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Last Updated: Wednesday, 8 September, 2004, 00:03 GMT 01:03 UK
Franz hail victory of 'real rock'
By Ian Youngs
BBC News Online entertainment staff

Franz Ferdinand
Franz Ferdinand said they were part of a "very strong music scene"
Franz Ferdinand have said their success in the Mercury Music Prize represents a resurgence of "real" rock music over "despicable" reality pop.

"What this signifies... is an end to this despicable era we've gone through of manufactured pop music," singer Alex Kapranos said after their win.

Franz Ferdinand's self-titled debut album won the prestigious prize for UK or Irish album of the year on Tuesday.

"We've had enough of Pop Idols, we've had enough of Fame Academy," he said.

Great bands were always made up of "ordinary guys from anywhere" writing music on their own terms, Kapranos added.

Franz Ferdinand
The band are currently working on their second album
He said Franz Ferdinand and the other nominees were part of a "very strong music scene" in the UK.

"I think we're going through a really positive time - not only through the people that are making music, but people wanting to listen to music," he said.

"They're excited about real bands, real musicians, writing it for themselves."

Franz Ferdinand, the first rock act to win the Mercury for three years, were in a state of stunned euphoria when presented to the media after their victory.

They were virtual unknowns a year ago and have risen to become the UK's most successful new rock band, selling two million copies of their first album around the world.

We've got to sound better than the first time around, otherwise there's no point doing another one
Alex Kapranos on Franz Ferdinand's second album
Kapranos told BBC News Online they felt "a hell of a lot of pressure" to deliver on their next release.

"But that pressure started when we finished the first album because the pressure comes from yourself," he said.

"You've got to meet your own standards and the standards we impose on ourselves are the highest.

"We've got to satisfy ourselves more than we did the first time around - we've got to sound better than the first time around, otherwise there's no point doing another one."

Of the next album, he said: "It feels there's a lot more depth to the new stuff that we're doing, but it's still hopefully as immediate."

Kapranos said all his favourite bands evolved with their second album - and they planned to do the same.

Scottish scene

When asked who his favourite bands were, the first name off Kapranos' lips was Roxy Music - and Franz Ferdinand did not stop talking about meeting Brian Eno earlier in the evening.

In fact, that meeting seemed to rival the Mercury result as their highlight of the night.

Glasgow is currently at the forefront of the UK's music scene, with Franz Ferdinand and fellow nominees Snow Patrol and Belle and Sebastian based in the city.

When we first got the band together, we were hoping to sell 500 singles
Alex Kapranos
"I think the Glasgow music scene's always been fantastic - it seems nowadays that people have caught up with the fact," Kapranos said. "And it's getting better all the time."

He wants to use the 20,000 prize money to establish a centre to help young people in the city play music, he said.

"I think it would be good to continue the fantastic music scene up there."

It is all a far cry from their beginnings, when they put on underground gigs at a disused warehouse and an old courtroom in the city.

"When we first got the band together, we were hoping to sell 500 singles, and if we did that, we'd maybe do another one," Kapranos said.

It is safe to say they have exceeded their expectations - but, like previous Mercury victors, must now prove they can build on their success.


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