by Francis Andrews in New Music on Wednesday 23 January 2008

At a gig last year Foals were forced to abandon their last song halfway through because the stage was stormed by too many crazed fans. The reason behind the hype they’re creating, both on stage and in the normally merciless media, isn’t immediately clear upon first listen: the sound is less than friendly on the ears, and they don’t employ the same catchy hooks and melodic chorus patterns that shoot your average band to fame in their early years. Indeed they epitomise the ‘mathematical rock’ sound, where sequential guitar plucks, drum kicks and staccato vocals are the order of the day. But lying somewhere within this is a depth and energy — worthy of comparison with At The Drive-In and Fugazi — that riles the listener into an almost unquenchable head-nodding frenzy. The band has a collective vocal force that produces a barrage of hollering, ordering whoever is on the receiving end to stop dead and take in what they’re throwing at you. It’s shout after riff after drum loop, a relentless succession of blips, beeps and cries that interweave with pinpoint accuracy, in equal measures invigorating and exhausting. And with the sound refusing to let up, The Foals are likely to trample their way through 2008 and emerge victorious.

Listen to the Foals track, Hummer.