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LITERATURE

 » Full Dark, No Stars - Stephen King's new novella questions mankind's ability to trust others.
[02.21.2011 by Bridget Doyle]

MUSIC

 » The Top 30 Albums of 2010 - Fashionably, fabulously late, our favorite music (and believe me, there was a LOT) of 2010, the year that some have called the best year for music ever. And only some of those fools work here. Plenty of usual suspects, lots of ties and a few surprises that I won't spoil, including our unexpected #1.
[12.24.2010 by The LAS Staff]

MUSIC

 » Live: Surfer Blood/The Drums at Lincoln Hall, Chicago, IL - Remember when Weezer used to put together records that you could sing along to and rock out to? That's what Surfer Blood's show was like!
[11.04.2010 by Cory Tendering]

Music Reviews

Screaming Females - Castle Talk
»Screaming Females
Castle Talk
Don Giovanni
Trent Reznor & Atticus Ross - The Social Network [Original Soundtrack]
»Trent Reznor & Atticus Ross
The Social Network [Original Soundtrack]
The Null Corporation
Deerhunter - Halcyon Digest
»Deerhunter
Halcyon Digest
4AD
No Age - Everything in Between
»No Age
Everything in Between
Sub Pop
Robyn - Body Talk Pt. 1/ Body Talk Pt. 2
»Robyn
Body Talk Pt. 1/ Body Talk Pt. 2
Konichiwa
The Walkmen - Lisbon
»The Walkmen
Lisbon
Fat Possum
Franz Ferdinand
Franz Ferdinand
Domino

Rating: 8.5/10 ?


October 1, 2004
If the opening seconds of Franz Ferdinand's self-titled debut are an introduction to the band's sound, one may immediately think, "Oh, no, it's another fuckin' album from Scotland to listen to while I cry into my beer. Next, he's going to be telling me 'how to be dead' like in that shitty Snow Patrol song."

Don't worry. There will be no crying following those first 45 seconds, only bopping around to one of the most guiltless rock 'n' roll pleasures of the year, for no one is too cool to give in to the hype, not even this curmudgeon of a writer.

The only legitimate complaint I have against Franz Ferdinand is that turning this record up to an appropriate listening level is impossible. I've tried, but my speakers start to crackle. In a more extreme attempt, my father nearly blew out the amp in his stereo after turning this record up too loud in our basement [Rock 'n' roll trivia answer #98662: when you turn something up too loud through your receiver, rather than blow up, it just mutes automatically].

So if one can't turn the catchier-than-Sleater-Kinney guitar parts up loud enough, or the all-over-the-place bass lines up low enough, or singer Alex Kapranos's even-a-straight-man-finds-him-sexy voice up high enough, then how is one supposed to listen to Franz Ferdinand?

By drinking.

And dancing.

While Franz Ferdinand is a hell of a good time, it is more than a paradise for hedonists. The guitar work is never cliché as it zigzags from part to part, leaving unforgettable hooks along the way, particularly on the opening track, "Jacqueline," and the impossible-to-play-to-death single "Take Me Out."

Coming from the front man of a dance rock band, Kapranos's lyrics provide unanticipated genius at times, as well. Oh's, uh's and yeah's are kept to a minimum. Instead, Kapranos nearly turns the world of popular rock on its ear when he declares, "I'm a loser," and later, "I'm cheating on you," in "Cheating on You."

While his assassination incited a world war against a considerable threat to the well-being of Western civilization, let's hope that the resurrection of Franz Ferdinand may result in people taking a stand against another threat to the well-being of Western civilization - pathetic Scottish pop balladry led by the axis powers of Travis, Snow Patrol, Belle and Sebastian and Teenage Fanclub.

Fuck war in Iraq. Fuck war in Afghanistan. The real terrorists are invading our stereos, and they are from Glasgow, Scotland!

Christ died twice so we could sin again. I'll be damned if I let Franz Ferdinand die twice so I can dance again.

Vive la resitance!

Okay, what album was I reviewing, again?

Reviewed by Brian Sutherland
The last we heard, Brian Sutherland lived in Chicago. He\'s a friend of Sarah Peters. That is about all we know about him.

See other reviews by Brian Sutherland

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