“Everything not saved will be lost” – a computerised female voice announces the name of the latest full-length album by the world’s premier festival band, Foals. Opening with a rousing rendition of On The Luna, the second single from the first half of their latest album (Pt 2 is due for release later this year), they instantly have the crowd eating out of the palms of their hands – especially the diminutive but charismatic frontman Yannis Philippakis.
Against the backdrop of a stone-splitting sky, pink palm trees (fitting for their tropical brand of dance-rock) and an increasingly colourful light display, Foals follow solid support from psych-rock touring buddies Yak and are explosive from the get-go. Fan favourite Olympic Airways from debut album ‘Antidotes’ and the anthemic Mountain At My Gates from ‘What Went Down’ each make early appearances, the former dedicated by Yannis to “those who were there since the start”. This would transition seamlessly into My Number.
A welcome change in pace came in the form of slow-burning Sunday – at least until the dance breakdown as the song reached its climax. All the while, Yannis would give props to the Dublin crowd. “It’s been a while since we’ve played Dublin and we’ve been itching to come back” he declares before wading out into the crowd to riff on Providence, a rocker from the band’s third album ‘Holy Fire’. If ever there was a perfect crowd to play for after a slot at Glastonbury, it’s a Dublin crowd. Yannis knows this all too well. “We knew you guys were gonna be a spicy bunch. We knew it was gonna be a rowdy one”.
The crowd took a knee for the definitive Spanish Sahara before jumping and jiving along to the song’s crescendo. In line with the more moody material on display and the darkened sky, the band’s backdrop of pink palm trees would give way to monochromatic lions by the time closer Inhaler came to an end. Foals weren’t to go quietly, re-emerging to offer fans a sneak peek at ‘Everything Not Saved Will Be Lost Pt 2’ – a nasty, scuzzy number. Finally bidding farewell with Two Steps, Twice, the band prove, love ‘em or hate ‘em why they have earned a reputation as one of the best live acts the UK has to offer.