June 15, 2005 14:09

KANYE WEST HELPS OUT FRANZ!

The rapper reveals the advice he gave Alex Kapranos and co…

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KANYE WEST has revealed what he told Franz Ferdinand - helping them shape their second album.

The Scottish band met the rapper earlier this year with Franz Ferdinand admitting West had been influential in their thinking towards the new album.

“We’ve been talking a lot about production and we really feel the most cutting edge stuff is being done in the world of hip hop right now,” explained Franz Ferdinand frontman Alex Kapranos. “Kanye West's a good example. We met him at the MTV Europe Awards and we were talking for quite a while. I think that's maybe where we'll look for inspiration on the next record."

However talking exclusively while on the set of the video for new single ‘Diamonds From Sierra Leon’ in Prague, West gave NME an insight into his conversation with Franz Ferdinand, and admitted the influence went both ways.

“I just told them I really liked how grimy their drums were, that was really important to me,” said the rapper who scored a critical hit – including a Top Ten finish in the NME’s album of the year’s poll last year – with his first album ‘The College Dropout’. “I wanted to know how they got their sound. I was asking them all types of questions. I told them they were my favourite band, there’s a bit of their feel in my new album.”

West even suggested the Scots had started a new genre, declaring them ’White Crunk’, which he’s incorporated on his new album ‘Late Registration’.

“I’ve just tried to push the envelope. Hopefully people will hear it and feel it,” said West. “This record is edgier, that would be the best way to describe the difference between this and ‘College Drop Out’. The album is very dark. I still have a sense of humour but I guess it’s a dark humour. It’s more Bill Murray than Bill Crosby.”

Featuring several guests including West’s protégé Common and possibly MIA – “I’m still waiting for her to lay down her verse, but she’s got the beat though!” declares West – ‘Late Registration’ will be released on August 15 and preceded by the single ‘Diamonds From Sierra Leon’ (July 4), which West believes best showcases the influence Franz Ferdinand had on him. “‘Diamonds’ is kind of White Crunk,” he explained of the track, which samples Shirley Bassey’s James Bond theme ‘Diamonds Are Forever’.

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