Last night in Paris, U2 brought Eagles of Death Metal, the band that was performing at the Bataclan Concert Hall during the Paris terror attacks of November 13, to the stage for the final night of their Innocence + Experience world tour.
It marked the first time Eagles of Death Metal, an American band, had returned to Paris since the attacks.
“There’s nothing left but to introduce you to some people whose lives will forever be a part of the life of Paris,” Bono said. “These are our brothers. They were robbed of their stage three weeks ago, and we would like to offer them ours tonight.”
Together before a crowd of 34,000 at the Accord Hotels arena, just miles from where the horrific attacks took place, U2 and Eagles of Death Metal sang the Patti Smith anthem “Power to the People.” Smith had performed the same song with U2 during their first Paris concert on Sunday night.
The men from U2 then left the stage, letting Eagles of Death Metal perform their song “I Love You All the Time. Just last week, the California-based band had asked other singes to record covers of that song and requested that all proceeds be donated to the families of the victims of the Bataclan attack.
Eagles of Death Metal were performing at the Bataclan on the night of November 13, when three gunmen stormed into the concert hall and fired shots into the audience. The bandmates –including Jesse Hughes, Julian Dorio, Eden Galindo and Matt McJunkins – managed to escape to safety, but 89 of the concert-goers were killed that night, including their merchandise manager Nicky Alexander.
U2 had been scheduled to play two Paris concerts on November 14 and 15, but postponed them until December.
“We felt the biggest and the only real contribution we can make at a moment like that is to honor the people of Paris, who brought us the concept of liberté, égalité, fraternité,” Bono told the New York Times, explaining the imperative he and the rest of U2 felt to keep their commitment to perform. “ISIS and these kinds of extremists are a death cult. We’re a life cult.”
"For one night, the killers took lives, took music, took peace of mind – but they couldn't steal the spirit of that city,” he added in statement on the U2 website.
Today, the Eagles of Death Metal returned to the Bataclan Concert Hall to visit the memorial to the victims.