CD Total Life Forever [Foals] [CD] [1 disc] (CD 6460780),
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Total Life Forever [Foals] [CD] [1 disc]
1. Blue Blood
3. Total Life Forever
4. Black Gold
5. Spanish Sahara
6. This Orient
8. After Glow
10. 2 Trees
11. What Remains
Manufacturer Part Number (MPN): 5186591372
After Foals scrapped the mix of their debut, Antidotes, by TV on the Radio's Dave Sitek, it was clear that they were a band that was interested in creating their own sound. That sentiment may be why their follow-up, Total Life Forever, sounds more like a reaction to their first record than a continuation of it. Many of the elements that drove Foals into the spotlight in the first place are definitely still in place. There's plenty of cascading, Minus the Bear-style guitar work and funky Talking Heads influence in their math-pop-meets-the-dancefloor rhythms. What's missing is the edge. Total Life Forever is considerably more subdued than its predecessor, lacking much of the uptempo thump found on Antidotes. In its place is a mellower, more spacious sound. While this new sound is still danceable, it's far more refined than the angular post-punk riffing that fans might be expecting. Right from the beginning, the album-opening, "Blue Blood" makes it clear that Foals are taking a different, more patient approach to songwriting, letting the song build and build on itself as it methodically works itself into a frenzy before leaving the way it came in. Because of the changes here, fans of the early, pre-Antidotes singles may find Total Life Forever to be too restrained, lacking the youthful vigor of their debut. Where some see restraint, others may very well see refinement, and those who appreciated Antidotes' more spacy passages will find that Foals' reinvention of their sound is a calculated risk that definitely pays off. ~ Gregory Heaney
Alternative Press - "[With] a slower, more methodical approach that lets these pop gems blossom out in thin ribbons....Whatever the inspiration -- spectral or otherwise -- it has done wonders for the band."
CMJ - "There's nary a misstep on the album; every song packs the emotional punch of a heartbreak."
Billboard (p.37) - "'This Orient' utilizes a poppy guitar pattern before launching into an atmospheric shoegaze-inspired chorus."
Mojo (Publisher) (p.96) - 4 stars out of 5 -- "[With] inventive, interlocking figures that glint and burble, recalling Can's Michael Karoli or skewed African highlife as readily as Battles or Interpol."
Mojo (Publisher) (p.55) - Ranked #25 in Mojo's "The 50 Best Albums Of 2010" -- "[W]ith splintered, restless guitar melodies. Quietly epic."
Pitchfork (Website) - "At every turn, TOTAL LIFE FOREVER is inviting. Much more alive than earlier efforts, it's an album with a complexion that constantly changes with time."
Clash (magazine) - "[A] massive leap forward for the band. The music writhes with a renewed ambitions, capable of moving from near ambient strains of electronica to propulsive African funk in a drum break."
Uncut (magazine) (p.86) - 4 stars out of 5 -- "[T]hey've moved their frenetic, intricate pop on to create something more subtle and long-lasting."
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Warner Bros. 5186591372
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