Foals is slowly but surely taking the vacant place of power alt-rock bands like The Strokes and Muse, who either are absent or less efficient in grabbing every rock fan’s attention in recent years. Foals’ singer Yannis Philippakis, 29, can use both an aggressive to tone (What Went Down) and an almost crooner-ish style (Lonely Hunter) that sounds like a blend of Tindersticks with Duran Duran. Yeah, I know, sounds weird, but it works.

In their popper moments, like on Mountain At My Gates, Foals sound like Imagine Dragons, which certainly isn’t a compliment. It’s a shame because many of the guitar riffs on which the songs are based are cool and catchy. Some songs are just too much in the lazy indie pop zone (Birch Tree). There’s just no interest in tunes that don’t stand out. Give It All is so predictable and teen-interest focused that it’s hard to endure more than one minute. Halfway through the song, cheesy keyboard sounds with tom drums when the word “thunder” is mentioned will make your eyes look at the ceiling. Come on.

 

I’ll give them one thing: their song intros are always cool. The first 10 seconds of every song are catchy and intriguing (Albatros). Great strategy to capture sales with kids rapidly checking out every track on iTunes or BandCamp. Problem is the rest of the song won’t make you shiver, like it should.

Not impressed.

Foals got noticed in 2010 with their second album on Sub Pop Records, “Total Life Forever” and capitalized on the success of their follow-up album, the Alan Moulder & Flood produced “Hold Fire”, in 2013, playing at major festivals like Glastonbury, Coachella and Roskilde, just to name a few.

FOALS
What Went Down
(Transgressive Records / Warner, 2015)

-Genre: alternative rock
-In the same style than Battles, Bloc Party, Imagine Dragons

Follow the band via their Facebook page
Listen to videos on the band’s YouTube channel

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About The Author

Nicolas Pelletier

Mélomane invétéré plongeant dans tous les genres et époques, Nicolas Pelletier a publié 6 000 critiques de disques et concerts depuis 1991, dont 1100 chez emoragei magazine et 600 sur enMusique.ca, dont il a également été le rédacteur en chef de 2009 à 2014. Il publie "Les perles rares et grands crus de la musique" en 2013, lance le site RREVERB en 2014, et devient stratège numérique des radios de Bell Média en 2015, participant au lancement de la marque iHeartRadio au Canada en 2016. Il dirige maintenant la stratégie numérique d'ICI Musique, la radio musicale de Radio-Canada.