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Rock-en-Seine 2009, Part 2: The Return of Offspring & Faith No More

Another sunny day at Rock-en-Seine for Saturday August 29th, and another sold-out day for tickets. The big headliners for the evening were Offspring and Faith No More, both California bands who hadn’t been on tour for many years. Here are some pics and links:

The Haribo bonbon tent is always a popular place. Check out those giant strawberries!

The Papaya Thai tent wasn’t getting much action, even though the food was advertised as organic and vegetarian. It just didn’t look good, IMHO.

Back in the VIP section (press, guests of the bands, and anyone who paid for the pass), there is an actual restaurant with tables, napkins, and table mats. Très posh.

Dressing up will get you on the big screen (although taking it off also works).

The funnier you look, the easier it is for your friends to find you, too.

Offspring fans going crazy to “Come Out and Play”.

Offspring played all of their hits, they played them well. And heck, all one needs to do is actually SHOW UP AND PLAY to get respect at Rock-en-Seine these days, but I couldn’t help but notice how the band didn’t really engage the crowd at all. No talking, one sentence of thanks. But hats off to the entertaining “Intermission” (this video also shows how quickly the crowd went from calm and happy to watch jugglers, to out of control dancing and shoving).

The chasm between the crowd and the stage has grown larger and larger each year. The guards wait to whisk away the crowd-surfers and injured fans, making sure no one has a chance to leap onto the stage.

Yours truly during a relatively calm moment between Offspring songs.

Here’s a great compilation someone did of the Offspring concert, with shots of the dustcloud forming in the center of the dancing (when it was still “small”).

The crowd waits for Faith No More to begin. Not hard to be patient a few minutes longer when they’ve already waited 11 years for the band to reunite!

When the band finally walked out onto the stage, they were wearing pastel suits (like they were going to prom), and opened with the classic R&B song “Reunited”. They later they sang “Easy” by Lionel Ritchie, the Bee Gees’ “I Started a Joke“, and their own version of “Chariots of Fire” to intro “Stripsearch”, in between their classic funk and death metal songs. And I must say that Bill Patton’s voice hasn’t aged at all, because he sounded just as good as he did in the 90s.

Here is a great video of the last song of the night, Just A Man, with a bit of teasing commentary (the French armpit quip is hilarious!) and an amazing ending.

Roddy Bottum got a pretty good laugh when trying his French. Later on Twitter he write: “I meant to say, in the mic, to 34,000 people… ‘je suis tres content,’ I am very happy… not ‘je suis tres jolie,’ I am very pretty”

Expectations exceeded with a genuinely fun show.

Afterwards, the late-night “after” show was performed by Birdy Nam Nam, a French electronic group of DJs similar to Justice or Daft Punk. Someone in the crowd told me the group, made up of guys from the ghetto suburbs of Paris, met in prison. Go figure.

Here are some clips from the show here and here.

Stay tuned for more photos from Rock-en-Seine Day 3!

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