Tag Archive: New Release

Van Gogh, Distortion, and their Dance Rock Origins: ‘What Went Down’ – Foals (Review)

The second single, Mountain at My Gates, opens itself with its primary guitar hook and central riff. As the song progresses the lyrics preach ‘I see a Mountain at my Gates; I see it more and more each day’, mirrored by the mountainous distortion and guitar at the end.. The soundscape places Philippakis’ vocals behind the instrumentation and bellowing over it, and brings the droning guitar riffs at the forefront.

Proving that their venture into a newer sound is not a loss for the same quality of music, Birch Tree is very much a track that could be placed in the middle of ‘Total Life Forever’. Full of hooks and high-toned, distortionless guitar that uses few chords and more picking, much like the aforementioned album. It also makes effective use of an echoing vocal style, plenty of groove in the bassline that is reminiscent of the band’s initial dance rock influence, and a subtle synthesizer.

Of Monsters and Men find a new, darker direction with moody and obsessive Beneath the Skin.

Rated 7/10—highly recommended. Beneath the Skin has impressive lyric quality that is matched only by the tense instrumentation. A darker, moodier turn for the band that represents what could be a shift away from the Pop-Folk debut album My Head is an Animal, however Crystals is a step back in the original direction, and stands as more of a Pop sounding then the rest of Beneath the Skin appears to want to do.