Franz Ferdinand (4 stars)

Grand Ole Opry, Glasgow, Mon 4 Jun


At the first of this intimate, exciting two-night warm-up residency for their continental summer festival dates, Franz Ferdinand served notice of a dramatic change in style to compensate for the rather underwhelming fare which made up most of their second album. They have - wait for it - gone New Rave.

Okay, not entirely. But with Nick McCarthy playing keyboards instead of guitar for most of the five new tracks, there was the definite feeling that they’ve been listening to a lot of electro and house recently. ‘English Goodbye’ was one case in point, although its rather elegantly-told tale of modern romance was not as suited to the dancefloor as ‘Favourite Lie’, a poignant guitar epic which breaks down into a massive euro-house outro, and the monumental electro-funk of the brilliant ‘Turn It On’.

The other two new tracks played, ‘Anyone in Love’ and ‘A New Thrill’, sat more comfortably alongside jerky-guitar Franz classics like ‘Take Me Out’ and ‘Michael’, and the very fact that all of the new songs managed to hold their own in the company of such acknowledged classics should mean that the third album will be reason to get excited.

(David Pollock)

Franz Ferdinand

The all-conquering, foot-stomping, guitar-jangling quintet tour new album Always Ascending.

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