On 12 August 1986, Simple Minds conquered Paris. The multi-platinum Scottish band were in what Jim Kerr has latterly called their “pomp and circumstance” when they arrived in the French capital to play that night at Le Zénith.
Just to make sure the world could hear all about it, they recorded that night’s concert, and the following night’s, as the basis of the double album they would proudly unveil the following May, Live In The City Of Light. The Parisian adventure came two months after the band had headlined the Milton Keynes Bowl Pop Festival, where the bill also featured the Bangles, Lloyd Cole & the Commotions, The Cult, Big Audio Dynamite and others.
The international Simple Minds tour of 1986 came in the wake of a triumphant year in which they hit the top of the UK album chart with Once Upon A Time and smashed the American market with ‘Don’t You (Forget About Me),’ their US No. 1 from the soundtrack of The Breakfast Club. They followed with further huge American sales for ‘Alive And Kicking’ and the further rock radio staples ‘Sanctify Yourself,’ ‘All The Things She Said’ and ‘Ghost Dancing.’ That Once Upon A Time set would eventually go triple platinum in the UK, and gold in the US.
All those songs apart from ‘All The Things She Said’ became part of the double album package created at those Paris shows, with one further track recorded in Sydney that October. Live In The City Of Light included such early Minds numbers, already cast-iron favourites, such as ‘Waterfront,’ ‘Promised You A Miracle,’ ‘Love Song’ and ‘New Gold Dream (81/82/83/84).’ The live record only reached No. 96 in the US, but back in Britain, it became their third UK No. 1 album in a row.
Live In The City Of Light can be bought here.