Franz Ferdinand's second album, You Could Have It So Much Better, hasn't even been in stores for a week, but they're already moving full-speed ahead with the video for the second single.
Working with director Scott Lyon, they've filmed a retro-leaning clip for the song "Walk Away" at London's Ealing Film Studio. In the post-World War II era, Ealing cranked out a string of witty, sardonic comedies (like 1947's "Hue and Cry" and 1955's "The Ladykillers") that became critical and box-offices successes and went on to define the pre-"Monty Python" era of British comedy.
"There is the feeling of those Ealing comedies in the video," Lyon said. "It's set in the late '50s and it's partially in black and white, partially in color, and it takes place on all these old film sets. But there's also lots of film-noir touches to the video. Lots of blacks and whites. And [Franz frontman] Alex [Kapranos] had a list of films that he wanted the video to reference: A lot of the lesser-known Hitchcock films, like 'Rebecca' and 'The 39 Steps.' Michael Powell's 'Peeping Tom.' 'The Third Man' [starring Orson Welles]. It's classically influenced and more cinematic than their previous videos."
Lyon was tight-lipped about additional details on the video, though he did say that in keeping with the whole film-noir feel, the members of Franz Ferdinand will be playing "detectives or double-agent types" in the "Walk Away" video, and that the clip does follow the rather twisted love story that the song details.
"It's a narrative video, but it's going to take a few watches to get the full story. The song is a love story, but something is obviously not quite right with it. It's got a kind of sinister edge to it. It's very much done in different tones," Lyon explained. "Sometimes when Alex sings, 'I love the sound of you walking away,' it's a compliment; other times it's a 'f--- off.' And the video is like that, though I don't know how it's going to end. It could go either way — and right now I don't know which way it's going to go."
Obviously, the video isn't finished yet — Lyon said it's currently in post-production, with October 17 as the tentative completion date — but he's already certain of one thing: Much like the song itself, the video for "Walk Away" will be unlike anything Franz has ever done before.
"It's funny, because I did their first video for them, for the song 'Darts of Pleasure,' back when they were just another Glasgow band. And now we're doing a massive video with a budget and a set and everything," he laughed. "So it was quite different in that regard. But the song's great because it's not as Franz Ferdinand-ish at all. It's like a curve. And Alex had a specific vision of how this video should look and feel. It is different from any other Franz Ferdinand video, but we didn't set out to make it that way."