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Mercury Prize 2013 – Foals Gear

Mercury Prize 2013 – Foals Gear

The Mercury Prize 2013 nominees are in – in anticipation, we take a look at some of nominees Foals gear

Mercury Prize 2013 – Some Of Foals Gear

It’s that time of year again, and the Mercury Prize 2013 nominees are in. Unlike last year, there’s a real mix of popular choices, with less in the way of obscure nominees. The full list is…

  • David Bowie – ‘The Next Day’
  • Arctic Monkeys – ‘AM’
  • Jake Bugg – ‘Jake Bugg’
  • Foals – ‘Holy Fire’
  • James Blake – ‘Overgrown’
  • Disclosure – ‘Settle’
  • Jon Hopkins – ‘Immunity’
  • Rudimental – ‘Home’
  • Laura Mvula – ‘Sing To The Moon’
  • Laura Marling – ‘Once I Was An Eagle’
  • Villagers – ‘Awayland’
  • Savages – ‘Silence Yourself’

In anticipation of the winner being chosen, we take a look at some of the tools these artists use to create their sound.

Here, we take a mini-tour of some of Foals gear.

Mercury Prize 2013 – Some Of Foals Gear - Holy Fire


Foals unique, rhythmically complex sound has been described as ‘math rock’, ‘indie’ and even ‘techno’ over the years- all labels the band is far from being fond of. Nominated album ‘Holy Fire’ marks a step in another direction, cementing Foals’ position as one of the most progressive bands around, and also one of the most difficult to categorise…

In terms of guitars, the most unusual would be Yannis’s Travis Bean guitars. These guitars were built in the ‘70s, by (you guessed it) Travis Bean, in partnership with Gary Kramer (of Kramer Guitars). Unusually, they feature an aluminium thru-neck design.

Yannis plays two TB1000S models (natural and black) and a black TB500.

Some Of Foals Gear - Fender Jazzmaster

Guitarist Jimmy Smith’s taste has changed over the years. Initially a fan of Fender Telecasters, he then switched to a Les Paul Junior Special. For ‘Holy Fire’, however, he has been seen playing a Fender Jazzmaster.

Though it was first pitched as a mellower alternative to the Strat, the P90s are more than capable of some edgy ‘bark’ when overdriven, and have a tendency to feedback at high gain, which can make them a very lively guitar when played at high volume…


Some of Foals Gear- EHX Holy Grail Nano

Though the band’s sound is generally pretty clean, there are some very distinctive, processed guitar sounds in the mix. As you might expect, this is due to some tasty guitar effects amongst the catalogue of Foals gear.

Yannis is known to use a Boss DD-3 delay, Boss RV-6 reverb, and EHX Nano Holy Grail. He also has an ultra-rare Klon Centaur overdrive…

Vox AC30 C2 Guitar Amp

Jimmy also uses a DD series delay, alongside a Line 6 DL4 delay, and an EHX POG 2. Both players appear to use classic, Boss TU tuner pedals.

According to interviews, Jimmy prefers to keep things clean when it comes to amp tone. His tool of choice is typically a Vox AC30.

Stay posted for more gear profiles of the Mercury Prize nominees…

About The Author


Joe is a contributor for the Dawsons Music blog. Specialising in product reviews and crafting content to help and inspire musicians of all musical backgrounds.