Wednesday, 19 May 2010

Album Review: Foals

Foals: 'Total Life Forever' (Warner)

1. Blue Bloood
2. Miami
3. Total Life Forever
4. Black Gold
5. Spanish Sahara
6. This Orient
7. Fugue
8. After Glow
9. Alabaster
10. 2 Trees
11. What Remains

Weird or unique? It's taken me countless listens to this album to decide and I'm still none the wiser! Foals, the Oxford quintet who made as much a name for themselves for ditching their high profile US producer (TV On The Radio's Dave Sitek, in case you're interested) as for producing a stunning debut - Antidotes - are a quirky bunch. Perhaps that's what makes their music so gripping.

Follow up Total Life Forever is wonderfully chaotic. It will need a few outings for listeners to get their head around it, but it's worth being patient. Opening track 'Blue Blood' is a prime example of what Foals are all about. A simple chord is enough to reel you in, before the track bursts to life and you're hooked. Marvellous piece of music.

The rest is an eclectic melee of sounds and emotions ranging from the chirpy 'Miami' to the profoundly chilling 'Spanish Sahara' - and where tracks like swirling Bloc Party-esque 'Black Gold', complete with its ominous announcement that "the future is not what it used to be" or 'After Glow', which is volatile in crescendo, also play a major role.

With lead singer Yannis Philippakis also sounding a lot more assured, the only logical conclusion to reach is that Total Life Forever is a neither weird nor unique. Quite simply it's bloody brilliant!


NME-Europe rating: 8.5/10
Top Track: 'Spanish Sahara'

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Last 5 NME-Europe reviews:
The Golden Filter: 'Voluspa'
Los Planetas: 'Una Opera Egipcia'
Cybiont: 'Angels And Demons'
Two Door Cinema Club: 'Tourist History'
The Soft Pack: 'The Soft Pack'

Read all NME-Europe reviews