In the aftermath of Franz Ferdinand’s unusual 2015 collaboration with Sparks, Franz frontman Alex Kapranos has now returned as part of a countrified supergroup with Jason Lytle of Grandaddy, as well as members of Band of Horses, Midlake and Travis. BNQT’s 10-track Volume 1
emulates The Traveling Wilburys in presentation, but thankfully doesn’t try to mimic the sound. Rather than go for breezy Southern California, the recording leverages Lytle’s voice in “Mind of a Man” and other tracks, while going for the epic Franz Ferdinand guitar sound in “Hey Banana.” The result is an eclectic supergroup mélange in the style of Monsters of Folk. There are times when the orchestration might be a little heavy — and every band member may not deliver an equal contribution — but what could easily have been an alt-country misfire has turned out to be a fascinating smorgasbord of oddball styles.
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Grandaddy, Franz Ferdinand, Wilco