Franz Ferdinand: Hits to the Head (Domino) | Under the Radar Magazine Under the Radar | Music Blog for the Indie Music Magazine
Thursday, November 30th, 2023  

Franz Ferdinand

Hits to the Head


Jun 07, 2022 Web Exclusive Bookmark and Share

Greatest hits or compilation packages like Franz Ferdinand’s Hits to the Head, almost two decades into a band’s career, are primarily for several different kinds of fans. There are the super obsessive completist types who have to own everything and as per usual with these sorts of compilations, they are baited here with the inclusion of two exclusive, newly-recorded tracks (“Billy Goodbye” and “Curious”), which while decent will likely not dispel the notion that many other fans have of the band peaking early with their first two albums—2004’s self-titled debut that made them international stars and the 2005 follow-up You Could Have It Better with Franz Ferdinand.

Since then, it could be argued that they have been either treading water or trying to recapture the spirit of those albums and with the exception of the masterful FFS collaboration with Sparks from 2015, nothing has come close. And that leads to the second type of fan that this compilation is for. This is also for those who stopped paying attention at certain points after those brilliant first two records and missed out on later highlights like “Ulysses” from 2009’s third album Tonight: Franz Ferdinand. As such, except for the fact that this collection starts with their first single “Darts of Pleasure” and continues in chronological order, this set is meant to replicate a typical live set for the band, particularly at festivals, as singer Alex Kapranos has noted in interviews.

And as such, while again it’s no surprise that 9 of the 18 previously released tracks here are from the first two records, tracks like the aforementioned “Ulysses” and “Evil Eye” (from 2013’s Right Words, Right Thoughts, Right Action, their last full-length with guitarist Nick McCarthy not including FFS) are strong enough to perhaps make some skeptical listeners go back and listen to those records. Regardless, it is always a thrill to hear absolute bangers like the international hit “Take Me Out,” “This Fire,” “Michael” and “Do You Want To”? (to name a few), even outside the context of the albums they appear on. (

Author rating: 7/10

Rate this album
Average reader rating: 8/10


Submit your comment

Name Required

Email Required, will not be published


Remember my personal information
Notify me of follow-up comments?

Please enter the word you see in the image below:

There are no comments for this entry yet.