Franz Ferdinand ‘jumped’ at chance to headline Edinburgh’s Hogmanay

Dino Bardot, Julian Corrie, Alex Kapranos, Paul Thomson, and Bob Hardy of Franz Ferdinand perform onstage at The Forum in Inglewood, California.  PIcture: Kevin Winter/Getty Images for KROQ
Dino Bardot, Julian Corrie, Alex Kapranos, Paul Thomson, and Bob Hardy of Franz Ferdinand perform onstage at The Forum in Inglewood, California. PIcture: Kevin Winter/Getty Images for KROQ
0
Have your say

Franz Ferdinand singer Alex Kapranos has said the band jumped at the chance to headline Edinburgh’s Hogmanay celebrations - after a previous appearance fell victim to bad weather 15 years ago.

The indie-rock band’s frontman recalled scrambling to find a replacement gig in a tenement flat after the 2003/04 concert was cancelled.

Franz Ferdinand had been due to support Erasure in Princes Street Gardens but were thwarted by severe gales that battered the city and left four stewards in the gardens injured by falling gates and pieces of debris.

READ MORE: Promoter ‘devastated’ as high winds force Hogmanay cancellation

Kapranos said the offer of the headline slot for the 25th anniversary Hogmanay celebrations offered the band a “sense of completion.”

Speaking before taking the stage in Edinburgh, Kapranos said: “We were in a pub near Princes Street when it got called off. I can’t even remember if we sound-checked or not. There was a genuine danger to human life.

“I remember we decided against going back to Glasgow just starting phoning everybody we knew. My sister was living in Edinburgh at the time and we ended up in the flat of the boyfriend of a friend of hers in Marchmont.

“We managed to get our gear together and play the gig in time to bring the new year in.

“I’ve got to admit the gig in that flat was the first thing I thought of when we got offered this gig. It was a good night and a great party in the event.

“It gives us a nice sense of completion to come back and play this year. “I’m generally not a superstitious person. The only gig I’ve turned down because I thought it was chancing it too much was when were asked to play in Sarajevo to mark the centenary of the assassination of the original Franz Ferdinand.

”New year is celebrated across the planet and there are some great parties around the world, but nowhere celebrates Hogmanay quite like Scotland and there is nowhere else quite like Hogmanay in Edinburgh. For a band to be asked to do a gig like this is an exhilarating honour.”

Kaparanos, who was brought up in Edinburgh when he attended primary school in the city, recalled early visits to the gardens rolling down its embankments.

He added: “When I got off the train at Waverley Station and got a cab along Princes Street to our rehearsal rooms I just thought: ‘There’s nowhere else that looks like that. It’s a unique city with a unique backdrop for concerts.”

Tickets are still available for Franz Ferdinand’s Hogmanay gig, where they will be supported by Metronomy and Free Love.

Join our Facebook group Our Edinburgh to share images and news from and around the Capital