When “Torches” was released in May, most people had no idea who Foster the People were.
But then their songs appeared in a Payless shoe commercial, and, eventually on the soundtrack of FIFA 12.
Suddenly, the indie pop band from California began to enter the mainstream under the radar.
Their first single, “Pumped Up Kicks,” was certified platinum after topping out at 3 in the Billboard Hot 100 charts.
Is it the poppy music that draws in listeners, or is it the deeper lyrics behind them? Is it a combination of both?
If you’re not listening very closely to “Pumped up Kicks,” you might think it’s more upbeat than it really is; the music certainly makes it feel so. But the lyrics tell a completely different story.
“All the other kids with the pumped up kicks/you’d better run, better run/faster than my bullet,” sings Mark Foster in the chorus.
Typically, bands that cover youth violence do so with more serious music matching the content of the lyrics.
But the band immediately transitions into other topics, like fads in “Call It What You Want” or even more light-hearted, seemingly meaningless songs like “Don’t Stop (Color on the Walls),”
“Don’t Stop” was probably the most upbeat song on “Torches,” if only because its subject matter seemed to deal with carefree natures of children.
With the sudden boom of success, it certainly seems like Foster the People will be around for quite a while.