Franz Ferdinand tours their greatest hits

Picture by David Edwards

The post-punk revival band, Franz Ferdinand, visits Salt Lake City with their greatest hits tour, “Hits to the Head.”

Thirty minutes before the show has begun, people already fill The Complex theater, waiting for their beloved band, Franz Ferdinand, to make their entrance.

Franz Ferdinand was part of the post-punk revival in the early 2000s. With their debut, self-titled album, they immediately rose to stardom. In interviews, lead singer, Alex Kapranos, has mentioned that he wanted to bring back the mainstream pop sound to rock that was kicked off by the likes of The Beatles.

Now, twenty years later, they are touring with their most recent album release “Hits to the Head”, which is an album of their greatest hits, featuring eighteen classics alongside two new singles “Billy Goodbye” and “Curious”. This album comes after Paul Thomson’s farewell on the drums, whose position was inherited by Audrey Tait. Alongside Nick McCarthy’s parting and replacement with Dino Bardot in 2017, this leaves only two of the original four still intact. 

The theater slowly began to fill up with all of the stragglers struggling to find parking and making final purchases at the merchandise counter. The excited buzz increased as the stage hands came on to make final preparations and tune the instruments.

Then just as the audience was growing impatient, the band walked on stage to a roar of welcome. It rose to a crescendo with the last arrival, Alex Kapranos, lead singer, guitarist and frontman for the band. 

Each time they played one of their classics, the energy within the crowd would magnify a hundredfold. Kapranos would spur the crowd on by dancing on the stage and encouraging them to do likewise. He has mentioned in numerous interviews how he wants his music to cause people to dance and there is no greater compliment to him than to do so. 

The concert reached its peak when they played their undoubtedly most popular song, “Take Me Out”. It was a monumental moment that allowed audience members to participate in a song that was a huge influence on their lives. It was surreal experiencing the elation that filled the room.

However, there was one problem — a hit song, “This Fire”, hadn’t been played yet. One audience member audibly expressed his disappointment that he wasn’t going to see it. But Franz Ferdinand knew their crowd, and after making a reappearance for an encore, they played three more songs that ended with the beloved song, substituting the words “this city” with “Salt Lake City” and “Utah”.

Even though fans were sad to see the departure of some members of Franz Ferdinand, this was a great opportunity for them to familiarize themselves with Tait who has only been a part of the band a short time. There was a great moment in the concert with all of the band members playing the drums with Tait at the lead as if to present her talents.

Some dislike the changes they have seen from the classic sound they came to love, but it is an undeniable fact that bands evolve over time. Some are excited to see these changes and embrace them full-heartedly. Others, not so much. It’s up to the listener to decide.

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