Franz Ferdinand's top culture tips



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Glasgow-formed art rockers Franz Ferdinand gives Time Out their hot cultural tips ahead of the release of their hot new genre-defying album 'Tonight: Franz Ferdinand'

  • Franz Ferdinand's top culture tips

    Artist Mark Leckey © Mark Blower

  • Download a track from Franz Ferdinand's forthcoming album ‘Tonight: Franz Ferdinand’.

    Bob Hardy on… comedian Todd Barry
    ‘He’s a really dry New Yorker. He used to be a drummer, actually, so he’s always talking about music and bands. He’s got a joke about Wilco. It goes, “Do you have the new Wilco album? No? I don’t either. But ask me if the new Wilco album is any good” – audience member asks the question – “[sighs] Oh my God! That’s my I-have-an-unhealthy-attachment-to-music gasp.” He tells loads of jokes about bands.’

    Todd Barry ‘I’d heard through other people that Franz Ferdinand were fans, but they haven’t had the balls to tell me. What are they afraid of? I occasionally hear from bands that listen to me and that’s really cool. I find that musicians are generally funny people and don’t take themselves too seriously, although I’m sure you can name a million exceptions.

    ‘I’m not sure why I’ve written so many jokes about music; I guess it’s one of those bottomless pits of material. I did used to be a drummer. I still play occasionally. The last time was a few weeks ago, when I opened for Yo La Tengo. I also play in a Billy Joel tribute band called A Matter of Trust.’

    ‘I’m more into writing food jokes now. Do you know any famous chefs who listen to me? I’d like to go to their restaurant and have a complimentary dessert sent to my table.’
    and on curry houses‘I lived in Glasgow – and I come from Bradford – and there’s an amazing curry house there called Mother India.’ Where have you tried in London? ‘Rasa in Stoke Newington. I really like that. I like The Red Fort in Soho. That’s the thing about Mother India, it’s really authentic.’
    Guy Dimond, Time Out Food & Drink editor says: ‘You would probably like Imli in Soho; Moti Mahal in Covent Garden; Chutney Mary in Chelsea; or hip chain Masala Zone, which is great value.’

    Alex Kapranos on… Fine art/sound‘There’s a lot of fuss made about musicians who went to art school but very little said about proper artists who make music and there are quite a few of them: Martin Creed, Mark Leckey, Chris Cunningham, David Shrigley. There are usually no commercial restraints on the music they make, so often it’s more interesting, less conventional, but also less appealing to a mainstream audience, but I like that attitude.’

    Martin Creed, artist and musician, winner of the 2001 Turner Prize: ‘I think the creative impulse for art and music is basically the same. Music is just a form of tidied-up noise. Music is just as important to me as art. Some of the songs I’ve done are some of my best works.’

    New_05 FF Vodoun_crop.jpg
    Orchestre Polyrhythmo

    Paul Thomson on…
    Analog Africa
    ‘It’s these guys in Frankfurt who DJ and run a label. The last couple of releases have been this band from Benin called Orchestre Polyrhythmo. They’re still making music but they’ve recorded more than a hundred records since the late ’60s and they’ve touched many genres. They put out a compilation by a band called Green Arrows who were making music in the ’70s and ’80s. It’s like a beat combo almost, but sort of major key and joyous. The liner notes have these posters including one of Green Arrows playing Zimbabwe with Orange Juice. I love all those curio labels: Cherrystones, Andy Votel, people like that.’

    Samy Ben Redjeb, owner of Analog Africa: ‘I started DJing in ’95 in a club in Senegal, doing house and disco. Then I came up with the idea to do an African evening and the owner of the place just gave me some cash, so I went to Dakar and started buying records. I kept finding interesting Zimbabwean music so I quit my job and went to Zimbabwe and started digging for records there. That’s what I’m doing now in Togo – collecting music. Six months of the year I’m in Africa.

    ‘I buy ’60s and ’70s stuff. In the early ’80s they started experimenting with synthesizers. Then Congolese soukous became so big that every country started doing soukous.

    ‘I can’t really say what my favourite is; I’ve put the same amount of effort into every compilation. I wouldn’t release it if I didn’t love it.’

    Nick McCarthy on…
    Robo dancing‘I did a weird dance course once. It was like a jive course in the south side of Glasgow. There are a couple of moves from that course I use when I go out dancing. You can twist a girl round; I could never do that before. I use this one trick alone and it works a treat. We kind of write music to dance to, you know? And I really like going out and it’s great if someone can do some moves. I’d love to learn robot dance, yeah. There’s some amazing footage of a robot dancer that I found on YouTube ( It’s total morphing.’

    Nick’s Picks:
    Jive (; Moonwalking (; Japanese Rockabilly (

    Paul Thomson and Bob Hardy on… comic strip artist Joe Matt Paul ‘He does underground comics and I guess there’s quite a strong Robert Crumb influence – you know, Robert Crumb was always talking about sexual perversions. I just read this comic book and it’s about a guy who’s a serial masturbator. He’s just talking about his unhealthy obsession. There’s, like, these five pages where he borrows all this porn from his friend and he’s got two video recorders and he’s like, “Yeah, yeah, I like that shot… Oh my God, I just saw that guy’s hairy ass. Rewind, rewind. Pause, record, got to dub that bit out at zero point three eight seconds.” It goes on; him trying to edit this porn.’

    ‘In his earlier comics he’s like this dysfunctional man in his early twenties or something, just kind of funny. But the older he gets he’s, like, my life’s dirty and bitter, this is my life.’

    Download a track from Franz Ferdinand's forthcoming album ‘Tonight: Franz Ferdinand’, out this week.

    Read our interview with the band.

    Win exclusive FF signed albums and gig tickets in our competition.

    The band play Hammersmith Apollo on Mar 9.

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