Before they joined forces in Glasgow in 2001, the four looked like long shots for rock stardom.
Hardy: "I was in art school, and Alex and I worked as chefs together. I'd never played an instrument."
Kapranos: "I delivered for Indian restaurants. I'd get paid with curry, plus tips."
Thomson: "I used to model [nude] for [art classes]. I also donated bits of fat from my butt cheeks [for research]."
McCarthy: "I studied jazz and classical music. I moved to Glasgow looking for guys to play with—ha! Like a little kid."
Thomson: "We got our name from the Archduke Franz Ferdinand, whose assassination caused the world to change. We'd say [in interviews] it's because every band should change the world. Bunch of bollocks—it's just a sound bite, really."
LIFE ON THE ROAD
Touring's a trip—with some downsides.
Thomson: "There are people who are like, 'Yeah, Franz Ferdinand, dudes!' And it's like, three years ago I would've been beaten up by the same guy."
McCarthy: "Food in the States—the portions are ridiculous. We have a healthy appetite, but bloody hell!"
Hardy: "You miss just staying in and having a bath."
McCarthy: "I miss haggis. It's a cliché, but it's really good."
PERKS OF FAME
Designer suits, room service and star encounters
Hardy: "We're on the road with our closest friends."
McCarthy: "We get malt whiskey [provided backstage], which is quite posh."
Kapranos: "If [Dior Homme's Hedi Slimane] makes something for me that I like, I'll wear it. I like to dress up."
Thomson: "We met David Bowie. He did this really bad impression of a regional accent and there was this awkward moment. I really warmed to him after that."