• Record Label: Sub Pop
  • Release Date: Apr 8, 2008

Generally favorable reviews - based on 27 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 18 out of 27
  2. Negative: 0 out of 27
  1. The two guitars pick out cascading notes--never chords--against one another, the bass borrows from both Interpol and Gang of Four, and Philippakis' voice cries out in repetition wonderfully, but it's these occasional horn bursts, the electronic chops and blips, that truly complete the songs, making "Antidotes" not merely a lesson in post-new wave noodling, but evidence of the power and excitement of the genre and music itself.
  2. While it's true that the sheer precision of their playing is what makes some songs as great as they are, the organic touches of horns and textural washes of electronics help the group move into ground that hasn't been mined as much.
  3. Fantastic. This is the best new band Sub Pop has worked with in years. [June 2008, p.131]
  4. By tossing some horns and a variety of dark basslines into the mix, the U.K. quintet creates intense, unique songs that are more than a sum of their influences.
  5. Foals are a tight band with hook-laden grooves. Not worth the hype, but definitely worth keeping an eye on.
  6. They have crafted a terrific debut album and are prime to make a dent in the indie community.
  7. Antidotes is frequently exhilarating, challenging but immediate, cryptic and catchy, calm then frantic, as intricate, itchy fret-webs are weaved around Afrobeat drums and far-out sonics.
  8. Promise delivered, divided by expectations frenzied, multiplied by still-evident potential for future releases… equals a Pitchfork-style 8.6.
  9. It's hard not to admire the jerky, clean-toned guitar scribbles on 'Cassius,' but most of the rest of the song sounds like a Franz Ferdinand b-side.
  10. These are early days, of course, but some worrying lapses into blustery Editors’ territory aside, Foals prove to be a tricksy, livewire prospect.
  11. 60
    You can only imagine the verbal bonbons Gallagher has in store for Oxford’s Foals, whose bristling, high-energy dance shtick borrows heavily from better U.K. bands--and whose members were gracing magazine covers months before the release of this underwhelming debut.
  12. 80
    Antidotes feels like riding a tea-tray down an icy mountainside. [Apr 2008, p.106]
  13. They do make thoroughly exciting music that becomes quickly airborne, able to move the listener to a different plane with disarming ease.
  14. Their debut sounds sleek and exhilarating, although Foals seem cautious about completely breaking out of the punk-funk strictures that have confined them so far.
  15. A perfectly executed debut as might be expected from a band championed in OMM53 for their mathematical precision.
  16. These moments of misplaced weight make Antidotes hard to recommend, but there are good ideas and moments all over the record.
  17. Antidotes might be a touch weird, enough to earn the badge of “musician’s music”, and its cryptic lyricism isn’t typical of a romp. But when Foals’ rhythms bristle and their guitars go colorfully spastic, the art house and dance house become one and the same.
  18. Two forgettable bonus tracks tacked on to Sub Pop’s U.S. edition of Antidotes don’t help on that score. We don’t need any more of what’s already here.
  19. While there is no denying the heady rush of the band in full flow, predictability creeps in over 45 minutes. [Apr 2008, p.113]
  20. Philippakis loves further obscuring cryptic lyrics with his delirious yawps. Mostly that's fine, since sublimely hypnotic arrangements of horn bursts and techno glitch beats generally render meaning unnecessary. But all that yelping about "electric shocks" ("Big Big Love [Fig. 2]") might be better buried in a dub mix.
  21. 70
    They never let math get in the way of a good time. [Apr 2008, p.96]
  22. Thanks in part to indie super-producer David Andrew Sitek, they've got a vibrant sonic presence, and they write excellent songs.
  23. 'Balloons' and 'Cassius' will prompt widespread jerking movements on indie dancefloors, but it would be nice to hear them let their hearts rule their heads for a change.
  24. Foals make hard, trebly, uncomfortable, spiky, anxious, uptight, straining-to-be-different music, and for all that, it’s rather good.
  25. Antidotes is really a pleasurable record that found itself displaced by its worn-out, second-hand clothing
  26. 80
    This is an exciting debut.
  27. Antidotes is a great dance-rock record, but Foals still have a few lessons to learn before they reinvent the genre. [Spring 2008, p.76]
User Score

Generally favorable reviews- based on 54 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 9 out of 10
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 10
  3. Negative: 1 out of 10
  1. Nov 25, 2014
    A decent record throughout and if you wanted one word to describe it I would say solid. This is much more frantic stuff than the band's twoA decent record throughout and if you wanted one word to describe it I would say solid. This is much more frantic stuff than the band's two albums output since which are more in the typical indie rock/pop vein. Some will argue that this is where Foals sound at their most unique and what they have done since fails to stand out to the same extent. While I appreciate the serious rhythmic pieces on display on ANTIDOTES and the lightning in a bottle guitar work, for me their later work is more substantial and more satisfying. Full Review »
  2. Feb 19, 2011
    'Tis a pretty strong debut! Was flirting with being harsh and giving it a 7, but I think it just about deserves an 8. With a strong balance of'Tis a pretty strong debut! Was flirting with being harsh and giving it a 7, but I think it just about deserves an 8. With a strong balance of Indie anthems and soundscapey journeys like Olympic Airways and Big Big Love, it's got a good variety. There are a couple of lame ish ventures in the form of Red Socks Puge and Electric Bloom, but other than that, damn fine. Full Review »
  3. danielw.
    May 17, 2008
    Absolutely brilliant, such a good beat throughout. Best album of 2008 so far!