Foals hit Australia late last year to rock the summer festival circuit, including Falls Festival and Southbound in Perth. For those who couldn’t make the epic round of festivals over new years, they also spared time for a couple of sideshows, including one at Melbourne’s iconic Festival Hall. The last time the lads were here was when they played Palace Theatre - which is sadly no longer with us.
Opening the night was Mansionair, a duo consisting of Sydney boys who have been creating a storm on our local music scene. You might be aware of them from their Like A Version triple j cover of Future Island’s ‘Waiting On You’ - which was also played during their set. Their opening was truly beautiful and I look forward to seeing what they do next as they’re certainly ones to watch this year. Next up were fellow Brits and art-rockers Django Django.
Foals launched into their set with ‘Snakes Oil’ from their 2015 album What Went Down. The buzz that was felt the moment they hit the stage was both electric and instantaneous. Their opener also summed up and gave a preview on what we were going to expect from frontman Yannis Philippakis - pure energy. Next up was another new track, ‘Mountain at my Gates’, which was positively received by members of the crowd. Other new tracks played also included ‘London Thunder’, ‘A Knife In The Ocean’, as well as the title track ‘What Went Down’ - which was also the first track they played for their well deserved encore.
Fans of Foals’ old material needn’t fear, they also whipped out some of their classic favourites. This included ‘My Number’ which saw the dance floor go crazy and was arguably won of the most loved tracks from the night. Other older tracks played included ‘Blue Blood’, ‘Holy Fire’, as well many others.
The best moment of the night was their closing number, and also a much-loved older track, ‘Two Step, Twice’. As I can recall, they also closed with this track when they played in Melbourne a few years ago. As they years have gone by, we’ve seen them rework the track in a number of ways and still to this day, it’s one of their best live tracks.
Overall, Foals reaffirmed why they’re one of the worlds best live acts. If you couldn’t score tickets for the night, then you missed out on one hell of a show.
Written by Sally Swan