Off the Beaten Track – An insight into fun. and Foster the People

by Colleen Fox, entertainment editor

During the past year, fun. and Foster the People have been mainly “One Hit Wonders.” fun.’s popular song, “We Are Young,” became the new tune of 2012 after the song made its debut on Glee. Foster the People’s song, “Pumped Up Kicks,” was one of the hottest summer tracks of 2011. These bands may be thought of as “One Hit Wonders”, but there is a whole nother world on the rest of their albums.

fun. is an indie rock band based here in, New York City, and was formed by Nate Ruess after his own band broke up. fun. has had two albums so far, Aim and Ignite (2009) and Some Nights (2012). While their most popular songs, “We Are Young” and, newly debuting on the billboard chart, “Some Nights,” may be playing on Z100, there is a completely different playing field when you come to their other songs.

“Be Calm” is a song off their older album that has a tempo that is consistent with how people feel while anxiety may be taking over, as well as how they feel when they’re calmer. As the song lyrics tell about all different anxieties and hardships in life, the tempo of the song speeds up, and as the lyrics become calmer, the tempo slows down.

Senior Michelle Rivera agrees, “The words seem to go well with the beat of the music because as the lyrics go from sad to like paranoid, the tempo does the exact same thing. It also cartoonish, sort of like the Nightmare Before Christmas.”

Similar to “Be Calm,” “Carry On” off of fun.’s album Some Nights basically tells listeners to carry on when bad things happen in their life. This song, the high pitched vocals that Nate Ruess can bring to the table are heard, as well as the incredible instrumental with the guitar solos.

Foster the People is a indie pop band which was formed in Los Angeles in 2009. It was formed by lead vocalist Mark Foster and was signed after their popular song, “Pumped Up Kicks” became a viral sensation. “Pumped Up Kicks” may continuously get stuck in one’s head, but take a breath of fresh air and listen to their other catchy songs.

“Call It What You Want” is about not conforming to today’s society, rather being who one wants to be. It’s about how society today is incredibly judgemental, however there are so many songs out there that convey that same message. The lyrics of the song are able to make this song so much different. Though it has the repetitive “call it what you want” throughout the song, Foster the People has a way of conveying their message with a different type of diction.

“I really like the rhythm of the song; it makes me want to stand up and dance! The lyrics tells you can do whatever you want and don’t think what other people think,” sophmore Ysbel Hernandez said.

“Helena Beat” has beautiful lyrics, that  talk about how life gets hard after sipping the poison. The instrumentals of the song, from the keyboard to the guitars, to the slight drum rhythm heard in the background pulls this song together.

fun. and Foster the People may both have the similar sounds that indie groups bring to the table, but the meanings behind their songs also show a connection between their songs. The two bands are Off the Beaten Track: they don’t sing of love, but rather about hard times in life getting better.

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