Alex Kapranos: The 5-Minute Interview

Lead singer of Franz Ferdinand
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The Independent Culture

What has the pressure been like for you to produce a successful follow-up to your debut album?

We've been putting more pressure on our label than they have on us. We felt bands take far too long to make records nowadays. They should stick it out. It doesn't mean it has to be half-hearted. Bands go on the road for too long, so by the time they get to the studio they're bored. We cut the touring short to get the record out as soon as we can.

What sightseeing have you been doing while touring in America?

We bought bikes in this second-hand shop in Minneapolis. Cycling is the best way to get a taste of the towns. We were caught in electrical storms in Minneapolis. We were cycling along - you know when the rain is heavy and driving into you so much you can't open your eyes? The hurricane siren was blaring. It was incredible; you could see the storm marching across the skyline. In Lawrence [in Kansas] the whole place turned black. We were at this guy's house sitting on the front porch in Kansas and it was like the bloody Wizard of Oz with the storm coming towards us.

What does the new website enable you to do?

It gives us the opportunity to put songs and snatches of videos people wouldn't get elsewhere. Maybe we can also develop some games.

What will the website » give your fans?

It would be good to get a forum going. It's about creating a sense of community. Giving people a platform for their views is more important than having the latest flash graphics.

Are you keeping an online blog?

All of us will be putting up a few words. I sometimes tend to write mini-novels instead of a few words!

Have you been given lots of gadgets to play with?

We all have our little cameras. It's good to have cameras on the road. You go to incredible places so you can make a record of where you've been.

Who would you have voted for in this year's Mercury Music Prize?

I'm glad Antony and the Johnsons won because the prize is supposed to be based on innovating and I've never heard another voice like it.

What is your trashiest habit?

One of my favourite onstage drinks is red wine and Coke. It's really tasty.

DS.Emotion ( is the London-based digital agency responsible for the Franz Ferdinand site and this year's online video diaries