Tonight: Franz Ferdinand

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19 Ene 2009, 0:50

Oh so long awaited, one of my favorite artists have released their third album this month. Just going to list a run through of what I feel about each song, jotting down some thoughts. Overall, I feel that nothing to match the genius-ness of their self-titled debut (they set the bar really high on that one), but if I had to rank them it would be their first, second, then this album as last.

This doesn't mean that it's a bad album, it's still very solid (unlike oh, Keane Perfect Symmetry, Coldplay Viva la Vida or Death and All His Friends, and then there's the indifferent Kaiser Chiefs Off with Their Heads and a really different sound coming from The Killers Day & Age.). All of these artists have unbeatable debuts, but with the exception of Coldplay and The Killers, their second albums began a slippery slope.

I think 2008 despite the number of albums that came out from existing artists were all very blah, which made it a great year for those emerging artists as well. The only albums I can come up with that were exceptionally great were Calexico Carried To Dust and Hot Chip Made in the Dark. Others that probably should have not received the hype are Oasis Dig Out Your Soul, Weezer Weezer (Red Album)... hmmm, there are more but they only have like 1-2 notable songs tops in their newest. Stay in the 90s, let people remember you for your great songs, you know, like Neil Young says, "It's better to burn out, than to fade away." Kind of like how the Beatles are remembered far better for their 10 year run rather than the Stones 150 year run, which anyway, the Stones best songs were in their early days.

ANYWAY, way off topic, let's just return to Franz Ferdinand. Can I say, turn up that bass groove? Up that distorted synth? It's all a very different sound to this indie rock roots band that emerged with very perfect songs like Take Me Out, The Dark of the Matinee, Michael, This Fire, etc. It seems like they replaced their fantastic guitar riffs with subpar synth runs, something they're not known for unlike the Killers or Kaiser Chiefs. Sadly, this album was a little disappointing, kind of like hearing your favorite band switch gears due to a formula that they started being copied so heavily by other bands that others are starting to feel that they are old. It's kind of sad actually. Few tracks stand out, and the ones that do aren't as good as the average track from their debut.

1. Ulysses: Very nice dance beat, catchy as hell, massive sounds coming around from everywhere. Sexy as fuck. "La, la la la la, ULYSSES!"

2. Turn It On: Good second song, danceable too. "You turn it on..."

3. No You Girls: Another dance-y song, the hand claps, the Outsiders like bouncy guitars... at this point you see the formula they're using and so far I didn't like it.

4. Twilight Omens: Finally a song that is as fucking catchy as Ulysses. With clever clever lyrics that are reminiscent of their debut album. "I wrote your name upon the back of my hand / Slept upon it, then I woke up with it backwards on my face / Reading forwards from my mirror to my heart" and "I typed your number into my calculator / Where it spelled a dirty word when I turned it upside down / You can turn my dirty world the right way around"

5. Send Him Away: It's different than the usual Franz Ferdinand, switching tempos like Well That Was Easy but worse.

6. Live Alone: Another catchy chorus that demands singing it out loud if you happen to be lucky enough to see them live these days. Sigh. I will one day!!

7. Bite Hard: Slow beginning growing into something infectious - or so you hope.

8. What She Came For: The chorus fails to deliver, wish it did. You can see that after Bite Hard and this track that the jamming out ends set you up for Lucid Dreams.

9. Can't Stop Feeling: Kind of overdone synth, kind of like that "I like to move it move it" song that makes you want to punch yourself in the stomach. Except not that bad.

10. Lucid Dreams: Decent song, it could be less beat heavy. The saving grace is the latter half where literally the band is going overkill and experimental. It would be worth it if Franz Ferdinand's new direction was like Radiohead as opposed to this reggae thing they were doing for the last half hour of the album. You can almost close your eyes and feel yourself in a dance club just feeling high off the last two minutes of the song. It's actually quite awesome. It's just so in and out, choppy yet put together.

11. Dream Again: Finally this roaring album is coming to a close, but not quite like 40' or Come On Home takes it.

12. Katherine Kiss Me: Similar to the acoustic of Eleanor Put Your Boots On. A soothing, good close. The off-tune piano is a good touch (I'm a sucker for slightly off-tune pianos at times, gives a timeless feel to the song).

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