US & World

Eagles Of Death Metal become rallying point after Paris attacks

Eagles Of Death Metal performing on Day 2 of Voodoo Festival at City Park, New Orleans, Louisiana, on Oct. 30, 2010.
Eagles Of Death Metal performing on Day 2 of Voodoo Festival at City Park, New Orleans, Louisiana, on Oct. 30, 2010.

The Palm Desert rock band whose show at the Bataclan concert hall in Paris was one of the targets of the terrorist attacks on Friday is becoming a rallying point for fans and others seeking to show support for the group as well as defiance against terrorist violence.

Fans of Eagles of Death Metal have posted a Facebook page encouraging people to download one of the band's songs, "Save a Prayer," in an attempt to make it No.1 on the British pop music charts. The song is a cover of a 1992 single by the group Duran Duran.

The fan page posted this statement about its effort to boost the ranking of "Save a Prayer" — a campaign it said will continue through Thursday:

"For the record no we aren't associated with the band or their record company, we're just fans of them that feel happy to be alive as some of our fellow EODM fans are tragically not now," said a statement in the About section of the "Eagles of Death Metal for No. 1" Facebook page.

Eagles of Death Metal For No. 1 campaign on Facebook

The Telegraph in London posted this description of Eagles Of Death Metal:

The cult blues-rock group were formed by singer Jesse Hughes and drummer/guitarist Josh Homme in 1998. Best known as the frontman of Queens of the Stone Age, Homme also plays in rock supergroup Them Crooked Vultures with Foo Fighters’ Dave Grohl and Led Zeppelin’s John Paul Jones. Homme has also collaborated with Arctic Monkeys, providing backing vocals for their latest album, AM, and co-producing 2013’s Humbug.

Homme and Hughes are the only permanent members of Eagles of Death Metal, playing alongside a changing line-up of musicians. The group, who do not play death metal, chose their name as an in-joke, after a conversation in which Homme described the Polish band Vader’s style as like death metal, if it were played by Seventies rockers the Eagles.

Two people associated with the band were killed in Friday's attack, in which three gunmen armed with automatic weapons opened fire on the sellout crowd of about 1,000, killing at least 89 people and injuring many more, before getting into a standoff with police and then blowing themselves up with the suicide belts they wore.

The two dead have been identified as Nick Alexander, 36, of Colchester, England, the merchandise manager for the band; and Thomas Ayad, 32, of Amiens, France, a producer manager for Mercury Music Group, which owns the  band's recording label.

"Nick was not just our brother, son and uncle, he was everyone's best friend — generous, funny and fiercely loyal," his family said in a statement released to news media. "Nick died doing the job he loved and we take great comfort in knowing how much he was cherished by his friends around the world."

At a spontaneous memorial outside the French consulate in New York City, Polina Buckley of New York, who identified herself as Alexander's girlfriend, told a Fox News affiliate that Alexander was "the best man that ever lived."



Ayad's death was announced to employees of Universal Music Group, which owns Mercury Music, in a letter from UMG's chairman, Lucian Grainge, which was made available Saturday to the Los Angeles Times.

In the letter, Grainge said:

As many of you know, the band Eagles of Death Metal is part of the UMG and Mercury France family.  The band and its crew as well as our own teams from Mercury and other UMG staffs were present at the Bataclan theater for last night's show.

At this point, we have confirmed that Thomas Ayad, an international product manager for Mercury Records lost his life in the attack on the theater.  This is an unspeakably appalling tragedy.  I cannot even begin to express the depth of my sorrow.  On behalf of everyone here at UMG, we extend our most profound sympathies to his parents and all of his friends and family.