24 Feb 2016

Foals : Live at Birmingham Barclaycard Arena

I went into this concert with very high expectations, everyone who I've spoken to that has seen Foals always bangs on about how utterly enthralling their gigs are - now, I see what all the fuss is about. Now, unfortunately I missed both Peace's first DJ set and Everything Everything, because I am a complete flake and complications with whereabouts of tickets. I plonked myself fairly central in the crowd, anticipating that I would be just behind the inevitable mosh pits. How wrong I was…

People were quite literally screeching as the Oxford five piece sprang into action, choosing to open with the more subdued tracks of 'Snake Oil' and 'Olympic Airways'.  The set-up is gorgeous may I add- lots of different screens with slightly mind bending graphics, all in striking blue. And as if by magic, they transition into 'My Number' and everyone, quite literally loses their shit. Pits open up everywhere, and although a lot of the people there seem to be idiots, it's a lot of fun. The noise is astounding, Foals are truly cementing themselves as a force to be reckoned with and are most definitely an arena band. Yannis is an incredible frontman, because you're never quite sure what he might do next. Maybe he'll launch himself off something, maybe he'll hurl himself into the crowd with wild abandon. Or maybe he won't. It's compelling to watch, as he belts out the lyrics to 'Mountain At My Gates', as sweat pours off him and he thrashes at his guitar. The band are tight, the sound is insanely good and each song is more impressive than the album version.

As 'Spanish Sahara' begins I hold my breath, my tacky indie kid self is FINALLY going to experience this banger live, and it's going to be emotional. And it was. It was stupidly beautiful, but alas, the cheeky Nandos 14 year old tossers were out in force, deciding to sit down (yeah, I have no idea either) before attempting to mosh to the song. Yeah. They tried to mosh. I'll let you digest that for a minute.

The night continued, 'Red Socks Pugie' and 'Inhaler' going off in the biggest sense of the phrase. The encore was also pretty impressive, with 'Two Steps, Twice' closing the affair and leaving me wanting more. Then only thing to taint the night was some of the fans, and I'll let them off because they were either too young and stupid to know better, or completely off their face on something... 

Foals are stepping up to the plate to become one of the best live bands around, when they were announced for Reading/Leeds headliners, I was sceptical. Now, I know that they're going to be the best shows of this bands career, and will probably launch them further into the limelight. Bravo, boys.

Words: Rachel Tindall