Foals at Leeds 2010
I know it nearly happened a few times over the course of the weekend, but during the Foals set on Saturday evening in the NME/Radio 1 Tent, I did feel my heart actually stop. Don't worry, it did start again. This review isn't being written from another realm. It was a set to knock the breath out of you, as well as being one of those times where you stand there knowing that you are witnessing something of incomprehensible and mind blowing talent.
For a band with what is a mathematical, heavily technical and staccato sound, I was expecting plenty of energy and music to dance to; and much of it was exactly that, in fantastic abundance. The euphoric strumming of songs like 'Cassius' and 'Miami' got the crowd moving so much you'd think that they all had hot coals under their feet. The quirky off-beats, ethereal echoing and poppy jitters created another world inside that tent that evening; an intense submersion into a fireball of sound that engaged its entire audience. Watching how the band operate on stage they are like a machine, every element working steadily and at full power, churning out the composite layers of sound immaculately and efficiently; as is the nature of math-rock. However, the element that suddenly stole the show was the unexpected blast of unbridled soul towards the end of the set.
But without a doubt 'Spanish Sahara' was one of the best performances of the entire weekend. Utterly stunning, the tenderness and feeling poured into the soaring waves of sound felt like jumping into the ocean and feeling alive. Such overwhelmingly beautiful perfection, it was an incredibly special and intimate moment with the right song, in the right place, with the right people at the right time. I wanted to crowd-surf my way to the stage and hand them their Mercury Music Prize right there and then. An unforgettable set by one of Britain's most talented acts.