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With the single, “No You Girls,” featured in the current iPod Touch TV spot, airplay at Modern Rock has started to spike, as have sales of the album.
EPIC PUMPS UP FRANZ
Veteran Scot Pop-Rockers Use iTunes Ad as Gateway to Radio Airplay
Franz Ferdinand was formed in Glasgow, Scotland, named after the archduke of Austria, whose assassination set off the events that resulted in World War I.

Founded by singer/guitarist Alex Kapranos and drummer Paul Thomson, the band took off in the U.K. with “Take Me Out,” the second single from their self-titled 2004 debut, reached #3 on the British charts. A year before, an EP, Darts of Pleasure, had come out in England and the U.S. through Domino, receiving raves from the NME, Q and other U.K. publications.

Released by Epic after a spirited bidding war, the band’s first full-length effort, Franz Ferdinand, went on to sell more than 1 million in the U.S., earning platinum status. “Take Me Out” became a Top 5 Modern Rock hit and was the #1 single of the year in the annual Village Voice critics’ poll, as well as a winner of the prestigious Mercury Prize for top British album. The accompanying clip won an MTV Award for Breakthrough Video in 2004. The following year, Franz copped a pair of Brit Awards for Best Group and Best British Rock Act. In a sign of things to come, the single was used in the promotional campaigns for the launch of the Sony PSP portable video game console, as well as Madden NFL 2005.

The group’s second album, You Could Have it So Much Better, debuted in the Top 10 of HITS Album sales chart back in Oct, 2005.

After an absence of almost four years, the release of their third album, Tonight: Franz Ferdinand, finds the group stretching out artistically from their patented dance-pop sound, as they begin to explore African influences. With the single, “No You Girls,” featured in the current iPod Touch TV spot, airplay at Modern Rock has started to spike, as have sales of the album.

Currently touring Europe, the band launches its U.S. leg in Seattle on April 13 and Oakland April 15 before appearing at Coachella April 17, to be followed by a tour featuring a date at New York’s Roseland Ballroom (5/7), then embarking on a summer tour of European festivals, including U.K.’s Glastonbury.

The label’s new President, Amanda Ghost, should be very familiar with the band from her time in the U.K., where Franz Ferdinand are superstars. And maybe she can do a little Ghost-busting when it comes to the group’s U.S. profile.

Among Epic’s other marketing/promotional initiatives:

*Album promotion at Diesel stores nationwide.

*Varvatos print campaign currently in place, with ads in GQ, etc. 

*MySpace video premiere of “No You Girls” this week.

*Video blog from every show posted on website

*Upcoming appearances on Jimmy Kimmel Live (4/16), Letterman (5/5)

*Perform cover of Blondie’s “Call Me” on War Child Presents Heroes album to benefit children affected by war.

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