“They will not control us. We will be victorious” – something like “they won’t control us. We will overcome”, sang in chorus Uprising at the top of their voices, and under a rain which was relentlessly falling, the tens of thousands of people who attended the concert of Muse, this Saturday, at Rock in Rio. Matt Bellamy’s band and their cry of revolt closed the first day of the festival’s return after a break due to the covid-19 pandemic.
The masks were rarely seen in Bela Vista Park, Lisbon, where Britain’s Muse headlined the opening day. Bellamy’s band (vocals, guitar and keyboards), Chris Wholstenholme (bass and backing vocals) and Dominic Howard (guitar) opened the concert at Mundo Stage with will of the people, with a Bellamy hidden behind a silver mask. And he never lost the pedal, parading older hits and new songs.
The rain failed to demobilize the legion of reveling fans Won’t back downwhich brought the first moment of fire to leave the scene, with Compliance a rain of blue and white ribbons fell from the sky, Madness he put the whole room with his arms in the air waving, Stars light brings Bellamy down from the stage and waves to the audience from close quarters, before another downpour, this time from confess whites, announced the end of the concert.
But the encore was missing, which would bring the Bellamy, Wholstenholme and Howard company onto the stage: a huge helmeted skeleton puppet appeared to accompany kill or be killed and the final apotheosis with Cydonia Knights. The lyrics on the giant screens helped even the most distracted fans follow Bellamy in a song that started with the Wholstenholme harmonica and ended with the closing fireworks of the first day. And with lots of wet but happy fans.
Before that, the afternoon on the Mundo stage had started with the unstoppable Xutos & Pontapés. The Rock in Rio totalists couldn’t be absent and they all started singing and jumping, ending with the little house. Liam Gallagher followed, always between the irascible and the provocative, interspersing songs from Oasis and his solo career. Closed English doesn’t seem to have made communication any easier at times, but everyone noticed the footballing reference to Bernardo Silva and Rúben Dias, Portuguese players from his beloved Manchester City. And nothing like wall of wonders so that everyone understands each other at the end.
After the break that took Simone de Oliveira and a message of peace on stage, Le Nacional took the stage. And if it was their 18th concert in Portugal, Matt Berninger’s group performed with the same emotion as if it were their first. And there was no shortage of greetings to the toboggan adventurers or the “scary” angels.