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I milanesi ammazzano il sabato

Afterhours

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Together with Marlene Kuntz, Milan's highly rated Afterhours have long been the undisputed leaders of the Italian alternative rock scene. In recent years, they have also become quite popular, regularly reaching the top spots of the Italian charts, as well as releasing and touring internationally, sharing the stage with acts such as Mercury Rev and Mark Lanegan, and earning comparisons with Queens of the Stone Age and Noir Désir. I Milanesi Ammazzano il Sabato is Afterhours' eighth studio album and the first for a major label, Universal. It was produced by Tommaso Colliva and includes guests such as John Parish on three tracks, Violent Femmes' Brian Richie on two, and Afghan Whigs' Greg Dulli (who had already produced their last album, Ballate per Piccole Iene) on the title track. I Milanesi Ammazzano il Sabato features 14 tightly condensed sonic vignettes, each packing the usual Afterhours field of references — post-punk, industrial, noise rock, even power pop — in under three minutes. Songs develop in rather free-form structures, and can speed up or slow down at will. There are virtually no choruses and words are rarely repeated, giving an impression of monologues or short stories over a background of noise layers, only to be interrupted by an acoustic pause, as in the transition between "Pochi Istanti nella Lavatrice" to "I Milanesi Ammazzano il Sabato." Some experiment with electronic pulses, such as "Dove Si Va da Qui" and "Tarantella All'inazione," as well as the first single, "Riprendere Berlino," a palpable and rather effective attempt to shoehorn the band's fiercely alternative tendencies into something that can be broadcast over mainstream radio and TV.

The melodic side of Afterhours is less in evidence on this record, but makes a late entrance with "Tutto Domani," a song that sounds like a heavy metal version of Weezer. Most of the songs deal with the squalor of contemporary urban existence, a subject explicitly acknowledged in the album title, which in turn references a novel by seminal Italian hardboiled writer Giorgio Scerbanenco. Even intimate relationships are described with a visceral, and occasionally crude, vocabulary, rendered all the more so by singer Manuel Agnelli's positively menacing delivery (the falsetto of "Tutti Gli Uomini del Presidente," on the other hand, is rather annoying). In this context, the two quasi-lullabies that bookend the album, inspired by the birth of Agnelli's first son, softly shock the listener with their unexpected tenderness in ominous clothing. Overall, however, I Milanesi Ammazzano il Sabato seems to be a transition album for Afterhours, as they seem uncertain as to the direction to follow: i.e., a return to their ear-shattering roots or a move into a quieter, more mature territory. This record will certainly satisfy Afterhours' numerous fans, but continue to discourage those people put off by the band's theatrics of abrasive gloom. I Milanesi Ammazzano il Sabato was reissued later in 2008 with a bonus disc featuring six live renditions and two new tracks, "Due di Noi" and a cover of Nirvana's "You Know You're Right."

Biographie

Formé(s) : Italy

Genre : Rock

Années d’activité : '80s, '90s, '00s, '10s

Along with Marlene Kuntz and C.S.I., Afterhours were the most important rock band to emerge from Italy in the 1990s — although their career had started the previous decade. Their energetic and extremely personal style gained them huge success and the attention of the critics, who immediately recognized the talent of their leader, singer/guitarist Manuele "Manuel" Agnelli (b. 1966), whose...
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I milanesi ammazzano il sabato, Afterhours
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