Franz Ferdinand @ Camden Roundhouse
On Friday night I was transported back into the world of my fourteen year old self thanks to the effortless brilliance of Franz Ferdinand. After arriving fashionably late at the Roundhouse, thanks to over-confidence and under-awareness in the tube system, there was just enough time to get a couple of quick pints in before heading into the darkness; awaiting the burst of indie brilliance that every crowd member knew was destined to happen.
So when the lights dimmed and the drums kicked in the expectation and anticipation from the crowd turned into genuine delight. What every fan these days wants to see when they see a band live is a set made up of the tunes that they know, classic tracks mean much more to the current generation of I want, I want compared to the forward movement of the band with new material. Franz Ferdinand were wise with their choice to only perform the already released singles from their latest album whilst pleasing the crowd with a selection of tracks predominantly from their first two albums. From my perspective, I was simply pleased that my constant calls for them to play Jacqueline were answered as part of the inevitable encore. Seriously, the sacredness and importance of an encore has now been so damaged that its probably rarer that a band doesnt come back out for a second spell. What a wonderful ego boost…
Anyway, the band; brilliant. There was something really enjoyable about seeing just the four band members on stage without any real faffing around, using a keyboard occasionally was the height of any breaks from their double guitar, bass and drums set-up. It was almost the same as going to a mates gig, a mate in a surprisingly good band, as there was nothing to distance the audience from the band. The simplicity worked entirely to the bands advantage and it allowed them to get on with playing and keeping the focus on the music.
Though they arent really a band full of swagger, confidence perpetually shines through from all four band members and theyre clearly a tightly-knit group who rarely, if ever, miss a beat. Song after song passed and the mood of the crowd never dampened, despite noticeably more people taking trips to the bar during some of the less well-known tracks.
Franz Ferdinand may have had their day of being at the forefront of indie music but theyre still providing their fans with top quality content and, if all their live performances are like this, theyll surely be selling out shows for a long time to come.