- 08 Dec 15
Veteran rock journalist Jean-Pierre Sabouret was at Le Bataclan the night of the horrific attack that left 89 dead. He checks in with Hot Press having been there to see the return of Eagles of Death Metal last night
Last night, the second of U2's rescheduled concerts in Paris saw Bono and the boys invite Eagles of Death Metal to take the stage, mere weeks after the American rockers witnessed the horror of the savage attack on Le Bataclan.
In the audience on that fateful evening was Jean-Pierre Sabouret, a veteran rock journalist based in Paris - and he was understandably moved to see the triumphant return of Jesse Hughes and co.
"I really appreciated U2 inviting them," he tells Hot Press this morning. "It was clear they were very generous; they played a song together, but then left the stage to EODM, so they could finish it themselves."
Needless to say, the band were rapturously received - not least by a group of some 15-20 from Le Bataclan who were there for the much-anticipated show, which was captured for posterity by HBO's cameras. You'd figure the band's popularity is now symbolic to Parisians, though Jean-Pierre points out they weren't short of a fan or two before.
"You must remember that the show at Le Bataclan was a 1500 sell-out, and that was their second Paris show of the year; they packed out Le Trianon back in June, which is a similar size."
That said, the arrival of U2 means something different.
"The crowd was singing along - and that’s not so common for a French audience! That’s when you know there is love from a French crowd, when they do their homework and learn every song."
Those expecting lengthy rhetoric from Bono found his messages limited to a few short phrases; those expecting a political rally instead found a rock show; but that, says Jean-Pierre, is just what was needed.
"We can say after the tragic events that the rock world, or the entertainment world, has changed deeply. But from the first note, everyone in the band and in the crowd acted as normal. Maybe in the back of the mind there was more emotion, I don't know, but for me, it’s the perfect answer. Everyone does their job, as normal. The bus driver does his job, the person in the shop does his job, and the rock band puts on show.
"And no-one could feel cheated at a U2 show, that's for sure!"