Thankfully 'You Could Have It So Much Better' isn't simply a re-tread of their debut...
Jack Smith 2004-02-05
Franz Ferdinand's Mercury-winning debut probably graced just as many coffee-tables as indie sound-systems in 2004, thanks to the universal hype. But thankfully You Could Have It So Much Better isn't simply a re-tread of their debut. It's a more dynamic and more rewarding listen that sees band leaning less heavily on their gaunt 'n' groovy rhythm section. In fact, on "Eleanor Put Your Boots On" and"Fade Together", the bass and drums resign entirely, making way for two wistful piano ballads.
Alex Kapranos' observations are more playful here than before, but his delivery remains as sharp as ever. "Who gives a damn about the profits at Tesco?" he asks on ballsy opener, "The Fallen". He's clearly revelling in new his role as today's Jarvis Cocker. Heck, the "laa-la-la-la-la-laa" refrain in "Well That Was Easy" is nabbed directly from Pulp's "Monday Morning".
Had they stuck to their infamous 'music to make girls dance' ethos here, the Franz formula would have worn thin very quickly. Instead, it's been fleshed out. There is more to life than punk-funk after all.