By Naomi Clarke, PA Entertainment Reporter
Maneskin frontman Damiano David has said he is “still upset” about the disproven allegations that he took drugs during Eurovision 2021, adding: “I think it’s dumb to tarnish the victory”.
Following the Italian rock group’s win at the song contest, the singer was accused of taking drugs after he was caught on camera appearing to bend over a table in the contest’s green room.
The band “strongly refuted the allegations of drug use” at the time, and the European Broadcasting Union later confirmed David had returned a negative result in a drugs test following the event.
Reflecting on the allegations, David told The Guardian: “I am still upset about it, actually. I think it’s dumb to tarnish the victory at Eurovision.
“I think we should go back and hand flowers around.”
He added: “I think the view people have of us, and of me, it’s very off-target.
“People think we behave like the Sex Pistols, or Motley Crue, but we’re nothing like that.
“We’ve got more educated on the risks of drugs and how they affect your body. I don’t even drink alcohol any more.”
The rock band – consisting of David, bassist Victoria De Angelis, guitarist Thomas Raggi and drummer Ethan Torchio – were also runners-up on the Italian version of The X Factor in 2017, but later garnered international recognition following their Eurovision win.
David revealed that prior to Eurovision, the group went through a “very tough year” where people were trying to stop them from making their style of music or entering the song contest.
“Nobody believed in us. So we had this feeling of being the underdogs that won”, he said.
Despite their success now, De Angelis admitted the group still faces judgmental remarks, saying: “Some of the stupid comments we get are probably because of (having done The X Factor and Eurovision).
“People are so narrow-minded that they can’t see beyond the idea that if we went on Eurovision we must be shit.
“They can’t listen to our songs with an open mind and judge them based on what they really think.”
She added: “The whole concept of rock music is not conforming to what society would love you to be.
“It’s ignoring those made-up rules and being yourself. We don’t think real rock music is about these stereotypes of the sex and drugs and rock ’n’ roll lifestyle.
“It’s about expression and creative freedom.”
The group are currently in the running for the Grammy award in the best new artist category and have just released their third studio album, Rush!
To mark the album’s release on Friday, the group shared a video of all the band members getting ready for a wedding before they take to the alter to get collectively “married”.
They captioned the post: “Married in a RUSH! So happy to share this special moment together. RUSH! – the new album is out now.”