Its heavier opening track "What Went Down" was a great entry to the album, with a harder edge to their songs, similar to that of "Inhaler" that was on "Holy Fire", the fourth studio album by the Oxford via London quintet might be their best album opener so far. Songs that I can see them playing for the rest of their career will be "Mountain At My Gates", with that jangly guitar entry and the uplifting chorus it's up there with the best.
With the third track - "Birch Tree" - it takes in a flavour of Red Hot Chilli Peppers-esque bass at the beginning before they put their own sound, y'know, that guitar thing they do, low down the kneck and funky! It's a more relaxed side of the band, with "Give It All" also adding itself to the list, but this cut is more anthematic than the previous one, akin to that of "Spanish Sahara" this just gets bigger and better as it goes on!
"Albatross" sounds like another one of those singles ear-marked for a single release, with a bouncy chorus to it, sing-a-long worthy verses and an explosion of sound towards the end, Foals have really hit the nail on the head here, and it's a great classic example of wonderful song-writing. "Snake Oil" is one of those heavier tracks, but with some qwerky licks to it, for example the intro and some of the bridges, just keep an ear out in the latter third of the track, you hear Foals just going mad, performing a track they want, not one that'll sell, this is raw!
As we end up in the final third we're given a throwback, "Night Swimmers" sounds like a track that was cut off their second LP, and with elements from their third, here it's another 'heavier' affair - if you can call it that - but features Edwin a lot more, with the synths a lot more recognisable than ever! Next up is a powerful ballard, "London Thunder", the less I write about this the better, I want you to listen to it with an open heart and fall in love with it.
As we end with "Lonely Hunter" and "A Knife In The Ocean" you're left stunned. With some incredibly well produced tracks they leave you wanting more, especially the closing track. Fuck me Foals have done it again, it does range from the good to the OH MY GOD THIS IS GREAT. But the bottom line is that most of "What Went Down" is a great example of not conforming to the record label and the tremendously exceptional talent that is this quintet - FOALS - expect to see a lot more of them!
A tip would also be... buy the deluxe edition, the CCTV and Poolside Session versions of the tracks are worth the price alone!
Foals - What Went Down
Out of 10: 9.5/10
Buy / Foals - What Went Down