It took Scottish modern rockers Franz Ferdinand three-and-a-half years to put out its latest album, “Tonight: Franz Ferdinand.”
Its next comes in less than six months.
On June 2, the quartet releases “Blood,” a dub version of “Tonight” that was mixed by Dan Carey, who’s produced albums by Lee “Scratch” Perry and Mad Professor, both masters of the reggae music sub-genre. It’s an unusual move, but Franz frontman Alex Kapranos says he hopes it’s one of many the group makes throughout its career.
“All along as a band, we felt it’s important to do things on our own terms and nobody else’s terms,” Kapranos, 37, explains. “We always did things in our own way. We write our own songs, we arrange our own songs, we perform in the way we want to perform.
“We don’t have anybody who’s telling us what to do, and that’s what’s wrong with the majority of pop music nowadays.”
“Blood” has been around since “Tonight” came out in January, as a bonus with special limited edition copies of the album. The group also released 500 vinyl copies of “Blood” as part of Record Store Day on April 18, but the June release will be its first appearance on the mass market.
Kapranos calls the dub versions of the songs his favorite way of listening to the “Tonight” tracks and said when announcing the release that “what you’re hearing is Franz Ferdinand through (Carey’s) filter. There’s a lot of his personality in there and a lot of his own experimentation too.” He added in Billboard that Carey is “coming from that Jamaican perspective — there’s much more space. The bass guitar leads a lot more on this record than anything else.”
Kapranos and company are hoping “Blood” will put a bit of fresh juice behind “Tonight,” which has lagged behind its two predecessors. “Franz Ferdinand” went platinum in the U.S. in 2004, while “You Could Have It So Much Better” went gold the following year. The album’s even stumbled a bit in the U.K., where its two singles have failed to crack the Top 20.
Franz Ferdinand and Born Ruffians perform Sunday (May 3) at Clutch Cargo’s, 65 E. Huron St., Pontiac. Doors open at 7 p.m. Tickets are $25. Call (248) 333-2362 or visit www.clutchcargos.com.
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