Thursday, April 03, 2008
Release Date-Apr 8, 2008
Review-For their adventurous debut, this Oxford quintet recorded with TV on the Radio's Dave Sitek; the schizophrenic result is both twenty-first-century Brit pop (see Bloc Party) and nuevo New York art rock (see Battles). On "Electric Bloom," the combination is magic: Interlocking guitars and glints of electro-metallic percussion swarm around intimations of disaster, with maybe the most compelling enunciation of the word "hospital" since the first Modern Lovers LP. Later, a metronomic guitar pulse recalls minimalist composer Steve Reich, while vocalist Yannis Philippakis confides, "We fry balloons on a steel cologne!" Or something like that: Philippakis loves further obscuring cryptic lyrics with his delirious yawps. Mostly that's fine, since sublimely hypnotic arrangements of horn bursts and techno glitch beats generally render meaning unnecessary. But all that yelping about "electric shocks" ("Big Big Love [Fig. 2]") might be better buried in a dub mix. And if the pledge to "fight these vampires" ("Heavy Water") is a veiled threat to fellow buzz band Vampire Weekend, Foals may need to revisit their rhyme book.