Album: Everything Not Saved Will Be Lost (2019)
Charted: 70
  • songfacts ®
  • Lyrics
  • This song conjures the imagery of a dystopian future, inspired by tech billionaires who are buying bunkers in New Zealand.

    Now the sea eats the sky
    But they say it's a lie
    And there's no birds left to fly
    We'll hide out

    Vocalist Yannis Philippakis told Q magazine: "All the post-millennial dread that everybody's swimming in at the moment is very much present."
  • Philippakis explained to NME that the song paints "a visual picture with words about the state of where we're at, and all the preoccupations that we have. The environment being one, also the state of surveillance and all of the ways that we attached to the outside world. There isn't any privacy."

    The singer added that he came up with the song after fantasizing about living underground. "It's set in this warped and surreal landscape," Philippakis said. "It's not necessarily a dark place, but you can take refuge from the outside world with the hope that you could come above ground at some point."
  • The song's music clip was filmed by director Albert Moya in minus 10 degree temperatures in Budapest. It stars English actor Isaac Hempstead Wright (Game Of Thrones) and French actress Christa Théret (Renoir). Philippakis said: "We wanted to make a video that went with the song that was like, a set of surreal vignettes."
  • The song started off as a jam between bassist Edwin Congreave and drummer Jack Bevan before their bandmates joined in and got locked into the groove. Philippakis explained that they were "enjoying playing something that was slow and what we would refer to as a chugger." The band are huge fans of Talk Talk, and they felt like it had the of energy of their song "Life's What You Make It."
  • Once they'd come up with the instrumentation, Philippakis had a "clear visual picture" of what the lyrics should be about. The singer explained to Consequence of Sound that he was drawn to write about "this view of humanity being able to live in a surreal way underground in bunkers, an ant colony type situation."

    Philippakis added he incorporated a playful element "of the flowers growing upside down" to prevent it being "super bleak" and he was attracted to this "surreal image of a subterranean world that was full of labyrinths and staircases. Almost like the underworld, or something from the Greek myths."

    The singer concluded: "There's obviously a reason people are hiding out underground, and it's because there's hostile or threatening forces above ground."
  • The song was released as the lead single from Everything Not Saved Will Be Lost. Philippakis explained that part of the reason The Foals put this track out first is many of the different narrative themes that are included on the record can be heard on this one song. He explained:

    "The opening lines have to do with climate change and climate change deniers, and then there's surveillance aspects later on in the song. Also, when I think about the record, I think about labyrinths and mazes and I feel like they're symbolic of the confusion of the time and how it's difficult to find a rational way through. So, all of that was basically swirling around in the song for me."
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