PARIS (Reuters) - As teenagers French rockers The Tatianas were so inspired by British act The Libertines, they formed a band and went looking for gigs.
So it was only natural that six years later the gallic trio would open for their hero, former Libertines and Dirty Pretty Things frontman Carl Barat, at new Parisian venue Le Trianon.
"It's a great honor to be opening for Carl" The Tatianas lead singer and guitarist Pierre Hesling, 22, told Reuters.
Barat, 32, who released a self-titled debut solo album last October, was wrapping up in Paris a two-month tour.
The singer and guitarist, who reunited with his former Libertines bandmates for two triumphant gigs at the Leeds and Reading festivals last August, recently quashed rumors he would again join forces with Pete Doherty this Summer.
He told Reuters there was no plan at this stage for a third Libertines album and was already planning a second solo album.
The Tatianas, who sing in English and also cite The Clash and The Pogues as key influences, have built a reputation at home for electric live performances, well-crafted songs and the rare ability to wow a crowd.
The band, which also includes bassplayer Timothee Imhaus, 25, and drummer Lois David, 24, released a debut album "Verses & Verve or the Lost Causes" in 2010 and a 5-track EP "The Brilliant Rubbish" last January.
Barat and Hesling spoke to Reuters about their plans and the bonds between them while relaxing backstage after the show.
Q: The Libertines along with The Strokes have been credited with revitalising guitar rock and inspiring a new generation of musicians. How do you feel about it?
A: (Barat) : I will never have that hubris to say we started it. But we were lucky enough to be in that place at that time. I think it's wonderful if we can be open enough to give each other something back. It keeps growing and it's evolving and to be part of that lineage, that's a great thing. I am proud of that.
Q: What did The Tatianas learn from The Libertines ?
A: (Hesling): The Libertines gave us the drive to dare going in front of an audience. Before that, we were writing songs in our bedrooms in the suburbs. The Libertines were rough and free. Bands like The Strokes made us go buy rock CDs again but The Libertines made us want to go on a stage to own it.
A: (Barat): If there was ever a message from The Libertines, it was that of spirit. I recently told a kid in Belgium that no-one needs to play guitar that well, if you get the emotion and you connect, that is all there is to it. I relate to Pierre because when I watch his band, I see the energy, I see the truth. They are not faking it or acting.
Q: Carl, what other French bands do you feel close to ?
A: (Barat): The BB Brunes, they craft pop songs with melodies, which I really like. They seem quite innocent, which I also quite like. But I would not want the BB Brunes to help me in a fight, I would want The Tatianas.
Q: What's next for you now ?
A: (Barat) : Take care of the baby. I've got some acting things coming up and also think about the next album. I am also writing a screenplay.
I am also thinking about this band idea, just get a few musicians to play to get the energy and anger we kind of missed on this solo record which is quite mellow, maybe do an EP and a few gigs without any band commitment.
Q: Is there any chance of a third Libertines album ?
A: (Barat) : Pete and I have a very complex relationship. Right now, I do not see how doing a Libertines record would be of any good to us. The Libertines are something we brought back, we did the gigs, that closed the chapter. If there is a new chapter, that will happen in time. People want what we already have given them. This solo tour made me more confident. I'd hate becoming a pastiche of the Libertines.
Reporting by Dominique Vidalon, editing by Paul Casciato