Despite naming themselves after an archduke whose assassination sparked the inferno of World War I, Franz Ferdinand are way beyond a cheeky in-joke. Theyre a tightly coiled dance-punk band with a striking sense of melody, overflowing with clever songs and infectious hooks.
Under the glow of a suspended upside-down pink drumset, and next to a hanging spiral of pulsating speakers, a mélange of glass objects, inflated balloons, and electronics come to life as Miguel Frasconi, Ricardo Arias, and Keiko Uenishi begin to perform.
The heritage of jazz is filled with African-derived sensibilities that often challenge the expectations of genre categorization. Anthropologists have begun to regard the histories of slaves who were once invisible; the discovery of the African American burial grounds in New York has opened a floodgate of questions about the quality of life of Africans in early America.