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Last Updated: Thursday, 15 April, 2004, 10:45 GMT 11:45 UK
Franz boys causing a frenzy
By Alison Dunkerley
BBC News Online Scotland

Alex Kapranos
Lead singer Alex Kapranos dances like a robot
When Franz Ferdinand started out, their aim was to write songs for girls to dance to. Well, they did that all right and they managed to get boys on board too.

A lucky few (less than 1,000) were treated to a show at Glasgow's Queen Margaret Union this week - a show which was rife with energy, enthusiasm, passion and sweat - lots of sweat.

The foursome, who met at Glasgow Art School, were clearly in their element on home turf.

The crowd roared with delight when, after a few songs, lead singer Alex Kapranos announced: "It's good to be home."

Apart from that, the frontman said little else all night, but then he didn't need to, his singing and dancing were more than enough for the crowd.

Named after the archduke of Austria whose assassination is said to have sparked WWI, the Franz boys have shot to fame in what feels like a matter of minutes.

Six months ago they were unknown. That's hard to believe when you see them live.

Cool geek

Even before the boys came on stage, the crowd were in dance mode thanks to support band Fiery Furnaces from Chicago - who could probably get a sell-out gig of their own at the QMU.

They were the perfect warm-up for Franz - loud drums, funky organ, a brother and sister (plus another talented twosome) who clearly impressed the punters.

Frequently compared to the White Stripes, this band is tipped for big things.

When Franz Ferdinand came on stage the place predictably erupted and there was one almighty surge as girls screamed for Kapranos - whose 'square' image actually comes across as cool.

At times he dances like a robot in a Kraftwerk-type fashion and at other times he sidesteps like a 12-year-old at a school disco. Yet still he manages to pull off the cool thing.

The flying sweat, hair pulling, pushing and stamping of the mosh pit is never pleasant, but whatever pain the fans were feeling, it didn't seem to matter.

Franz Ferdinand
Few people had heard of the band six months ago
Take Me Out was the catapult that sent the band hurtling into the world of fame.

The song came a little too early in the evening for some but it was an incredible performance and it showed how much of a frenzy this band has created.

With an album less than 40 minutes long it was interesting to see if their set would be of equal length.

But they played most, if not all, of their self-titled album, which was released in February on the Domino label and they also played some new material which seemed to get the fans' approval just as much as the more well known tracks.

Darts of Pleasure, Matinee, Jacqueline, Michael, Take Me Out - they are the stand-out tracks on the album and inevitably the stand-out tracks live.

The set was a hit and the Franz boys knew it.

They saved one of the favourites, Michael, until near the end of the set.

It's about a boy with leather hips and sticky hair. Kapranos sings: "I'm all that you see, you wanna see, so come and dance with me Michael."

If Michael knows what's good for him, he'll do what he's told and start dancing. And never stop.


SEE ALSO:
Sound of 2004: Franz Ferdinand
08 Jan 04  |  Entertainment
Impressive chart debut for Franz
18 Jan 04  |  Entertainment


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