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LIVE REVIEW: Foals, Yak, Bournemouth International Centre, Bournemouth, 26/06/2019

This year has already seen indie-rock outfit Foals release their first record of the year Everything Not Saved Will Be Lost – Part 1 and in support of this they have recently been out on an arena tour across the UK and Ireland. We headed to the Bournemouth date of the tour where support came from Yak to see their ferocious live show in all its glory and dance away our Wednesday night in style.

Yak are a band who have rapidly made a name for themselves on the live circuit thanks to their chaotic live shows and their second album Pursuit of Momentary Happiness released earlier this year. With the venue slowly filling up the trio opened up with Heavens Above, a track packed with riffs and driving drumlines. The trio might not have captivated the whole crowd, however, the turning point came with a strange take on He’s Got The Whole World In His Hands. If there was something we didn’t expect to hear on a setlist tonight it was definitely this, however vocalist Oli Burslem made this work incredibly well. Sadly sound issues saw the band screaming out for their tech Phil’s help to which their calls were answered and after a short break from the stage, the band returned fuelled with new energy to complete their set.

Foals are a band made for the beautiful weather we’re having at the moment, their summery vibe makes it impossible to not want to grab a drink and have a dance surrounded by all your friends and that’s exactly what Bournemouth did during their triumphant set. Tonight’s stage set up followed the album artwork theme with leaves hanging from the stage ceiling and a tropical feeling, matching the heat both inside and outside the seaside venue.

Kicking off the jam-packed setlist was On The Luna taken from the band’s latest release Everything Not Saved Will Be Lost – Part 1, with twirling guitar lines and electronic undertones seeing the crowd moving along to the beats and giving the quartet a warm Bournemouth welcome. Now with five albums under their belt, there’s plenty of material to choose from to build a setlist and fans both old and new were treated tonight.

Vocalist Yannis Philippakis didn’t hold back as he worked the crowd into a frenzy through tracks such as rowdy Providence, which saw everyone chanting along to “I’ll bleed just a little bit too” proving the power the frontman had over the crowd. However during the night it wasn’t all rocked up, riotous fun as funky My Number showed, the electro-pop sound got underneath the skin instantly turning moshpits into dancefloors and altering the vibe in the venue. Foals are an incredibly special band and even their setlist variation can highlight this as they slammed straight back into the hard-hitting real life of Exits proclaiming “This song is about how fucked we are. Hope you like it!” and honestly? The crowd loved it. The world might be messed up but Foals are here to bring some light even when times might feel dark outside of the venue surroundings.

In the time since Foals were last in Bournemouth a lot has changed in their world, an example of this is the magnitude and popularity of the band. Previously playing 300 capacity venue Sixty Million Postcards back in 2012, they’re now gearing up for the release of the second part of the Everything Not Saved Will Be Lost set for release later this year. To celebrate this and tease fans ahead of its release as part of the show’s encore Black Bull taken from this record was performed with Philippakis getting acquainted with the audience down the front.

With Bournemouth left wanting more What Went Down was the chaotic carnage to shows Foals at their finest, exhibiting their slickest teamwork of the night so far. From Jack Bevan towering on his drum stool and nearly taking a tumble to Jimmy Smith’s sharp guitar work spiralling around the track, weaving between Philippakis’ vocals.  Rounding off the night was 2008 classic Two Steps, Twice taken from their debut album Antidotes. This elongated track felt like it was never ending but that, in turn, was what everyone truly wanted; the night to never end.

During the course of the night, one thing said onstage became an incredibly important statement of the night: ‘Foals Forever’ because this seems to be the case as they’re showing no sign of slowing down with their fiery live shows which erupt into carnage for everyone to get involved with. With their second album of the year just around the corner, we don’t expect Foals to be disappearing any time soon, and for that we, and no doubt the adoring crowd, are extremely grateful. It truly will be Foals forever.


Written by: Nicola Craig

Photos by: Connor Mason

Nicola Craig
Head of Live with an unwavering love for the seaside, live music and writing about others instead of myself. Twitter: @nicolalalalar