Franz Ferdinand has returned after a five-year hiatus with their fourth studio album Always Ascending.
I found the people who were meant to be found by me
Finally, finally, finally I’m here
In my place, so I’m here
Perhaps these lyrics are regarding the Scottish band finding a new guitarist or the creation of the groups new and vividly encapsulated sound. Either way, Franz Ferdinand’s newest album Always Ascending celebrates a new found feeling. This record casts a sense of progression with a new electronic drive, rebirthing from the intense helter-skelter sound that the group has previously captured.
Experimentation and transformation
This record, released on February 9, is one of experimentation and of transformation.
Franz Ferdinand has recreated themselves through the synths and disco beats that lie under some of the catchiest songs of the album. This sound can be heard in songs such as “Feel The Love Go” and “Glimpse of Love.” It’s a refreshing sound, reminding us how excited we should be to have a new Franz Ferdinand album.
While the group explores a new sound with vigor throughout the album, they seem to alternate between their experimental and classic sound. It’s a nice balance of the old and the new. There are still heavily rock driven ballads such as “Paper Cages,” just featuring a little more synth than usually.
Philosophical and political
The lyrics feel more philosophical compared to their previous work, taking a deeper approach. As with many albums these days, Always Ascending features the politically driven and oddly rapped “Huck And Jim.”
Other songs take a darker existentialist view, like “Slow Don’t Kill Me Slow.” The final song of the album is accompanied by low sounds of synth, leaving one with an uncomfortable and different feeling. It leaves the album on an odd note, which is fitting.
Ascending into new territory
Always Ascending is an album of transcending into new territory, which can be an odd and uncomfortable feeling.
The album wasn’t groundbreaking, but if anything, it was transitional in band’s career. After Nick McCarthy departed from the band, Franz Ferdinand took the opportunity to recreate their sound. They ascended into something new, and frankly, it worked pretty well for them.