If the attackers who stormed the Bataclan and gunned down 89 people midway through Eagles Of Death Metal’s Kiss The Devil on November 13, 2015 thought they were kicking down the pillars of rock’n’roll, they picked on the wrong guys. Just three months later, EODM returned to Paris to finish their set at the Olympia, unbowed, undaunted and bristling with a fearless defiance. As this live recording of that event opens, frontman Jesse Hughes marches on stage in a regal robe, spends three minutes saluting the audience then slicks down his moustache and gets back to business, glam-rocking the ass off of Paris.
As well as a moment’s silence “to remember” and Hughes declaring: “I love you mutherfuckers so much you have no fucking idea”, it isn’t a subdued or restrained commemoration performance. Giving terror not an inch of capitulation, Hughes knee-waggles, groin-walks and horny-chicken-dances through the surgical blues riffs of Don’t Speak (I Came To Make A Bang!) as wildly as ever, maybe wilder. Without apology, he remains carnally impatient on So Easy and beloved of hookers and firearms on the groove-ridden honky-tonk of Whorehoppin (Shit, Goddamn). As a section of seamy garage rock (Cherry Cola, The Reverend) gives way to the filthy glam of I Got A SOFTWAREmark” gingersoftwareuiphraseguid=“5c9990dd-2f8f-4db8-88cc-c71ecb57d46d” id=“cd192b54-0ae7-4458-8616-39d477c2467a”>SOFTWAREmark” gingersoftwareuiphraseguid=“48f370bd-bd9f-433c-ab08-a475ff8db740” id=“32ffe417-7543-461c-93c9-fce080dac788”>SOFTWAREmark” gingersoftwareuiphraseguid=“48f370bd-bd9f-433c-ab08-a475ff8db740” id=“32ffe417-7543-461c-93c9-fce080dac788”>Feelin (Just Nineteen), he smashes his guitar on the stage and throws it into the audience, claiming it was “fucking with me and my people”. And EODM will not be fucked with, by man or machine, this night.
Spirits high, humour rising. When second drummer Julian Dorio isn’t adding heft to Josh Homme’s already thundering backbeats on Wild West Britpop tune I Love You All The Time, he’s kicking back and reading magazines; EODM pump out a full-on Status Quo cover of Stealer’s Wheel’s Stuck In The Middle renamed Stuck In The Metal, make like rabid Diamond Dogs on Miss Alissa and turn I Like To Move In The Night into a sleazebag My Sharona.
But even as they cover Duran Duran’s Save A Prayer in the style of a spaghetti western showdown, and Hughes races to the balcony for a guitar duel with Dave Catching during a final Speaking In Tongues, there’s no escaping that this is a show drenched in heartbreak and enclosed by a fundamental human unity. It ends with Hughes and Homme in an embrace and rock’n’roll rebuilt as the unquakeable fortress of western ideological freedom. Salute.