Always Ascending

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Always Ascending
Franz Ferdinand - Always Ascending album cover art.png
Studio album by
Released 9 February 2018 (2018-02-09)
Recorded 2017
Studio
Genre
Length 39:48
Label Domino
Producer Philippe Zdar
Franz Ferdinand chronology
FFS
(2015)
Always Ascending
(2018)
Singles from Always Ascending
  1. "Always Ascending"
    Released: 25 October 2017
  2. "Feel the Love Go"
    Released: 8 January 2018
  3. "Lazy Boy"
    Released: 25 January 2018
  4. "Glimpse of Love"
    Released: 25 March 2018

Always Ascending is the fifth studio album by Scottish indie rock band Franz Ferdinand. It was released on 9 February 2018 through the Domino Recording Company. It is the band's first non-collaborative album in over four years, following Right Thoughts, Right Words, Right Action (2013). It is also their first album to feature new member Julian Corrie, who joined shortly after the departure of Nick McCarthy. The album received generally positive reviews from critics. It peaked at number three in Scotland and number six in the UK. Four singles were released from the album: "Always Ascending", "Feel the Love Go", "Lazy Boy" and alternative version of "Glimpse of Love".

Background and recording

Following the release of Right Thoughts, Right Words, Right Action, the band's fourth studio album, in August 2013, the band collaborated with American rock band Sparks under the name FFS. They released a self-titled album in July 2015 and briefly toured.[4] In July 2016, it was announced that Nick McCarthy, one of the band's founding members, was taking a break from the band to spend more time with family and focusing on side projects.[5] It was announced in May 2017 that two new members had joined the band; Dino Bardot, former guitarist for Scottish indie rock band 1990s, and music producer Julian Corrie.[6] Corrie joined the band for the recording sessions of the album, while Bardot joined after recording was completed.[7]

The band recorded the album at Motorbass Studios in Paris and RAK Studios in London.[8] They previously used RAK Studios to record FFS in late 2014.[9][10] For Always Ascending, they worked alongside Philippe Zdar, one-half of French synthpop duo Cassius and frequent collaborator with French indie pop band Phoenix, on the album.[8]

Promotion and release

Prior to the announcement of the album, the band shared a short snippet of the title track on social media platforms on 23 October 2017.[11] On 25 October, the band released the title track as the album's lead single. Alongside the release was the reveal of the album's title, artwork, and track listing. They also released dates for a world tour, starting in October 2017 and ending in May 2018.[12][13] A music video for the title track, directed by AB/CD/CD, was released on 4 December.[14] On 8 January 2018, "Feel the Love Go" was premiered on Zane Lowe's radio show on Beats 1. A music video was also released on the same day and made exclusive to the Apple Music service.[15] The video was directed by Diane Martel,[15] who had previously directed the band's music videos for "Do You Want To" and "Evil Eye".[16] On 25 January, "Lazy Boy" was released as a single.[17]

The album was released on physical and digital formats on 9 February 2018 by the Domino Recording Company. It was made available on 12" vinyl, CD, and a limited edition cassette.[18] A bundle was also made available which included a 180 gram blue and white marble-colored vinyl and other special merchandise items, limited to 1,500 copies.[19] The Japanese CD edition of the album was released through Hostess Entertainment and featured the band's non-album single "Demagogue" (2016) as a bonus track.[20]

Critical reception

Professional ratings
Aggregate scores
Source Rating
AnyDecentMusic? 6.7/10[21]
Metacritic 72/100[22]
Review scores
Source Rating
AllMusic 3/5 stars[23]
The A.V. Club B–[24]
The Guardian 3/5 stars[25]
The Independent 3/5 stars[26]
Mojo 4/5 stars[27]
NME 4/5 stars[28]
Pitchfork 6.9/10[29]
Rolling Stone 3.5/5 stars[30]
Slant Magazine 3.5/5 stars[3]
Under the Radar 8/10 stars[31]

Always Ascending received generally positive reviews from critics. On review aggregator site Metacritic, the album holds an average critic score of 72/100, based on 26 reviews.[22] At the online review aggregator Any Decent Music?, the album received an average critic score of 6.7/10, based on 31 reviews.[21]

Track listing

All tracks written by Julian Corrie, Bob Hardy, Alex Kapranos, and Paul Thomson.

Always Ascending[32]
No. Title Length
1. "Always Ascending" 5:21
2. "Lazy Boy" 2:59
3. "Paper Cages" 3:40
4. "Finally" 3:09
5. "The Academy Award" 4:14
6. "Lois Lane" 3:34
7. "Huck and Jim" 3:35
8. "Glimpse of Love" 3:12
9. "Feel the Love Go" 4:46
10. "Slow Don't Kill Me Slow" 5:18
Total length: 39:48

Personnel

All personnel adapted from liner notes.[33]

Charts

Chart (2018) Peak
position
Australian Albums (ARIA)[34] 28
Austrian Albums (Ö3 Austria)[35] 16
Belgian Albums (Ultratop Flanders)[36] 21
Belgian Albums (Ultratop Wallonia)[37] 13
Canadian Albums (Billboard)[38] 31
Dutch Albums (MegaCharts)[39] 19
French Albums (SNEP)[40] 14
German Albums (Offizielle Top 100)[41] 13
Greek Albums (IFPI Greece)[42] 57
Irish Albums (IRMA)[43] 35
Italian Albums (FIMI)[44] 31
Japanese Albums (Oricon)[45] 26
New Zealand Heatseeker Albums (RMNZ)[46] 2
Portuguese Albums (AFP)[47] 14
Scottish Albums (OCC)[48] 3
Spanish Albums (PROMUSICAE)[49] 20
Swiss Albums (Schweizer Hitparade)[50] 5
UK Albums (OCC)[51] 6
UK Independent Albums (OCC)[52] 2
US Billboard 200[53] 59
US Independent Albums (Billboard)[54] 1
US Top Alternative Albums (Billboard)[55] 5
US Top Rock Albums (Billboard)[56] 5

Release history

Region Date Format Label Catalog no. Ref.
Various 9 February 2018 CD Domino WIGCD408 [57]
12" vinyl WIGLP408 [58]
12" vinyl (deluxe edition) WIGLP408X
12" vinyl (bundle edition) WIGLP408XXMT [19]
Cassette WIGMC408 [59]
WIG408D [60]
Japan CD Hostess HSE-1290 [20]

References

  1. ^ Innes, Corrie (5 February 2018). "Franz Ferdinand – Always Ascending". The Skinny. Retrieved 8 February 2018.
  2. ^ Pollock, David (2 February 2018). "Franz Ferdinand get set for fifth album release and UK tour". The List. Retrieved 8 February 2018.
  3. ^ a b Goller, Josh (5 February 2018). "Franz Ferdinand: Always Ascending". Slant. Retrieved 8 February 2018.
  4. ^ Beauchemin, Molly (1 April 2015). "Franz Ferdinand and Sparks Announce Self-Titled Album as FFS". Pitchfork. Retrieved 25 October 2017.
  5. ^ Monroe, Jazz (8 July 2016). "Franz Ferdinand Part Ways With Guitarist Nick McCarthy". Pitchfork. Retrieved 25 October 2017.
  6. ^ Wicks, Amanda (19 May 2017). "Franz Ferdinand Introduce Two New Members". Pitchfork. Retrieved 25 October 2017.
  7. ^ Parker, Lyndsey (10 January 2018). "Franz Ferdinand talk politics and pop: 'You basically elected your worst person' (Video)". Yahoo! Music. Retrieved 25 January 2018.
  8. ^ a b Oshinsky, Matthew (25 October 2017). "Franz Ferdinand Return With Always Ascending, Share Title Track". Paste. Retrieved 25 October 2017.
  9. ^ "FFS announce details of the release of the first single from their debut album". Domino Recording Company. 13 April 2015. Retrieved 2 November 2017.
  10. ^ "FFS". Domino Recording Company. Retrieved 2 November 2017.
  11. ^ Trendell, Andrew (23 October 2017). "Franz Ferdinand tease return with snippet of new music". NME. Retrieved 25 October 2017.
  12. ^ Blais-Bille, Braudie (25 October 2017). "Franz Ferdinand Announce New Album Always Ascending, Share New Song: Listen". Pitchfork. Retrieved 26 October 2017.
  13. ^ Cook-Wilson, Winston (25 October 2017). "Franz Ferdinand Announce New LP Always Ascending, Release Title Track". Spin. Retrieved 26 October 2017.
  14. ^ Reed, Ryan (4 December 2017). "Watch Franz Ferdinand's Vivid 'Always Ascending' Video". Rolling Stone. Retrieved 7 December 2017.
  15. ^ a b Gaca, Anna (8 January 2018). "Franz Ferdinand – "Feel the Love Go"". Spin. Retrieved 8 January 2018.
  16. ^ "diane-martel.com". Diane Martel (official website). Retrieved 8 January 2018.
  17. ^ "Lazy Boy". Boomkat. Retrieved 25 January 2018.
  18. ^ "Franz Ferdinand | Always Ascending | Domino Mart". Domino Mart. 25 October 2017. Archived from the original on 25 October 2017. Retrieved 26 October 2017.
  19. ^ a b "Franz Ferdinand | Always Ascending | Signed Deluxe LP Bundle". Domino Mart. 25 October 2017. Archived from the original on 25 October 2017. Retrieved 26 October 2017.
  20. ^ a b "Always Ascending (Regular Edition)". CDJapan. Archived from the original on 11 February 2018. Retrieved 11 February 2018.
  21. ^ a b "Always Ascending by Franz Ferdinand reviews". AnyDecentMusic?. Retrieved 21 February 2018.
  22. ^ a b "Always Ascending by Franz Ferdinand". Metacritic. Retrieved 8 February 2018.
  23. ^ Phares, Heather (10 February 2018). "Always Ascending - Franz Ferdinand". AllMusic. Retrieved 11 February 2018.
  24. ^ Ryan, Kyle; et al. (9 February 2018). "Son Lux, Franz Ferdinand, and more albums to know about this week". The A.V. Club. Retrieved 17 February 2018.
  25. ^ Aroesti, Rachel (9 February 2018). "Franz Ferdinand: Always Ascending review – geometric diagrams of pop". The Guardian. Retrieved 9 February 2018.
  26. ^ Gill, Andy (8 February 2018). "Album reviews: Franz Ferdinand - Always Ascending, Ezra Furman - Transangelic Exodus and more". The Independent. Retrieved 17 February 2018.
  27. ^ "Franz Ferdinand - Always Ascending". Mojo. No. 292. March 2018. p. 92.
  28. ^ Trendell, Andrew (8 February 2018). "Franz Ferdinand – 'Always Ascending' Review". NME. Retrieved 8 February 2018.
  29. ^ Monroe, Jazz (8 February 2018). "Franz Ferdinand: Always Ascending". Pitchfork. Retrieved 8 February 2018.
  30. ^ Hermes, Will (8 February 2018). "Review: Franz Ferdinand Return and the Dapper Crew Wants to Dance". Rolling Stone. Retrieved 9 February 2018.
  31. ^ Matt the Raven (8 February 2018). "Franz Ferdinand: Always Ascending". Under the Radar. Retrieved 17 February 2018.
  32. ^ "Always Ascending by Franz Ferdinand". Apple Music. Retrieved 25 October 2017.
  33. ^ Always Ascending (album liner notes). Franz Ferdinand. Domino Recording Company. 2018.
  34. ^ "Australiancharts.com – Franz Ferdinand – Always Ascending". Hung Medien. Retrieved 17 February 2018.
  35. ^ "Austriancharts.at – Franz Ferdinand – Always Ascending" (in German). Hung Medien. Retrieved 22 February 2018.
  36. ^ "Ultratop.be – Franz Ferdinand – Always Ascending" (in Dutch). Hung Medien. Retrieved 17 February 2018.
  37. ^ "Ultratop.be – Franz Ferdinand – Always Ascending" (in French). Hung Medien. Retrieved 17 February 2018.
  38. ^ "Franz Ferdinand Chart History (Canadian Albums)". Billboard. Retrieved 21 February 2018.
  39. ^ "Dutchcharts.nl – Franz Ferdinand – Always Ascending" (in Dutch). Hung Medien. Retrieved 17 February 2018.
  40. ^ "Lescharts.com – Franz Ferdinand – Always Ascending". Hung Medien. Retrieved 22 February 2018.
  41. ^ "Offiziellecharts.de – Franz Ferdinand – Always Ascending" (in German). GfK Entertainment Charts. Retrieved 16 February 2018.
  42. ^ "IFPI Charts". www.ifpi.gr. Retrieved 2 March 2018.
  43. ^ "Irish-charts.com – Discography Franz Ferdinand". Hung Medien. Retrieved 17 February 2018.
  44. ^ "Album – Classifica settimanale WK 7 (dal 2018-02-09 al 2018-02-15)" (in Italian). Federazione Industria Musicale Italiana. Retrieved 17 February 2018.
  45. ^ "Oricon Top 50 Albums: 2018-02-19" (in Japanese). Oricon. Retrieved 21 February 2018.
  46. ^ "NZ Heatseeker Albums Chart". Recorded Music NZ. 19 February 2018. Retrieved 16 February 2018.
  47. ^ "Portuguesecharts.com – Franz Ferdinand – Always Ascending". Hung Medien. Retrieved 21 February 2018.
  48. ^ "Official Scottish Albums Chart Top 100". Official Charts Company. Retrieved 17 February 2018.
  49. ^ "Top 100 Albumes – Semana 7: del 9.2.2018 al 15.2.2018" (in Spanish). Productores de Música de España. Retrieved 22 February 2018.
  50. ^ "Swisscharts.com – Franz Ferdinand – Always Ascending". Hung Medien. Retrieved 21 February 2018.
  51. ^ "Official Albums Chart Top 100". Official Charts Company. Retrieved 17 February 2018.
  52. ^ "Official Independent Albums Chart Top 50". Official Charts Company. Retrieved 23 February 2018.
  53. ^ "Franz Ferdinand Chart History (Billboard 200)". Billboard. Retrieved 21 February 2018.
  54. ^ "Franz Ferdinand Chart History (Independent Albums)". Billboard. Retrieved 23 February 2018.
  55. ^ "Franz Ferdinand Chart History (Top Alternative Albums)". Billboard. Retrieved 23 February 2018.
  56. ^ "Franz Ferdinand Chart History (Top Rock Albums)". Billboard. Retrieved 21 February 2018.
  57. ^ "Franz Ferdinand | Always Ascending | Standard CD". Domino Mart. Archived from the original on 11 February 2018. Retrieved 11 February 2018.
  58. ^ "Franz Ferdinand | Always Ascending | Standard LP". Domino Mart. Archived from the original on 11 February 2018. Retrieved 11 February 2018.
  59. ^ "Franz Ferdinand | Always Ascending | Cassette". Domino Mart. Archived from the original on 28 January 2018. Retrieved 11 February 2018.
  60. ^ "Franz Ferdinand | Always Ascending". Boomkat. Retrieved 11 February 2018.
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