Colts Talk About Tony Allen Side Project & Upcoming Solo Albums

The Colts revealed that plans are underway for side projects and solo albums within the band – including frontman Yannis Philippakis’ long-awaited record with Fela Kuti icon Tony Allen.

  • READ MORE: Foals on the cover: ‘Life is something to be cherished and enjoyed’

The Oxford group was talking to NME for this week’s cover of Big Read to launch their upcoming seventh album, “Life Is Yours.”

Philippakis first revealed he worked on a side project with Fela drummer Kuti Allen in 2017, before saying NME of his plans to complete the record in April 2020 – just weeks before the icon’s death.

Yannis has now revealed he plans to return to Paris, where Allen was living, to complete the project later this month – as well as discussing how the drummer’s passing shaped his own creative vision during the writing “Life Is Yours”.

“As far as Tony is concerned, it was about understanding that even though he physically departed from the world, the music he made will last forever,” Philippakis said. NME. “When I’m gone, I hope the songs will last.”

He added, “There’s a chemistry to looking at music that way. It’s not just about what happens in the room; we build this body of work to be left behind. It is to realize that it is a vocation in its own right.

Foals on the cover of NME. Photography by Ed Cooke

Foals guitarist Jimmy Smith also shared that he’s written a slew of his own material – with plans to release a solo record in the not-too-distant future.

“I wrote here [in LA]. I try to compose traditional songs with my friend,” Smith said. NME. “It’s fantastic. It may sound awful, but we just sit down with two acoustic guitars and we write. I bring songs, we finish them together and it’s just very stimulating and fun. It gives me the flesh of chicken sometimes ’cause I try to sing but it feels good man I’m kinda booming.

He continued, “The reason I’m doing this isn’t to break up with the band, but just to get some of this music out. It’s really fun to do stuff outside of the band because it’s like i’m doing it for the first time i shit in my pants every time i play somebody crap because it’s so personal!

Foals (Credit: Tom Oxley)

Asked about his previously mentioned solo album about “a Russian cosmonaut lost in space”, Smith replied: “It has changed a lot. I think it will be an EP, or maybe an album with filler. I really want to do it, but I think it could wait a bit.

“I don’t think this will be my first solo offering. It might be a little strong for a first try. I have a slightly more conventional album in preparation. I worked well on that. ”

Read our full NME Big Read’s cover interview with Foals here, where the band also discuss becoming a trio, the upcoming third summer of love, no longer feeling competitive with other bands, and tackling “mass corruption.” of the British Conservative government.

Last week the band also released their new single ‘2am’, the second single after ‘Wake Me Up’ to be taken from their forthcoming album ‘Life Is Yours’, due out this summer.