By Staff on June 29, 2012
2012 marks FILTER Magazine’s tenth year in print. To celebrate, we are looking back at some of our favorite magazine features, from July 2002’s Issue #1 all the way up to this coming November’s Issue #50.
Below you will find Issue #17’s cover story, in full, where we dissected the mostly-Scottish lads of Franz Ferdinand, from their outrageous childhood memories to their outsider-dom to what they’re doing differently in their sophomore album.
Who Shot Franz Ferdinand? (Issue 17, Fall 2005)
By Mikel Jollett
Direction from Franz Ferdinand
Photography by Steven Dewall and Franz Ferdinand
What’s wrong with a little destruction?
“How does one achieve eternal bliss? By saying dada. How does one become famous? By saying dada. With a noble gesture and delicate propriety. Till one goes crazy. Till one loses consciousness. How can one get rid of everything that smacks of journalism, worms, everything nice and right, blinkered, moralistic, europeanised, enervated? By saying dada.”
- Hugo Ball, Dada Manifesto, Zurich, 1916
I HAVE NO IDEA HOW WE GET INTO SUCH THINGS. Where were we and exactly what was the idea again? Oh yeah, the thin man on the couch, the one in the striped red shirt, bouncing up and down, speaking so fast, as if caught amidst a foot-race between his mind and his mouth, each struggling to out-pace the other. His name is Alex Kapranos. He has an idea.
“What if the entire article is a series of Venn diagrams? I don’t think there are enough Venn diagrams in the world. I remember learning them in math class and I quite enjoyed them.” He laughs. Paul, Nick, and Bob laugh too. I wonder briefly if it was such a good idea that we allow Franz Ferdinand to come up with the concept of their own article. It smacks of laziness.
But then they’re good at this sort of thing and anyway, how many times can you read that they played their first gigs at an abandoned mansion during art expositions? That Alex Kapranos once volunteered to search for landmines in Kosovo? That the idea behind their first record was to make “music for girls to dance to?” That Paul switched from guitar to drums on the condition that the drum kit not block the audience from seeing his face? That they’re Scottish (but not exclusively), stylish (but not pretentious), smart (but not elitist)… ad infinitum.
Next door, an engineer is mixing synth sounds for the new record (You Could Have It So Much Better… with Franz Ferdinand) so our chat is punctuated by an electric pulse, a sound which approximates a door opening on a spaceship.
There’s Bob Hardy (the cherubic bass player) reclining on the couch with his arms crossed over his chest. There’s Nick McCarthy (polite, guitarist) sitting on the chair with a hangover. There’s Paul Thomson (springy, jocular, drums) leaning forward on his feet, crouched in the chair next to Nick.
A sense of mischief hangs in the air (a permanent one, I think, for these guys) as eyes move from face to face wondering if the concept can work.
“You can do so much with Venn diagrams,” Alex offers.