posted on March 03, 2009 05:32
Franz Ferdinand (live in Dolan's Warehouse, Limerick)
Review Snapshot: 400 lucky ducks witness Franz Ferdinand 'warm up' for their '09 tour with considerable aplomb. Watch out Europe.
The Cluas Verdict? 8 out of 10
The anticipation amongst the lucky 400 in Dolan’s Warehouse ahead of this ‘warm-up’ gig was that the Glaswegian art-rockers would use this chance to rehearse material from their new Tonight album with one eye on their upcoming European tour. Not so. They played what seemed like every memorable moment from their already-classic debut album, kicking off the setlist with a stomping rendition of ‘Come On Home’. Alex Kapranos made sure he reminded the crowd where they were with frequent ‘Thank you Limerick’s between songs, but whether he was aware the Terry Wogan namedropped in ‘Dark of the Matinee’ is himself a Limerickman was unclear. However a spontaneous crowdsurf at the end of the gig did ensure Kapranos left Shannonside with an intimate knowledge of the city Wogan left behind!
Kapranos’ authentic vocal talent was a constant but what also impressed was his frenetic double-jobbing as lead guitarist, especially during ‘Do You Want To’. A banging ‘Take Me Out’ was played surprisingly early in the set, followed by a string of new songs (DISCLAIMER: I haven’t heard the new album yet. For shame.) Recent single Ulysses was warmly received by the crowd - a welcome endorsement for FF in these days of Kings Of Leon daytime-radio overkill. The encore comprised a subtle-then-manic delivery of their best-ever song Jacqueline, a surprisingly tasteful 4-man assault on the drumkit at the end of another newbie, and regular curtain-closer ‘Burn This City’.
Lasting Impact: The bulk of the tiny crowd remained subdued throughout – even for Take Me Out – which annoyed this reviewer given the rarity of gigs like this and the energy FF put in to their performance. In fairness, it was stadium-rock in a room the size of a small community hall - what more reason do you need to rock out? As for Franz themselves, here was a band that cared more about playing their favourite songs rather than pushing their new record, and the enjoyment of such was clear to see on their faces at the end of the gig. Having seen them play in Lansdowne Road 4 years ago, its great to think they still give me the same buzz. It was a privilege to be there. Keep the big guns coming, Dolans.