Hype can be a dangerous game. For every band that releases a hyped 1st record and sustains a successful career afterwards, there are thousands of bands that lit up the music world the 1st time around then disappeared from view. In my opinion some of those bands may have been deservedly relegated to the sidelines, while I scratch my head at some bands that are considered “One Hit Wonders“.
Franz Ferdinand (named for the Austro-Hungarian Archduke whose murder sparked World War I) have had a curious trajectory in both the UK and the US (for the sake of this review, I’ll just mention those two entities though I do realize there is an entire world out there). The 1st self titled record was a hit on both sides of the pond and was a record both in love with the late 70’s post punk scene as well as the modern dance punk hipster revival. Ambiguous lyrics, music that sounded like it mattered – what was not to love? The follow up, You Could Have It So Much Better was another huge hit in the UK but failed to make an impact in the US. The same fate was afforded to the 3rd record, Tonight in the United States. In fact, 8 years on from the debut record I wonder if today’s early 20’s hipsters are even aware of Franz Ferdinand?