Today, UK band, Foals have released a video for their next single “Mountain At My Gates” the clip was directed by Nabil who is best known for his work with Kanye West, Arctic Monkeys, Frank Ocean and Alt-J.
Foals and Nabil partnered with GoPro for the innovative video which was shot entirely on GoPro’s spherical Virtual Reality technology. This marks the first use of GoPro’s new VR technology on a music video production. Throughout the video’s spectacular visuals, Foals interact with and perform to the viewer in a fully immersive way in which we’re able to experience their performance through multiple perspectives.
“We are at the beginning of what we can really do with this technology,” says Nabil. “It has the power to transport you.”
Produced by James Ford (Arctic Monkeys, Florence + the Machine), “Mountain At My Gates” builds from the leftfield grooves and angular art-rock that characterized previous Foals’ anthems such as ‘My Number’ and ‘Miami’. This time, however, the quintet subverts expectations by twisting the track into a frenzied finale with a cacophony of sound.
“I’d recorded the beginning riff on my phone ages ago,” explained vocalist/guitarist Yannis Philippakis in a track-by-track interview with NME. “At the beginning it had a baggy feel, but became less so with more work. The central image – “I see a mountain at my gates” was from me getting more interested in seeing what would come out lyrically where there wasn’t a pre-conceived idea. Normally I write voraciously in books and journals, then harvest a lot of that for the record. This, though, came out instantaneously in the room.”
As with the rest of the ‘What Went Down’ album, Foals – completed by Jimmy Smith (guitar/keys), Walter Gervers (bass), Jack Bevan (drums) and Edwin Congreave (keys) – recorded ‘Mountain At My Gates’ at the desolate Studios La Fabrique which is located in the same village in the south of France in which Van Gogh was hospitalised after savaging his own ear.
What Went Down is an album that grapples with questions that are a world away from the bland bleatings of homogenised pop: permanence and impermanence; life and death; solitude; vulnerability; intimacy; passion; rage; humanity – weighty issues that make demands of the people creating that music, and of all those who listen to it, too.
Sonically, it’s an album that precariously seesaws between primal aggression and naked vulnerability. It’s an approach that delivers a contrast of muscular shocks with the fiery central riff of ‘Snake Oil’ and the menacing percussive march of ‘Albatross’ set against some of the band’s most openly experimentally moments to date such as cocktail of afrobeat and drum machines that underpins ‘Night Swimmers’ and the stripped-back, vocal-led ‘Give It All’.