With a 2015 Mercury Prize nomination and four 2016 Grammy nominations under her belt, Florence + The Machine embarked on a worldwide tour to promote their third album How Big, How Blue, How Beautiful. The last show of the second leg sees Florence and her musicians in Milan.
Though she is a few minutes late, Florence appears on stage from below, exchanging flowers and kisses with those in the front rows. The set design is simple. Behind the six musicians and two backing vocalists shimmers a whole wall made of silver tiles.
The set list is full of new songs like What Kind Of Man, Ship To Wreck and Queen Of Peace, along with the inevitable past successes such as Dog Days Are Over, Shake It Out and You’ve Got The Love.
Florence and her band hypnotise the crowd made of 12,000 people at the Forum. It is impossible not to follow the rhythm and let yourself go for the whole length of the show. Her sound is energetic full of emotion and joy. The atmosphere offers an immense sense of liberation but, with a moment as intimate as the acoustic version of Cosmic Love, accompanied only by the sound of the harp and its beautiful dark lyrics “You left me in the dark\ No dawn, no day, I’m always in this twilight \ In the shadow of your heart”, she creates something that’s hard to forget.
Florence is a force of nature. Singing and dancing and running around the stage barefoot for the whole show only stopping for a moment, inviting her fans to turn off their phones and live in the moment for the song Third Eye. She wants everyone to enjoy the show “with their eyes, with their ears and with one another”.
Song after song the crowd is always more glowing and enthusiastic and so is the band.
Florence + The Machine come back on stage for the encore, ending the night with Mother, Which Witch and Drumming Song.
Everything about Florence on stage is empowering, her music, her presence and even her strange charisma.
Her moves are so theatrical and her high and thin voice is almost angelic but she is very human and earthly picking flower crowns her fans throw at her. She gives the feeling she is constantly immersing herself in the depths of her soul in order to offer the best that she can to her audience.
Words by Giovanna Paglino