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ACL Aftershow Review at Emos: Franz Ferdinand, Smith Westerns, and Frankie Rose


“Dark of the Matinee” – Franz Ferdinand

Originally posted at the Horn Publication.

As the deluge began outside that would ultimately cancel Sunday’s outdoor festivities, three of Indie rock’s most exciting bands took the stage indoors at Emo’s, each giving a memorable performance leading up to Franz Ferdinand’s dance-fueled finale.

Frankie Rose, a Brooklyn garage-rock veteran, plays a unique style of Indie rock that blends “shoegaze” with Frankie’s laissez-faire charms. Frankie offers flowered, pop-filled songs with a catchy undercurrent of urgency and anxiousness that keeps listeners on edge. As the first act of the night, Frankie jumped onstage like a banshee force of nature and woke the tired festival crowd from their stupor by tearing through her bombshell of a set. Although she only played for what seemed like, twenty minutes, Frankie charmed and won over the crowd for the show’s onset.

The Smith Westerns came on after Frankie Rose, playing their indie lovesick teenager anthems with youthful gusto. Unmistakable as brothers, the Omori brothers are young for their success. The band’s lead singer, Cullen, just turned twenty-one and guitarist, Cameron, is twenty-three. Despite their youth, the Chicago-based quartet digs deep on their musical influences. Their songs can oscillate from sounding like the Smashing Pumpkins’ early work to John Lennon’s solo recordings. The Smith Westerns showered the audience with gilded alternative rock, while their hit song, “Weekend,” served as the highlight of the set. Although the band stuck to the same setlist that they played at the festival earlier in the day, which was disappointing considering the intimate setting, they still played a phenomenal set that ended with an epic rendition of “3 A.M. Spiritual.”


Despite the long, hot day at the ACL Festival, the crowd welcomed Franz Ferdinand with deafening roars. Since Franz’s Sunday festival performance would be cancelled, Saturday night would be one of Austin’s only chances to catch the band before they take off on their global tour (NOTE: they ended up playing a pop-up show at INFEST on Sunday night). These veteran Scottish rockers are known for their high-energy shows, and Saturday night’s performance was no exception.


The band erupted with older hits like “Do You Want” and “Tell Her Tonight” while including some new songs off their latest album, Right Thoughts, Right Words, Right Actions. The band surprisingly pulled off a Donna Summer cover, playing “I Feel Love” to an audience that was unabashed about their dance capabilities.
Franz Ferdinand’s music has an almost show tune-esque quality to it in that the melodies are grandiose, the lyrics are descriptive, and the sound is infectious. Franz’s song “Michael” was particularly high energy, but was enhanced even more with, “This Fire,” another hit that followed. These masters of the live music universe deftly ended their set with a three-song encore and a riotous drum solo that melted everybody’s face before they drove home in the rain. -Lee Ackerley
– See more at: http://www.readthehorn.com/photos/84829/franz_ferdinand_at_emos_reviewphotos#sthash.U35i54ey.dpuf



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