The Oxford, U.K. quintet Foals are making waves all over the place with their new album Antidotes, which was just released on April 8th via Sub Pop in the U.S. and Transgressive in the U.K. The band has been compared to everyone from Bloc Party to Battles and Maximo Park, with descriptions from fans, bloggers, and the media that include “dance rock,” “math rock,” “pop,” “art rock” and a host of others. If you’re a music fan who is still unsure of what the dubious label “math rock” actually means, don’t let that put you off listening to this amazing band. However you choose to classify Foals, it cannot be denied that their sound is infectious and full of life. The catchy tunes are more accessible than most “math rock” outfits, and are chock full of body-moving beats, making Foals the perfect soundtrack to your next dance party. Indeed, the bloggers and industry insiders aren’t the only ones taking note: the band has just played some dates in Europe with R.E.M., so it’s unlikely that this group will be kept secret for much longer.
Foals is made up of childhood friends Jack Bevan (drums) and Yannis Philippakis (vocals/guitar), who were previous members of math rock band The Edmund Fitzgerald. Jimmy Smith (guitar) attended the University of Hull, where he and Walter Gervers (bass) were in a band called Face Meets Grill, which split up shortly before Foals formed. The other members of Foals, like Edwin Congreave (keyboards) left school to pursue the band, and we’re certainly glad they did!
The album itself is fantastic, with standout tracks being the upbeat “Balloons” and “Cassius.” Techno beats infused with horns are present, making this album as diverse as it is entertaining. The slower tunes aren’t as compelling on the dance floor, but the album as a whole is a great first effort. BTR is excited to see what these Brits have in store. The album was produced by TV On The Radio’s Dave Sitek, giving it a shot of NYC flavor that sets it apart from some of the other next-generation brit-poppers currently on the scene.
The band seems to have a great sense of humor, referring to themselves as “snotty art school dropouts” on their myspace, and naming the videos on their website “Foals Suck” 1-5. On their blog, they say of their record: “If you buy it then things will be good. We’ll probably become actual real men rather than boys with whippets and nipples.” We’re not sure what to make of that last statement, but suffice it to say that Foals is one big bundle of post-punk fun. Their live show is much-touted, and judging from the buzz this band has garnered, we suggest you get to one of their shows while the tickets are still reasonably priced.
Apr-22 Philadelphia, PA — Johnny Brenda’s
Apr-23 Washington, DC — Rock and Roll Hotel
Apr-24 New York, NY — Bowery Ballroom
Apr-26 Chicago, IL — Subterranean
Apr-28 Minneapolis, MN — 7th St Entry
Apr-29 Madison, WI — High Noon Saloon
May-01 Buffalo, NY — Big Orbits Sound Lab
May-02 Toronto, ONT — Lee’s Palace
May-03 Montreal, QUE — Cabaret
May-05 Burlington, VT — Higher Ground Lounge
May-06 Cambridge, MA — The Middle East
May-07 Hoboken, NJ — Maxwell’s
May-07 Brooklyn, NY — Union Hall
May 14 – Club Quattro Osaka
May 15 – Liquid Room Tokyo
May 16 – Bottom Line Nagoya
May-22 San Francisco, CA — Pop Scene
May-24 Los Angeles, CA — Troubadour
May-28 Portland, OR — Doug Fir Lounge
May-29 Vancouver, BC — Richards on Richards
May-30 Seattle, WA — Neumo’