March 31, 2014
Diving into mass media attention with their 2010 hit single “Pumped Up Kicks,” a bizarrely, catchy tune about a school shooting, Foster The People released their second album on Mar. 14, titled Supermodel. After their success with Torches, critics anticipated a less impressive follow up album, but listeners were surprised to hear the band stay true to their indie pop sound by keeping their subtle darkness, but still incorporating different elements of inspiration into each track. Foster The People has perfected the art of creating deceivingly upbeat songs accompanied by dark and angry lyrics. Although not as morbid as a tune about the deaths of school children, lead singer Mark Foster and his band created an album that tunneled a severe hatred towards capitalist America and its ability to destroy happiness and blind the ambitious. “Are You What You Want To Be?,” the intro to Supermodel, is fast paced and binds African elements that make it a fun track, but contains lyrics like “The war machines will put out both its hands for a dollar/ It’s drinking at the table with the chrome hand guerillas/ The young ones dripping makeup lift her leg up to holla” emphasizing people’s raging greed and a society that encourages that mentality. Foster includes this topic throughout various tracks including: “Ask Yourself,” “A Beginner’s Guide To Destroying the Moon,” and “Fire Escape.” The fear of capitalism swallowing up the souls of today’s youth is prevalent throughout this album, but Foster offers rays of hope with songs such as “The Truth”, a distorted and busy track with electric hints, and deep vocals with lyrics “There is a truth, there is a light if you follow me there/I’ve been searching for directions and I’m convinced the world doesn’t know what it needs/ There is a hope for the hopeless, I can promise you that.”
Perhaps one of the most surprising characteristics of this album was the lack of love songs. Unlike their previous album, there are no melodies in this album that could instantly be identified as one of infatuation or heartbreak. “Coming of Age,” the Supermodel single, is one of the few songs that touches on the subject of a significant other with the lyrics “Well, I see you standing there like a rabid dog/ And you got those crying eyes/ Makes me wanna surrender and wrap you in my arms,” but quickly transitions into pride, regrets, and shedding into a new stage in life. An attractive song with a nice melody, funky guitar strokes, and steady drums—this song contains a busy background with echoing vocals and clapping, but all flows together perfectly, making it an obvious choice for a released single. Foster The People produced a solid album through and through, with catchy beats and a “Fight the man” attitude consistently spread throughout each track. They are set to kick off their North American tour in Apr. 2014.