Foals

  • 23 May 2007

Band form

2005

Foals (formed 2005)

Foals are an alternative rock band formed in Oxford, UK consisting of five members: Yannis Philippakis (Lead singer and guitarist), Jack Bevan (Drummer), Jimmy Smith (Rhythm guitarist), Walter Gervers (Bassist), Edwin Congreave (Synth, Keyboard). They are best known for their tracks 'Olympic Airways' and 'My Number'.

Formation: Yannis and Jack started writing music from an early age when playing with Lina Simon in their first band 'The Edmund Fitzgerald', but later disbanded due to things becoming "too serious". Walter and Jimmy were also part of a small Oxford band early on called 'Face Meets Grill', which disbanded after playing Truck Festival in 2004 on account of the members wanting to pursue different paths. Once Foals had formed, every member of the group (apart from Jimmy) dropped out of university to focus on the band after having been signed with Transgressive Records - even Yannis, who abandoned an Oxford degree in English Literature.

Musical career: Foals are known to have developed and transformed their sound over the course of the seven year period since their first record was released in summer 2008. Their debut album 'Antidotes' peaked at number 3 on the UK album charts, with popular singles like 'Cassius' and 'Red Socks Pugie' being included on the track list. The ambiguous lyrics and high-pitched indie guitar riffs were exchanged for some deeper sounding synth and experimental rhythms with 2010's 'Total Life Forever' - an album which was nominated for the 2010 Mercury Prize and included the popular 'Spanish Sahara' that was used in TV shows such as 'Misfits' and 'Skins'. Foals' third album was released in February 2013 entitled 'Holy Fire' - consisting of much heavier, more versatile and more honest tracks such as 'Inhaler' and 'Providence'. Foals fourth and latest album 'What Went Down' is set to come out on the 28th August 2015. Known as one of the greatest live bands in the country and having previously headlined festivals such as Parklife, Bestival and Latitude, Foals last UK tour ended with two sell-out gigs at Alexandra Palace in February 2014. In 2013 Q awarded Foals with the Best Live Act award whilst 'Inhaler' became NME's Best Track of 2013. 'Holy Fire' was also the NME reader nominated 'Best Album of 2013'. Socially frontman Yannis has mirrored the image of musicians like Thom Yorke in denouncing the music streaming service Spotify. He's proved himself to be controversial at times and not afraid to state his views and opinions, exemplified in 2013 when he called David Guetta's music, 'bulls**t. It is an abomination.'

Foals - 2016 BRIT Awards held at the O2 - Arrivals. - London, United Kingdom - Wednesday 24th February 2016

Foals - BRIT Awards 2016 - Arrivals - London - Wednesday 24th February 2016

The Foals - The Brit Awards 2016 (Brits) held at the O2 - Arrivals at The Brit Awards - London, United Kingdom - Wednesday 24th February 2016

Edwin Congreave, Jack Bevan, Jimmy Smith, Yannis Philippakis , Walter Gervers of Foals - The NME Awards 2016 held at the O2 Academy - Arrivals at The NME Awards - London, United Kingdom - Thursday 18th February 2016

Chloe Dobinson's Top 10 Albums Of 2015

By Chloe Dobinson in Music / Festivals on 02 January 2016

Blur Drake The Libertines The Weeknd Foals Kendrick Lamar Florence and the Machine Muse Wolf Alice Disclosure

Chloe Dobinson recaps her favourite albums of 2015


Image caption Foals are coming with new album 'What Went Down'

The Oxford quintet have been working in the South of France for the recording of this album, taking on the unlikely setting of a 19th century mill as artistic inspiration. They teamed up with a new producer, Simian Mobile Disco's James Ford who has previously worked with the likes of Arctic Monkeys, Klaxons and, most recently, Mumford & Sons.

Continue reading: Foals To Make A Grand Return With 'Madman' Summer Album 'What Went Down'

Parklife Festival Apologises For Worst Marketing Campaign Of 2014

By Michael West in Movies / TV / Theatre on 16 May 2014

The Parklife Weekender Snoop Dogg Foals

The Parklife organisers were forced to apologise after causing some distress.

The organisers of Manchester's Parklife Festival have apologised after sending out marketing SMS messages to festivalgoers, claiming to be from the recipients' mothers. "Some of the Parklife after parties have already sold out. If your going, make sure your home for breakfast," the messages read, in a bid to sell tickets for the after-show events.

Image caption Foals will headline Bestival on Saturday night

Festival curator and DJ Rob da Bank made the announcement saying, "Ahoy there shipmates and welcome to my desert island! Yes folks, HMS Bestival has set sail once more and we have finally landed back on the Isle of Wight for our 11th instalment - a Desert Island Disco. Foals were voted best live act of last year and I'm delighted they'll be headlining the Saturday night – there’s no better indie guitar band in the UK right now.

Continue reading: Bestival Line-Up Just Keeps On Getting Better As Beck And Foals Join Outkast

Dom Gourlay's Top 10 Albums Of 2013

By Staff Writer in Music / Festivals on 23 December 2013

Hookworms Arcade Fire My Bloody Valentine Factory Floor Foals Jagwar Ma

What's Dom Gourlay's number one album of 2013?

After an immense year for music, here's reviewer Dom Gourlay's favourites for 2013 - and possibly for a long while after!

Arcade Fire 'Reflektor' - Early reviews were ridiculously negative, probably because journos were invited to a one-hour listening session in a plush Soho bar while being plied with free booze. The test of time has proved otherwise. And some.

Continue reading: Dom Gourlay's Top 10 Albums Of 2013

Hayley Fox's Top Albums Of 2013

By Staff Writer in Music / Festivals on 23 December 2013

Bastille Vampire Weekend Jon Hopkins James Blake Disclosure Peace Haim Foals Arctic Monkeys

Hayley Fox tells us her top 10 albums of 2013

Darkside 'Psychic' - After an EP in 2011, Darkside released their debut album this year. The duo - the project of Nicolas Jaar and Dave Harrington - gave as good as they got on 'Psychic', honing their talents as individual musicians. Wonderfully crisp textures ride over its entirety, creating a rich, confident ambience.

Continue reading: Hayley Fox's Top Albums Of 2013

Is Laura Mvula The Winner Of The Mercury Music Prize 2013?

By Michael West in Music / Festivals on 30 October 2013

Laura Mvula Arctic Monkeys Foals Mercury Music Prize David Bowie

We're tipping Arctic Monkeys for a second Mercury Music Prize, but the bookies are sticking with Laura Mvula's 'Sing to the Moon.'

Laura Mvula's debut albumSing To The Moon, one of the contenders for the BBC Sound of 2013 title, could claim a far more lucrative and career-defining prize at London's Roundhouse tonight.

Laura Mvula Is The Favourite For the Barclaycard Mercury Music Prize

For weeks, Disclosure's Settle has been the bookmakers' favorite to win the Barclaycard sponsored prize and £20,000 prize money, though on Wednesday Mvula's impressive record - a fusion of jazz, pop and even orchestral elements- was cut to just 4/6 with most bookies. Paddy Power are still holding strong with even money odds, but there's been an undeniable shift in who the bookmakers believe will win the Mercury Music Prize, presented by Lauren Laverne tonight.

Continue reading: Is Laura Mvula The Winner Of The Mercury Music Prize 2013?

Mercury Music Prize List Has "More Good Albums...Than For A Very Long Time"

By Lauren James in Music / Festivals on 12 September 2013

Arctic Monkeys Laura Marling Disclosure Laura Mvula David Bowie Foals James Blake

With David Bowie, James Blake, Arctic Monkeys and Laura Marling this year could be truly hard to call.

This year's Barclaycard Mercury Prize could be one of the greatest lists of nominees in the awards history. 2013's nominees shortlist includes talent old and new, rock, pop, and dance with one thing to unite them all: they represent a selection of Britain and Ireland's strongest mainstream albums released during the last 12 months.


Bowie Looking A Favourite To Win.

It would be almost too easy to say that David Bowie will win: the 66 year-old made a triumphant and unexpected return this year with the critically lauded The Next Day which was recorded in secret over two years. He's also the bookies favourite along with Arctic Monkeys at the moment, with odds that are unlikely to change. Last time Bowie was nominated was in 2002 when he suffered defeat to pop star Ms. Dynamite but this time round there's been such a lot of press surrounding Bowie's come-back that he's been hard to ignore.

Continue reading: Mercury Music Prize List Has "More Good Albums...Than For A Very Long Time"

David Bowie Leads The Pack In Mercury Prize Nominations

By Joe Wilde in Music / Festivals on 12 September 2013

David Bowie Arctic Monkeys Laura Marling Disclosure James Blake Foals Jake Bugg Rudimental

The returning Thin White Duke has emerged as the front-runner to take home this years Mercury Music Prize

David Bowie came back from his retirement/hiatus completely unannounced this January, when he released the video for the single 'Where Are We Now,' and managed to catch everyone off guard with his birthday announcement of a new release and the subsequent quality of his first album in a decade.