The Karelia

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The Karelia
Origin Glasgow, Scotland
Genres Jazz, rock
Years active 1996–1998
Labels Sum Records
Associated acts The Blisters
The Amphetameanies
Franz Ferdinand
Past members Alex Huntley
Glen Thompson
Alan Wylie
Tassos Bobos
Thom Falls

The Karelia were a Scottish band formed by current Franz Ferdinand frontman Alex Kapranos, known at the time as Alex Huntley, in 1996.

History[edit]

The Karelia formed in late 1996 from the ashes of rock/jazz band The Blisters, with Huntley, Alan Wylie, and Glen Thomson of the earlier band joined by Greek drummer Tassos Bobos.[1] Their sound has been described as "prog/techno rock with Iggy-voxed overtones", and "jazzy film-noir lo-fi".[1]

The band's only album, Divorce At High Noon, was released in 1997 on Sum Records to little acclaim. Produced by Bid of The Monochrome Set,[1] it was an off the wall mix of rock and jazz trumpet with unusual lyrics. The final song, "Garavurghty Butes", was completely freestyle with improvised lyrics and musical arrangement. The band did not tour and were unknown outside Glasgow. Very few copies of the album sold (literally hundreds) and the band split in 1998 after contributing to an EP for the Guided Missile label.

Upon the huge success of Franz Ferdinand fans began to exchange originals of Divorce at High Noon for £50-£100. Because of this, the album was re-released in February 2005. It featured all of the previous album and two bonus tracks.

The band's name derives from the same named Greek tobacco industry "Karelia". It is also an area in Northern Europe in Russia (an autonomous republic), bordering Finland.

Line-up[edit]

The Karelia were:

Discography[edit]

Albums[edit]

  • Divorce At High Noon (1997) Sum Records:
  1. "Divorce At High Noon"
  2. "Love's A Cliché"
  3. "Say Try"
  4. "To His Coy Dietress"
  5. "Life In A Barrat Garret"
  6. "Crazy Irritation"
  7. "Remorse At High Noon"
  8. "Dancing Along To Nekrotaphion"
  9. "The Devil Rides Hyndland"
  10. "The Infinite Duration"
  11. "Nostalgia"
  12. "Tension"
  13. "Bleach Yours"
  14. "Exaggeration"
  15. "Garavurghty Butes"

reissued (2005) with bonus tracks:

  1. "Divorce At High Noon" (French Version)
  2. "Love's A Cliché" (Single Version)
  3. "Love's A Cliché" (video)

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c Strong, Martin C. (2003) "The Karelia", in The Great Indie Discography, Canongate, ISBN 1-84195-335-0