Pop-rock band Foster the People pumped up for all ages
BY JILL MENZE June 9, 2011 11:24AM
Foster the People are (from left) bassist Cubbie Fink, drummer Mark Pontius and frontman Mark Foster.
GARDENS & VILLA
8 p.m. June 12
Lincoln Hall, 2424 N. Lincoln
Updated: September 22, 2011 12:30AM
Los Angeles’ Foster the People has only one single, “Pumped Up Kicks,” under its belt, and already frontman Mark Foster has noticed an unusual assortment of fans cropping up.
“At our shows, there are a lot of hipster kids dancing, people who dress cool. Then there are adults — like moms with their daughters; moms who are way more into it than their daughters,” he says. “We played a show in Minneapolis and there was a 60-year-old woman just going crazy.”
It’s an impressive reception for a baby band just stepping out with its debut album, “Torches” (StarTime Intl/Columbia). The release follows the success of “Pumped Up Kicks,” a top 10 hit on Billboard’s Rock Songs chart.
“‘Pumped Up Kicks’ is one of those songs that blends something really familiar with something that’s very modern,” Foster says of the broad appeal of the song, which boasts a laid-back, lo-fi ’60s vibe, a slick bass line and an undeniably catchy chorus. “It’s a song where you could lay on the couch and listen to it or you can get up and dance around the room to it.”
Columbia VP of alternative and rock promotion Mike DePippa adds, “One of the reasons it has done so well is that while it’s left of center for what traditionally has worked at many alternative radio stations, it’s not too cool for the room.”
Foster the People — the trio of Foster, drummer Mark Pontius and bassist Cubbie Fink — first played together in 2009 and started attracting attention after “Pumped Up Kicks” was posted online as a free download. Buzz about the band built up enough in time for the group’s 2010 South by Southwest debut, which piqued interest at StarTime and Columbia.
To whet fans’ appetites, Foster the People released a self-titled EP earlier this year. “‘Pumped Up Kicks’ is just the tip of the iceberg for Foster the People,” StarTime/Columbia product manager Ian Quay says. “We quickly established this band is more than a song by releasing [the EP]. Fans were hungry to hear more.”
Is the group ready for whatever its all-ages crowds may hold?
“We make music for everybody. We’re not trying to be super-niche,” Foster says. “It’s Foster the People, not Foster the Younger-Looking People.”