2019 is the year of the Foal, with Oxford’s finest returning with their second album in seven months, Everything Not Saved Will Be Lost Part Two.
Words by Jack Squibb
Back in January, Foals resurfaced to announce an ambitious project. Everything Not Saved Will Be Lost would be split into two parts and after a four-year wait, Foals returned with a bang releasing ‘Exits’.
Seven months later, plenty of headline slots at festivals, shortlisted for the Mercury Prize Award and claiming more accolades in the process, Part Two is upon us.
Foals remind us why they are one of the biggest and most innovative bands in the world right now.
The album opens with a tense segue, ‘Red Desert’, like a transition from Part One into Part Two. Opening with vibes of a big finale approaching like in classic Western cowboy films.
The tone from then on is set with a suffocating intensity that rarely releases its grip. Rammed with explosive bass lines and head-spinning hooks and rhythms, each member has a standout moment. From Yannis Philippakis at his poetic best, to the shattering bass lines or outlandish hooks on guitar and infectious drumming.
With songs like ‘10,000 Feet’ making you feel like you’re the one falling from grace, the sheer aggression of ‘Black Bull’ and ‘Like Lightning’ where the band flex their creative muscles.
One of those moments where the high intensity relents is during ‘Into the Surf’.
Searing guitars and a seductive beat pushes you into a trance as Yannis’ sings so calmly.
Then a hair raising throwback to part one comes in when the glittering hook of ‘Surf Pt. 1’ slides into the melody. It’s a stunning piece of music.
Yannis sings with such beauty with the words he utters into his mic that it almost leaves you dumbfounded.
A beautiful and captivating moment of calm whilst in the thick of the storm.
There’s so much emotion ranging from anger to inner-peace, contentment to sadness and it’s expressed so well both lyrically and musically.
The record comes to a euphoric conclusion during the moody and atmospheric 10 minute long, ‘Neptune’.
It constantly teases a roaring end, which never arrives, breaking a tradition Foals’ fans have become used to. You instead become wrapped up in a beautiful melodic instrumental carrying you to the end of a well crafted masterpiece.
As the end approaches, rolling drums enter the fray, along with a ground shaking bass and riffs bouncing off of one another in an uplifting manner.
Then before you know it, the project that is Everything Not Saved Will Be Lost comes to an end, not with a bang, nor a whimper but with grace.
It was a gamble to put two albums out in the space of seven months yet this year Foals showed that it was worth it. The Everything Not Saved Will Be Lost project wasn’t overkill, it was a well executed effort and set a new standard for indie and rock bands to live up to.
Songs Worth Putting on Repeat: ‘Black Bull’, ‘Into the Surf’ and ‘Neptune’