Date: Thursday 24th October
Venue: Leeds Becketts University Student Union, Leeds
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Usually for a band to be playing an intimate show in a 1100 capacity venue would be pushing the boundaries, but when that band is the festival headlining indie rock titans Foals it can be excused. After the very successful show that Crash records put on for the release of ‘Part 1 Everything Not Saved Will Be Lost’ earlier this year, everyone had their fingers crossed that the same would be done for the release of ‘Part 2…’. As if Crash had heard our wishes, at the last minute they announced not one but two shows in one day for everyone to get the opportunity to see the band in such a close setting. Selling out within a couple of days it was clear how much excitement there was for these shows and heading into the venue for the late night show it was an amazing atmosphere. Despite an hour wait between the doors and the band taking to the stage there was a real sense of community on show with everyone trying to predict what songs were going to be played, their best memories of seeing Foals or even their excitement for the upcoming full tour later this year.
With the anticipation at breaking point the band took to the stage bang on nine to deliver an incredible show to the waiting crowd. Starting off with the huge sounding ‘The Runner’ with the huge riffs resonating well with the already bouncing crowd. As a mosh pit opened up it was clear that this may have been an intimate show but the crowd were here to make the most of the small space. Following the huge start the band kept the momentum of new tracks with the incredibly funky ‘Wash Off’ which had a completely different sound live with the pounding bass being brought to the forefront and leading the bouncing crowd to another level of intensity. Taking a step back with a few tracks off ‘Part 1…’ the band really showed how well the two albums worked in tandem. A standout moment was hearing ‘In Degrees’ live which sounded incredible and really kept the energy up despite being one of the bands slower tracks. After the slight deviation the band broke out the new material again with frontman Yannis asking the crowd if they were ready to get rowdy before launching into the one two of ‘Like Lightning’ and ‘Black Bull’. The crowd took up the challenge with both arms and the entire floor was bouncing by the end of the two tracks with the pit engulfing pretty much the front half of the venue.
After playing the tracks from their two new albums it was time to step back in time to older albums to finish the set with a bang and what better way than to start with the massive ‘My Number’ which got massive singalongs from the crowd throughout. Finishing off their setlist for tonight with a combination of ‘Inhaler’ and ‘What Went Down’ which capitalised on the huge energy the crowd had with Yannis taking his guitar through the crowd all the way to the back balcony and the band continuing to play on the stage as the crowd bounced around. As ‘What Went Down’ came to an end the band realised that they had just enough time to fit one additional song not from the set list in and tonight audience were treated to the sensational ‘Two Steps, Twice’. With the building guitars of the into akin to something that wouldn’t sound out of place in an And So I Watch You From Afar show it really showed the technical ability that the band had as well as their ability to write room filling anthems. Building up to the chorus the crowd reached breaking point and the insane levels of movement in the room when the chorus finally dropped was almost cathartic. With such a huge finale it really left the crowd with the best feeling as the band left the stage tonight knowing full well that everyone in attendance had a great time.
Having been a fairly recent addition to the Foals fan base thanks to the promotion of ‘Part 1…’on Crash Records social media it was great that an opportunity to see the band came up through Crash as it almost felt like I could give back to the shop for introducing me to the a new band. Yet again the organisation of such an incredible evening is a real testament to how in tune the shop and Leeds music scene are as a whole. With a huge host of other exclusive shows up and coming through the shop I would highly recommend you pay a visit and see what the shop have got coming up. I can’t wait to be back for another show later next month to catch Yungblud when he plays at The Wardrobe.