Ferdinand | Franz Ferdinand
a ryan j. mack review
happened to be in Scotland in January, and in a music store- -
pretty close to heaven for me. The Glasgow music scene has to
be one of the best in the world. It's a city just churning out
bands nothing like each other except that they're all totally
unique and totally incredible- - Belle and Sebastian, Mogwai,
The Delgados, The Songs and Daughters, The Sluts of Trust...
So I had been poking around used CD stores in search of something
I couldn't get in America at all (or yet). And there it was! A
single for Franz Ferdinand's 'Take Me Out.'
Now, at this point the dollar was dropping to about two dollars
to one pound, and on the backpacker budget, I could only think
about how I was going to be paying for cups of tea for the next
three years. Oh, what's a girl to do?
She buys music and skips breakfast. Obviously.
Not to worry. It was only two pounds. If it was terrible- - only
three songs and four dollars. I wasn't hungry anyway. But it wasn't
terrible. It was the opposite of terrible. It was also the day
before I left, and the full disc wasn't out in domestic release
in the US yet, and three songs just wasn't enough. As it turns
out, when I bought it two months later in the US after its domestic
release here, the whole CD is never enough.
Even under the intense pressure of a pre-release media fanfare,
Franz Ferdinand has stood up. They are the next big British thing.
Not one but three successful singles in the UK and USA- - Take
Me Out, Matinee, and Darts of Pleasure- - prove they're not just
a single sensation. Hell, you can even see them on MTV. Briefly.
They're hot and they're talented. That's one sexily dangerous
EVERY track is good. They're smolder with the ability to draw
you out and build you up, till they just explode. It starts with
Jacqueline, quiet lyrics over near acoustic music. Then- - there
it is. Like a shotgun of anthematic proportion. Track three is
the first single, Take Me Out, which does the opposite- - starting
out huge and slowing in the middle. By this point you're heart
is pumping to the beat of the music- - a perfect time for the
near marching The Dark of the Matinee. Okay, there are a lot of
tracks on this album, (and, lest you think I'm overly gushy, Tell
Her Tonight might be slightly sup-par, and Cheating on You is
repetitive internally and musically in the album as a whole).
Other highlights include the lusty Michael and the standout, arguably
best track- - Darts of Pleasure. (FYI: The German at the end?
Ich heisse super fantastiche/Ich trinke champers mit lachsfisch?
Translation: I am called super fantastic/I drink champers with
They also have a preternaturally powerful tour right now that
is even better than the record. They're not messing around.
I can't wait for them to do more. Franz Ferdinand takes the sappy
radio-conforming ironic emo schmaltz out of rock and makes it
pulse-poundingly speaker-blastingly hot. Remember rock? Because
they do and you will. Just listen: "This fire is out of control/I'm
going to burn this city/burn this city/If this fire is out of
control/then I/ I'm out of control/And I burn."
So do I.
So will you.
Thank you, Glasgow