Why Was An Eagles Of Death Metal Concert A Target? The American Band Was Performing At Paris' Bataclan Concert Hall
At least 120 people are dead following a night of terror in Paris that included six attacks, including at the Stade de France, where a friendly soccer match between Germany and France was taking place, a restaurant, and at the Bataclan concert hall during a sold-out Eagles of Death Metal show. But why was the Eagles of Death Metal concert a target? Authorities are still looking for answers.
The American hard rock band was in Paris playing a show during what was supposed to be the first stop of its most recent European tour in support of its latest album, Zipper Down, which was released Oct. 2. During the Friday night performance in Paris at the Bataclan concert hall, gunmen launched what would become the deadliest attack of the night, holding 100 people hostage during an assault that left at least 80 people dead, according to reports.
While a timeline of what went on inside the concert hall at the time of the attacks is still unclear, Stereogum published photos of the Eagles of Death Metal performing earlier in the evening, meaning the assault must have taken place either during or after their performance.
Michael Dorio, brother of the band's drummer Julian Dorio, told Atlanta's Channel 2 Action News that the violence began not long after the shows started. He told reporters:
"He said they were playing, about six songs into the show, they heard, before they saw anything, they heard automatic machine gunfire. It was so loud, it was louder than the band, and they hit the stage floor. As they got up to try to evacuate they saw men with machine guns just shooting anything and everything in the venue."
Eye-witnesses of the assault at the 150-year-old Bataclan concert hall said gunmen carrying assault rifles and shouting "Allahu akbar" opened fire on concert-goers, according to The New York Times. The attackers took at least 100 people hostage before French police were able to storm the theater.
One witness described the night's events as a "blood bath." Radio reporter Julien Pearce told CNN:
"People yelled, screamed. It lasted for 10 minutes. Ten horrific minutes where everybody was on the floor covering their head."
All of the Eagles of Death Metal band members are reported to have made it out of the venue safely. The band's scheduled performance for Nov. 14 at Le Grand Mix was canceled in light of the attacks. According to New York Magazine's Vulture, the rest of the Eagles of Death Metal European tour has been canceled as well.
It is still unclear why the Eagles of Death Metal show was targeted, although as the Christian Science Monitor points out, it likely has to do with the fact that the Western band was expected to draw large crowds to its performance. While ISIS has claimed responsibility for the attacks, a motive has yet to be determined.