Friday, 14 October 2011

Foster The People - Torches - My Take

I'm not entirely sure how the LA trio emerged into radioplay in the U.S., but for us in the UK it is likely we all share a similar story. Radio 1 is playing, it's about 2pm and Greg James, despite being a talented DJ, has little choice but to play the commercial club garbage that Radio 1 are paid to play. He announces his record of the week as Foster The People - Pumped Up Kicks enthusiastically and proceeds to play it. The gentle playful bass line is catchier than anything played all day, these are musicians playing actual instruments for a change. The chorus hook is even more addictive and the song goes down a treat.

The promising signs persuaded me to investigate their upcoming album further, and what I found was more of the same. Mark Foster and his people have a keen eye for a catchy melody, with every song on Torches, whether it be an entire chorus or a little flash of brilliance, there is evidence of this. Let's not get ahead of ourselves here though, there are people out there calling Torches unique, to which they are incorrect; Many places on Torches have been passed through before by MGMT and Vampire Weekend amongst others. Foster's style being similar to VanWyngarden's proves to be a little more than coincidental.

Let's look at some tracks then, the trio of top tier songs upon the first listens are Pumped Up Kicks, Helena Beat, and Houdini. The latter of which I believe to be the best on the album for a little while. Don't Stop, Waste and I Would Do Anything For You all have great choruses at least. Life on the Nickel and Miss You are the weaker tracks on the album with noticeably less appeal to most. That said there isn't really a 'bad' song on the album per se.

They saved the best until last though, the final track Warrant is an absolute gem which will almost certainly get no radio play. The Disney meets Brian Eno introduction is faded to swelling, flickering drums before finding an uplifting bass line, which is eventually met by an equally boosting piano, it really does put a smile on your face in the right circumstance. Mark delivers his most sincere message yet to close what I believe to be one of the albums of the year.

Thanks for reading, I'd love to hear your views on this album in the comments.


Inspire said...

They certainly did save the best for last. Magnificent track!

pv said...

That was a nice song man, def added to playlist now

kindergarten_slo said...

Warrant is the one man, right on.

Hannah :) said...

I love Foster The People, although I admit that I first came across them because of Pumped Up Kicks.

Publius said...

This is an outstanding band, what a breath of fresh air!

masteR1 said...

I like the ten tracks on the album. I hope to see them here in Portugal (Coimbra) next month.

Continue with your good work!

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