While there are lots of bands dealing in either danceable rock or navel-gazing pop, few bands combine the two quite like Foals. On Holy Fire, the third album from the English band, the post-punk revival is given a newfound sense of depth, creating songs that are rhythmic enough to draw listeners, but hypnotic enough to leave listeners lost in their wide-open spaces. This combination of atmosphere and momentum find Foals growing out of the shadows of titans like the Talking Heads and into a spaced-out, dance-punk niche that's all their own. Though a lot of the band's charm comes from the delicate interplay between the guitars and keyboards, the real star of the album comes by way of the massive, stadium-ready "Inhaler," which takes the sparkling, slow build used throughout the album and turns it on its ear with an eruption of massively fuzzy, Muse-esque guitars (and, to some extent, their bombast), creating one of the albums biggest and most rousing moments. Now that they're three albums deep, it feels as if Foals have found a nice middle ground between funk and feeling, making Holy Fire an album that is just as likely to get a room moving as it is to send its inhabitants into a fit of introspective conversation. This kind of duality is something that's hard to find, and it's a quality that could take Foals a long way if they're able to hold onto it.
AllMusic Review by Gregory Heaney