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Wednesday, September 21, 2005

Review: Franz Ferdinand - Franz Ferdinand

To paraphrase and sanitize my favorite line from Street Trash (new on DVD but wait for the special edition), "I follow popular culture like old people make love". I don't watch TV, listen to the radio or read music mags. I pick things up mostly from Entertainment Weekly and allmusic.com. For a while I thought Franz Ferdinand were the leaders, if not founders, of the latest new wave revival. They're neither. Their single "Take Me Out" may be the best known in the genre but it's gimmicky and campy. The Futureheads, Interpol, Bloc Party and Maximo Park are so much better. Only about half of their debut disc is worthwhile.

While I enjoy their Joy Division, Wire, New Order and Gang Of Four influences, they also play campy glam and the disco Rod Stewart scorched the earth with in 1978 when he warbled "Do Ya Think I'm Sexy?" Literally, that song, referenced more than once. The good songs are "Jacqueline", "The Dark Of The Matinee", "Cheating On You", "This Fire" and "Michael" (even sung like Sisters Of Mercy) and "40'".

I hate disco. What can I say. White people shouldn't try to shake their groove things, which we don't have anyway. We just have asses. And while I like many old glam songs there's a style of it that makes me wince like a football to the groi-oi-oin. Picture overly happy people clapping in rhythm while a marching band drum major high steps and waves that stupid staff left and right and up and down (no offense to the dude with the Eraserhead hairstyle). That's the glam FF goes for, and if this makes them the most popular band in the genre then once again I'm too cool for school.


Blogger Robert G. said...

You are wise, o wise one.

I've heard FF's particular style referred to as "death disco" by a few people. I still don't have a friggin' clue what that means.

6:46 PM

Blogger Emerson said...

"Death Disco" was s ong by PIL. I also thought of Big Black as being a bit death disco, especially "Kerosene".

11:36 AM

Blogger Robert G. said...

I know, I've just never really understood the label. If you're going to include everything with a disco-ish beat that's loud, that's a pretty broad brush stroke.

11:44 AM


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