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Stiff Little Fingers show stiff upper lip as Paris gig goes ahead

Published 17/11/2015

Jesse Hughes, of Eagles Of Death Metal, who were due to perform at the Bataclan concert hall in Paris before Friday's terror attacks (AP)
Jesse Hughes, of Eagles Of Death Metal, who were due to perform at the Bataclan concert hall in Paris before Friday's terror attacks (AP)

A Northern Ireland punk band have vowed to play their scheduled gig in Paris tonight.

Members of the Stiff Little Fingers said their experience of the Troubles, and the frustration about bands not coming to Belfast during the conflict, motivated their decision to carry on with the show despite Friday's terror attacks.

The band, which rose to prominence during the punk movement of the late 1970s, said they hoped to see as many fans as possible at the Backstage by the Mill venue next to the Moulin Rouge.

A post by a band member on the Stiff Little Fingers' Facebook page said: "Our sincere condolences go out to everyone affected by the Parisian tragedies. The music business is often sheltered from the harsh realities of life and this weekend they have come home with a dreadful finality."

The statement said there had been a lot of confusion as to whether tonight's gig had been cancelled in the wake of the murders at the Eagles Of Death Metal gig at Paris's Bataclan theatre.

"When we were growing up in Belfast, I was always saddened by the fact that groups would never come and play there because of the political situation. I was deprived of another 'normal' part of life," the band statement added.

"With this in mind, and with the wonderful co-operation of our Parisian promoter, the S.L.F. show at Backstage at the Mill, WILL GO AHEAD AS ADVERTISED.

"I hope to see as many of you there as possible."

Several bands have cancelled gigs in France in the wake of the attacks.

US rock giants the Foo Fighters were due to play in the French capital on Monday night, Lyon on Tuesday night and Barcelona on Thursday night.

In a post on Facebook, the band wrote: "It is with profound sadness and heartfelt concern for everyone in Paris that we have been forced to announce the cancellation of the rest of our tour.

"In light of this senseless violence, the closing of borders, and international mourning, we can't continue right now.

"There is no other way to say it. This is crazy and it sucks. Our thoughts and prayers are with everyone who was hurt or who lost a loved one."

Irish rockers U2 also cancelled their Paris shows at the weekend.

Speaking from the city the band said: ''We watched in disbelief and shock at the unfolding events in Paris and our hearts go out to all the victims and their families across the city.

"We are devastated at the loss of life at the Eagles of Death Metal concert and our thoughts and prayers are with the band and their fans."

The band later paid their respects at the Bataclan.

American alternative metal group Deftones, who had been set to play a three-night run at the Bataclan, said they "must return home to our loved ones". As well as the Paris shows, they had been due to play in Germany and London.

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