Because we had to get by Lille anyway to get back to Holland, we decided to accept Billy's invitation and go to the concert in Lille, at a place called l'Aeronef, on Wednesday December 10. It was the last show of the tour, so we were looking forward to seeing Faith No More one last time. We had no problems finding the hall, which was strangely located on the third floor of some hyper-modern technocratic building with offices and a shopping mall. We decided to skip Radish and hung out in the bar before the concert, where we met a lot of nice people like the chairman of the French Faith No More fanclub, and some guys from Belgium. Here's the setlist for this final chapter:
- midnight cowboy
- "this town ain't big enough for the both of us" (Sparks)
- midlife crisis
- naked in front of the computer
- ashes to ashes
- introduce yourself
- the gentle art of making enemies
- last cup of sorrow
- land of sunshine
- king for a day
- we care a lot
- get out
- just a man
- "this guy's in love with you" (burt Bacharach)
- as the worm turns
- "highway star" (deep purple, edited and cut down to 45 seconds)
Again, very good crowd reception although not as good as in Paris. There's not much to tell about this show except that, again, I liked it a lot. I really think FNM have improved enormously since the ill-received early summer dates. Highlights were the highly dramatized Midnight Cowboy, the Sparks tune which is just absolutely amazing, Ashes To Ashes, Last Cup Of Sorrow, and the always brilliant Land Of Sunshine. There was some nice between-song banter before The Gentle Art..., where Patton explained to the crowd that "Lille" is pronounced as "Lyle" by Americans. He then proceeded to include the word "Lyle" at various points in the lyrics of a completely over-the-top rendition of The Gentle Art... Again, NO Epic, which brings a smile to my face. Don't get me wrong, I still think it's a great live song, but it's nice to not hear it after all these years. And, as the night before in Paris, the encores were totally amazing. The Bacharach tune is just a brilliant showcase for Patton's upcoming career as a Vegas character. After that, I was expecting Be Aggressive again, but much to my delight they played As The Worm Turns, which I haven't heard live in years (since the Angel Dust tour, probably). The second encore started out with some improvisational rumblings, with Patton announcing it was Serge Gainsbourg, Yves Montand, Jacques Brel, and whoever else is a famous French chansonnier. Then they played a much shortened version of Highway Star, which was incredibly comic. Billy told me afterwards they played it because it was such a stupid song, and it made them laugh. After that, Pristina was the perfect set-closer.
Oh yeah, at one point in the set, Billy and Mike started to tell the audience who lucky they were, because FNM had been working for the past six months to create the PERFECT setlist, and the Lille audience got the cream of the pie because this was the last date of the tour, and the setlist had finally reached the point of perfection. "Does this sound perfect to you?".
After the show, we had the chance to talk to Billy and the two Mikes, and all are really amiable guys. I have to thank Billy again for inviting us, and for the drinks and the pizza of course. Discussing setlists with Mike Bordin, he told me that he "loved all his children". His particular favorites turned out to tunes like Chinese Arithmetic and Mouth To Mouth. We discussed Malpractice and Smaller and Smaller, which according to Mike were just too difficult to play live due to the extreme usage of layering in the sound.
All in all, there were no regrets that we had made this little detour on our way home. A wonderful experience, although I thought the Paris show was better than the Lille show.