Bertrand Cantat (born in Pau, France, March 5th 1964) is a French singer and songwriter. He is the leader of the rock band Noir Désir. He served a prison sentence and was released in October 2007.Together with Pascal Humbert he founded the band Détroit in 2012.
At the helm of Noir Désir, he became one of the most prominent figures of French music in the 90s. His left leaning political views saw him take position against globalisation, desertification of urban areas in Bordeaux and the 2003 invasion of Iraq.
In July 2003, while rowing with his girlfriend Marie Trintignant in a hotel apartment in Vilnius, Lithuania, he punched her repeatedly, which resulted in her falling into a coma and eventually dying few days later.
This death caused considerable emotion in France. Nadine Trintignant, Marie's mother, actively sought a heavy sentence; Cantat's friends claimed he had been out of his mind and had not intended to cause harm.
He was sentenced in March of 2004 to 8 years in prison for murder committed with indirect intent. The verdict was at first appealed by Marie's family, then by Bertrand Cantat, but both parties ultimately decided to cancel their appeals, which rendered the first 8 years judgment final.
At the request of his lawyers, Cantat was moved from a Lithuanian prison to a prison near Muret, France on September 28, 2004.His house in Landes was burned down on September 11, 2003. Many suspect this was related to the death of Marie Trintignant.
Cantat has been released early due to good behaviour at october 16th 2007, and immediatly retreated to his house near Bordeaux, not leaving any time for interviews about his musical future. In 2013 Détroit released their debut album Horizons, followed by a live album in 2014.
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