Following their debut album featuring hit song “Pumped Up Kicks” a lot of people marked Foster the People as a one hit wonder band who never made more than two or three good songs. I’ve practically grown up alongside Foster the People, and I can tell you first hand that they are far from a one hit wonder. Here are my top 5 Foster the People songs in order:
5. Pumped Up Kicks
Upon its release, Pumped Up Kicks was an underproduced, poorly mixed demo track for Foster the People’s debut album. To the band's disbelief, it became a global hit, and joined the small club of the few songs that would be remembered for decades to come by the generation it impacted. Its unsuspecting happy instrumental mixed with gruesome lyrics caught most people by surprise, which only added to the appeal. Its impact transcended the music world, and actually brought on more awareness of the issue of school shootings. Objectively, it’s definitely their best but it only makes number five for me personally.
Opening with an extremely upbeat drum fill, Foster the People throws you into one of the catchiest synth pop songs in their discography. The song slowly builds until the climax, where the lyrics devolve into chanting “focus on your ability”. Taking into consideration the way Harry Houdini died, it is a chilling song indeed.
3. Lotus Eater
Lotus Eater has a similarity with Pumped Up Kicks with it’s clashing emotional styles, but in a slightly different way. The song switches between a happy, upbeat verse structure and a much more violent, biting chorus the whole time. It’s a very interesting song structure and the group pulls it off quite well.
2. Static Space Lover
This song makes you feel like you should have no care in the world for anything, and just enjoy life. The song also takes on a more acoustic feel, which I personally like more than the group’s other more electronic works.
Nevermind is another acoustic take on the typical Foster the People formula, with an incredibly catchy main riff and calming vocals. Similar to Static Space Lover, it also feels very carefree, and it is my favorite Foster the People song and one of my favorite songs ever.
After given the incredible opportunity to interview the artist TOBI, it feels like I have a very good look into who he is; not only as a singer but as a person.
He talked a lot about his childhood, his interests, and what his music means to him. However, one of the most interesting parts of this artist is his outlook on life. Most influential artists of our time don’t get where they are without something to say. If you look at Childish Gambino, his music is so popular because of the meaning behind his lyrics, especially “This Is America” where he talks about the corruptness and evil in our society. Although this artist does have a similar sound to Childish Gambino, TOBI talks more about being a positive influence in people’s lives. He likes to think of himself as an idealist and pictures a brighter future for future generations. He wants to reach people that have similar views and inspire people to be positive influences on other people. He wants to be relatable, someone who is a light in their community.
TOBI moved to Canada when he was 8 years old from his home in Nigeria. This move was a culture shock for TOBI, and he had a lot of trouble adjusting. When asked how he coped with this change, he referred to his father. His father told him when he was a kid that the best way to cope with this change was to take the best parts of who he was in Nigeria and add that to the best parts of who he is in Canada. He attributes a lot of his music to this change in culture and even goes so far as to say that this difficult experience helped him grow. He explained that a lot of his music is about “transforming painful experiences into your own growth”, specifically the song “Made Me Everything”, which is a motto he plans to live by.
If TOBI’s positive outlook on life hasn’t convinced you to listen to this inspiring artist, maybe his interests will. Are there any Cowboy fans reading this? Yeah, you read that correctly, TOBI is a Cowboys fan. He also is a huge Celine Dion fan and talked a lot about how she impacted his music. As for his dream collab, he said that it would have to be Kendrick Lamar, especially because he believed his voice would mix very well with Kendrick Lamar’s sound. This artist is bound to go to great lengths and plans to make a difference while paving his road to fame. Make sure to check out the new artist TOBI, and take a page out of his book and be a light in your community. TOBI is counting on you to be that positive change for our future.
Hey there fans of WLTL, Keely here! I’m one of the music managers here at the station. I love listening to and reviewing new music to put into our playlist. I find a lot of new music that I enjoy, and I hope that you enjoy too. This week at WLTL we introduce Pink Siifu and Fly Anakin to our rotation with their new Album “FlySiifu’s”!
Pinky Siifu and Fly Anakin are two rappers, both students of J Dilla. This is apparent in their new album, with witty skits sprinkled throughout and lyrical raps along with lot of samples, this album can be described as Lo-Fi rap. The hushed and existential rapping of Pink Siifu perfectly compliments the slick flow of Fly Anakin.
My favorite track off the album has to be “Mind Right” featuring Liv.e. With a ghostly piano sample and background vocals, it gives off almost a nostalgic feeling. This is definitely a song to look out for when you tune into WLTL.
Listen to “FlySiifu’s”, you might learn something! Or Tune into WLTL to hear them on air!
Hey WLTL listeners! It’s Dailey here, and I’m back this week with some wonderful news. The Postal Service, one of my favorite bands, has come out with a 15 track album composed of live performances of all of their greatest songs. After having listened to ‘The District Sleeps Alone Tonight’ and ‘We Will Become Silhouettes’ so many times this year, being able to hear them live in this album was awesome. With the pandemic being a thing, we’re all pretty live music starved...so I did really appreciate this addition to the WLTL collection.
The Postal Service is a three man show, with lead singer Ben Gibbard, backing vocalist Jenny Lewis, and producer Jimmy Trobello (better known as Dntl to some). Their latest album ‘Everything Has Changed’ was recorded live in 2013 at the Greek Theatre in California. Videos from their reunion tour that year are up on the band’s YouTube Channel.
I absolutely love The Postal Service. I started listening to their song, ‘Nothing Better’ back in seventh grade...I didn’t listen to much else around that time though. Sometime during freshman year a good friend of mine was very into them, and I recognized the name from my old middle school playlist. I’d missed out on a whole lot. The Postal Service is one of my favorite bands- they have this very nostalgic, unearthly sound for me. Many of their tracks feel just like dreaming. Those early mornings before the rest of the world wakes up, when you’re kind of basking in how alone you can feel. For me, they’ve always sounded strangely familiar and quite comforting. I strongly encourage you to give them a listen!!! And absolutely check out these live tracks too, it’s super fun to hear them perform even though you can’t actually be there to witness it.
Hello readers and fans of WLTL! This week, I, Natalia Madrigal, would like to introduce you to one of my favorite bands: Fleet Foxes; and break down their newest album Shore.
Fleet Foxes are an accomplished Seattle-based indie folk band formed in 2006. More popularly known for their 2008 hit (and one of my all time favorite songs) “White Winter Hymnal” off their self-titled album, they have reinvented themselves after drummer Joshua Tillman (aka Father John Misty), left the group in 2012. After a six-year hiatus, the folk band led by guitar player and singer Robin Peckold, dove back in by releasing their 2017 album, Crack-Up, about Pecknold's existential crises and feelings of alienation as he tries to work through it while occasionally referencing and alluding back to their debut self-titled album.
Now, with their newest album Shore abruptly released on this past autumnal equinox, Fleet Foxes come to an understanding that while they are not necessarily a very old group, they are no longer the trend-setters. Despite this, they are happy and at peace with the idea of aging and with their legacy. Peckold admitted, “I see ‘Shore’ as a place of safety on the edge of something uncertain … tempted by the adventure of the unknown at the same time you are relishing the comfort of the stable ground beneath you. This was the mindset I found, the fuel I found, for making this album.”
They have transformed the anxiety and worry prominent in Crack-Up, into gratitude and acceptance. Instead of abandoning their major-key melodies and his dreamy vocals, Peckold actually leans into the joyfulness on songs like “Sunblind” and “Young Man’s Game”.
Facing the inevitability of aging and fading is quite worrisome for many, but in the words of Robin Peckold, “I could worry through each night/ Find something unique to say/ I could pass as erudite/ But it's a young man's game.”
This week I was super excited to see one of my favorite artists all over the high school and college radio charts- Gus Dapperton! I’ve been listening to his music since freshman year, so you can imagine how hyped I was to listen to his newest album, Orca, that he released just last month.
Gus has such a wonderful sound. His fun indie-pop tracks have always been a favorite of mine- not to mention his knack for weird and wonderful lyricism. There has been this sort of dreamlike, whimsical feel to his music in previous, but Gus took a different approach with Orca. In his own words, “It’s about self-reflection,” which is a side of Gus we haven’t really gotten to know before.
Orca is, quite largely, Gus recounting the way he felt throughout his high school years as he has begun to feel similarly again at such a wild time in his life. I was surprised at how much these tracks resonated with me. Of course I’ve always enjoyed his music, but it hasn’t ever been something I could understand lyrically. Tracks such as Medicine and Post Humorous felt very real to me.
Still, maybe some slow, sad music about emotional vulnerability isn’t your speed. Don’t worry though, these are some of my favorites in terms of sound as well. His voice! It came through incredibly on this album- the riffs and the licks are so much fun, and I don’t think I’ve heard him go this hard on the vocals before. The feeling in his voice was poignant in the greatest way- this album truly isn’t something to pass up!
Hey there fans of WLTL! My name is Keely Marolt, I’m a Junior at LT, and I’m one of the music directors here at the station. I love listening to new music and talking about music with other people, so I’ve been enjoying my time as a manager so far. This week, I thought I’d introduce an artist that I believe is on the rise, Eyedress!
Eyedress is a shoe-gaze, dream pop artist from the Philippines, his real name is Idris Vicuña. He peaked my interest a few months prior to me starting management, the song “Jealous” is the first song I heard by him, and I fell in love with it. The harsh minor chords with the simple yet melancholy lyrics is what really drove me to love this song. As the year started I was introduced to his 2017 album “Manila Ice” about his struggle with life and love in the Philippines.
To go along with the awesome cover art, “Manilla Ice” includes many great songs like “Separation Anxiety” and “Big shoes” which uses the same harsh chords and melancholy lyrics as the song “Jealous”. It truly is an introspective album that really lets the listener get a hold of the the feelings Vicuña is trying to convey.
Give Eyedress a listen, You won’t be sorry! Or tune in to 88.1 to hear him on air!
If you’re a regular reader on our website, you might not recognize my name just yet- I’m Dailey, and I’m a Junior at LT this year. I’ve been loving my time as a Music Director so far...listening to new artists is one of my favorite things to do. This week, I’d like to introduce you all to a band I came upon the other day!
Cedarsmoke caught my ear pretty much instantly with one of their newest songs, Local Anaesthetic from their latest EP, Everything Is The Worst. I’m typically drawn to indie-rock with this sort of rich, rusted sound they’ve encapsulated so well overall. There’s even a little folk in there, maybe a hint of grunge? Sounds like it’d be in the soundtrack to my coming of age movie.
Another favorite of mine has to be Pure Heroin. I love a good piano riff, and this song certainly does not disappoint- especially when the upbeat, indie-pop chorus kicks in. No, I do not know anyone who’d been found dead by a five-inch blade in a Chelsea hotel...but yeah you bet I sing that part in the car like I do.
To conclude for this week…STREAM CEDARSMOKE! Or tune in to WLTL to hear ‘em on our radio waves.
Witness Band Go From Anger and Grief to finding Relief and Acceptance
Touché Amoré is an American post/melodic hardcore band formed in 2007. The Burbank-based group have become known as one of the most energetic acts in hardcore credited by their 2013 album ‘Is Survived By’ reaching the top half of the Billboard 200. Since then, they’ve released two more albums titled ‘Stage Four’ and ‘Dead Horse X’ that have covered topics such as angst, cancer, and death inspired by lead singer, Jeremy Bolms’, mother’s death from breast cancer.
They will be releasing their 5th studio album, ‘Lament’ on October 9th, 2020. Their two new singles ‘Limelight’ and ‘I’ll Be Your Host’ demonstrate them finding the light at the end of the tunnel after a decade of darkness. Lament is an example of hope, taking on topics such as fragility, empathy, and politics.
The Internet is a seemingly never-ending place. No matter what you’re looking for or what you’re creating, there will always be some sort of niche you’ll fit yourself into. This has been the same for artists or YouTube personalities- each creator finds their genre, no matter how obscure.
However, the rise of a YouTube creator known as ThatPoppy brought many to question the true nature and inclusivity of the Internet.
In 2015, Poppy released her first YouTube video in collaboration with director Titanic Sinclair. The video, titled Poppy Eats Cotton Candy went exactly how it sounds. Framed by a stiff white backdrop, the bleach blonde picked away at the pale pink fluff, only shifting her gaze to the camera to stick her tongue out after she had finished.
This was only the beginning of what would become one of the Internet’s biggest mysteries- What is Poppy? With each video came another flurry of questions, some of the most viewed being I’m Poppy (which was simply multiple shots of the singer repeating the phrase “I’m Poppy” for ten minutes), am I okay? and I am Not in a Cult. She rarely ever agreed to interviews, and even when she did, the singer never broke character, referring to herself only in the third person and maintaining an unsettlingly sweet, monotone persona.. Her former self had been wiped from the Internet, leaving little trace of the brunette from Nashville, known as Moriah Pereira.
Poppy released her first single in 2017. I’m Poppy has an infectiously catchy, hyperpop sound- it set the precedent for her first album which followed the next year. Poppy.Computer is dripping in pastels, each song fitting into Poppy’s artificial internet-personality theme. While the album was pretty much completely bright, techno-esque, and fun, there was a hint of grunge slipped into the fourth track, My Microphone.
This rock sound followed Poppy into her next release, Am I a Girl?, which came later in the same year. The album took a darker turn, with many tracks making comments on the nature of fame and the music industry, while retaining the same robotic-pop noise.
This was Poppy’s final release in cohorts with director Titanic Sinclair. It had come to light that the two had been involved, and their relationship had turned toxic. After much speculation and digging by fans, Poppy finally released a statement in late December of last year. She confirmed that Sinclair had in fact been manipulative and emotionally abusive in the past, but she had stayed by his side for so long as she believed he was “misunderstood” by most.
Poppy’s true first album as her own artist was released in January of this year. I Disagree is Poppy’s detachment from her former persona- if she was previously perceived to be a robot, one could describe this album as her statement of sentience. “I disagree” can be interpreted as a frightening thing for a robot to say. This album is violent- a heavy metal sound occasionally mixed with her signature smooth techno-pop noise. Poppy’s voice, typically light and monotone for the better part of her career, comes through with a new sense of emotion that is heard little if at all in her previous music.
Watching Poppy grow for the past five years has been an incredible experience for long-term fans, as well as anyone else who’s taken the time to learn her story. The singer has redefined herself in darker colors, and we’re loving her new sound.