Three years since their last show in Paris—a headliner supported by the Maine in a booking mishmash—Billy Talent were back in Paris on October 27 in the newly reopened venue, l’Elysée Montmartre.
The band was supported by their country fellows in Say Yes, who for their first-ever show in Paris, tried to warm up the audience, which was still entering the venue, or arriving mid-set (some even arrived around 9pm, when Billy Talent started).
The second performance of the night was from a British band well waited in Paris. Young Guns hadn’t played in Paris in four years, while still touring the U.S., with many U.K. tours and some mainland Europe tours as well. The show was similar to their set at Slam Dunk, with some technical difficulties and mostly new songs from the band’s latest albums, One And Zeros and Echoes, eventually concluding their set with the lively “Bones.”
The backdrop rises, fans start chanting the band name, the lights turn off, and Billy Talent appear on stage. It didn’t take long for the fans to sing back the lyrics from the charismatic frontman Ben Kowalewicz, jumping everywhere on stage. As songs were played, mosh pits grew bigger, crowd surfing heavier, and the venue got warmer, sweatier. The extreme show was balanced by Kowalewicz congratulating, supporting, and cheering Paris and its music fans for staying strong after the terror attacks in November 2015. After huge applause and cheering from the sold-out venue, the show started again, heavy as ever.