"Like a red snake in the water... Listen to the silence over the fear": Listen to French football legend Eric Cantona's Nick Cave/Leonard Cohen-inspired debut single The Friends We Lost

Eric Cantona
(Image credit: Professional Sport/Popperfoto via Getty Images | Universal)

French football legend Eric Cantona, who played for Manchester United and Leeds United during his highly-successful career in English football, will release his debut EP I’ll Make My Own Heaven via Decca on October 20.

The EP features four tracks - The Friends We Lost, Tu Me Diras, I’ll Make My Own Heaven and Je Veux - and Cantona has released its Nick Cave/Leonard Cohen-inspired opening track as a taste of what's to come.

In an interview this summer with The Irish Times, Cantona, 57, revealed that he was a teenage punk and metalhead - “I listened to a lot of Sex Pistols, the Clash, AC/DC and Led Zeppelin” - but cites Nick Cave, Leonard Cohen and Daniel Johnston as the last musicians who inspired him.

In a statement about his forthcoming EP, Cantona, who turned to acting after retiring from football, says, “Music has always been a part of my life. I’ve always had music playing. Why start today, so many years later? Simply because I had lacked the time before. During lockdown, I finally managed to give the guitar a serious go, and even though I’m still a poor guitarist, I felt confident enough to whip a few songs into shape.”

Listen to The Friends We Lost below:

Cantona is following the EP release with gigs in London, Manchester and Dublin. His mini tour commences at Stoller Hall in Manchester (October 26/27), then takes in a pair of shows at London’s Bloomsbury Theatre (October 28/29) before closing at Dublin’s Liberty Hall on Halloween (October 31).

In rock n' roll circles, Cantona is perhaps best known as the cover star of Ash's 1995 single Kung Fu, which featured the footballer's infamous two-footed lunge at an abusive supporter during a January 25, 1995 game between Crystal Palace and Manchester United.

“I have one regret," the footballer-turned-actor-turned-musician said in 2021. “I would have loved to have kicked him even harder.”

Ash: Kung Fu cover art

(Image credit: Infectious)
Paul Brannigan
Contributing Editor, Louder

A music writer since 1993, formerly Editor of Kerrang! and Planet Rock magazine (RIP), Paul Brannigan is a Contributing Editor to Louder. Having previously written books on Lemmy, Dave Grohl (the Sunday Times best-seller This Is A Call) and Metallica (Birth School Metallica Death, co-authored with Ian Winwood), his Eddie Van Halen biography (Eruption in the UK, Unchained in the US) emerged in 2021. He has written for Rolling Stone, Mojo and Q, hung out with Fugazi at Dischord House, flown on Ozzy Osbourne's private jet, played Angus Young's Gibson SG, and interviewed everyone from Aerosmith and Beastie Boys to Young Gods and ZZ Top. Born in the North of Ireland, Brannigan lives in North London and supports The Arsenal.