much as we are, or so it seems like. And it’s noticeable, very noticeable. I don’t think any of the people in the crowd that night could have any objections to give. Everything sounds great, the lights and the smoke accompany and emphasize the musical. Chris basses set the pace of each song and no one’s missed in the drums. Franck, in the guitar, is as great as always and Sebastien’s voice and interpretation rise with zero doubts to the occasion and are as good as they were. Which is a lot to say.

13 songs have been played so far, and only the encore is left, even if the people in the first row is already trying to get the setlist. Pretty impatient. Encore is opened with one of the group’s classic covers: Joy Division’s Atmosphere. After that, Twilight. Another uplift, one more. And then the essential (which must be listened to together, as in my opinion, it’s only one song) The Lake … and … Of All Desperations. You know it’s all over and don’t want it to happen even though it’s inevitable. You also know that you’d be feeling the same way if they had sung 27 songs instead of 17. But most of all, you know all you have left is to hold on to the “weirdness” of All That Scares. One of those songs where no one gets why it wasn’t released officially, because it’s awesome. Those basses that remind you of OMD, the phrasing… the perfect ending for an also perfect night.

The concert had finished and all that was left to do was meet and talk, honoring the rest of the “arranged” encounters I was talking about at the beginning. And take the opportunity to take a look at the plentiful merchandising and to the not less plentiful kindness and sympathy of both the Italian and the French, who dedicated a while to take pictures, sign stuff, talk and all that any of the present would ask for. There’s also left to thank Endemoniada and All Waves for the immense effort that I know it takes to organize something this big and also congratulate them for the impeccable organization and the success of it all. It’s nice to see that sometimes, unfortunately not always, effort is awarded. I’ll finish up with a curious fact: Sebastien and Daniele had the same tattoo in their right forearm. Any explanations? I know curiosity killed the cat but… it saved more than one human being.  Bowie and Blackstar are to blame.

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