‘Holy Fire’, the third album by Foals, enters the music scene by offering 11 new songs. ‘Holy Fire’ is somewhat of an interesting album, as in some ways it manages to get a lot of things right, with a lot of the songs working and being incredibly strong. This is then contrasted by the fact that a lot of the other songs, whilst not necessarily band, just don’t seem to work as well. It seems the album has been split into two distinctive parts. The first half being the stronger half, with some really great songs, and the second half which just pales in comparison.
The album starts off with incredible strength, sounding somewhat different from what I’d say is an ordinary Foals song. It’s then followed by more strong songs, and it seems like ‘Holy Fire’ has the makings of a great record. There’s some brilliant instrumentals going on in the tracks, with a few of the songs demonstrating some true strengths to the ‘indie-rock’ genre. Certain songs like ‘Inhaler’ are as good as anything Foals have ever written, if not (dare I say it), better? However, it seems that halfway into the album, all these strengths seem to disappear as the quality takes a dip.
The second half of the album seems to be comprised mostly of more mellow songs that feel just that little bit quieter. Now normally, this wouldn’t really be a bad thing. It reminds me an awful lot of how Foals’ first album ‘Antidotes’ felt at certain times. However, it seems that on ‘Holy Fire’, this just hasn’t worked for some reason or other. It feels like there’s some vital ingredient missing from these tracks that stops them from being as strong as the first half. It is a shame, as it seems to ruin what would have been a great record. It just feels almost lacklustre in the second half, with nothing ever taking off and hitting the heights that the first half of the album did.
It is a great shame, as ‘Holy Fire’ had all the makings of a great record, but a poor second half of the album really lets it down. There are some great songs present on the album, showing that Foals are still capable of writing some incredible songs. The whole album is just let down by a much poorer second half, which just never matches up to the standard that the first half set. It is disappointing as I feel that Foals have just let themselves down somewhat. The album’s strong first half just isn’t enough to make up for it’s weaker second half, and instead the second half just really drops the quality of the whole album.
- ★★★☆☆ 3/5
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