Foster the People Might Stop Performing "Pumped Up Kicks"

With its school shooting connotations, frontman Mark Foster said it might be time to retire the hit.

How often does a band's debut single reach No. 3 on the Billboard Hot 100 and get a Grammy nomination?

Almost never, which is part of what made "Pumped Up Kicks"—the first song Foster the People ever officially put out—so special when it reached the charts in 2011. When the idea of the song struck him, frontman Mark Foster was working as a commercial jingle writer, which explains the song's infectious hook. But the track also has some pretty obviously dark undertones; it's about a kid named Robert who gets his hands on a gun, which led many listeners to believe "Pumped Up Kicks" was about a school shooting.

"I think people filled in the blanks that it was about a school shooting, but I never say anything about a school in the song," Foster said in a 2010s feature for Billboard. "It's really more about this person's psyche."

But as the song grew in popularity and news of school shootings became more common, the perceived message of "Pumped Up Kicks" proved dangerous. Because of the song's connotation and ties to recent school shooters, Foster says he's debating retiring the track for good.

"it's still our most-known song," Foster said. "So it's something that I'm really wrestling with, but I'm leaning towards retiring it, because it's just too painful. Where we're at now, compared to where we were 10 years ago, is just horrific."

Foster The People - Pumped up Kicks (Official Music Video)

Though a band retiring their biggest hit might come as a surprise, "Pumped Up Kicks" bears a gruesome weight: the shooter in Parkland, Florida, reportedly often pretended to fire a gun in his home as the song played in the background, and Foster noted in the interview that a shooter in Brazil had made it his anthem.

"Pumped Up Kicks" was pulled from some radio stations after the Sandy Hook shooting, and Foster the People have already hinted at no longer including it in setlists. They opted out of performing "Pumped Up Kicks" at Life is Beautiful Festival in Las Vegas, around the anniversary of the Route 91 Harvest Music Festival that left 58 concertgoers dead in the same city. Instead, they closed their set with a theatrical cover of "Hey Jude."

"I'm proud that a three-minute song created so much conversation about something that's worth talking about, and I think that every artist dreams of making something that holds its value," Foster explained. "I really feel like I made the earth pause for a second and bend down to hear what I was saying. And I'm proud of that. But I think it might be time to retire it."


To Donald Trump: 5 Ways You're Actually a Flawless Being Doing a Beautiful, Unbelievable Job Right Now

You could resign if you want to, but then who will keep America so GD great?

With Donald Trump making a visit to Bangor, Maine today, the editorial board of the Portland Press Herald issued an op-ed calling for President Trump to resign.

The harshly critical piece entitled "To President Trump: You Should Resign Now" was framed as an open letter to the president and got straight to the point with this opening plea, "We're sorry that you decided to come to Maine, but since you are here, could you do us a favor? Resign."

In recent days even George W. Bush has been critical of President Trump's response to protests, so this new piece quickly became a trending topic on Twitter. Obviously this is another baseless attack from the lying news media—AKA lügenpresse. Considering how delicate our president's ego is—he's our special little guy—we can only hope that Donald Trump didn't see the letter; but just in case he did, it's worth writing another one to lift his spirits. So here's our best attempt—with lots of pictures and flattery to keep him reading:

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Lola Marsh’s “Echoes” Is a Haunting, Twin Peaks-esque Dance Tune

The latest track from Lola Marsh is a noirish, ghostly tune that's guaranteed to have you tapping your feet.

The duo Lola Marsh just released their new single "Echoes."

It's an enchanting, textured track, set to an intoxicating beat and tied together by singer Yael Shoshana Cohen's silky vocals.

The band, consisting of Cohen and Gil Landau, formed in 2013 in Tel Aviv, Israel. Since then, they've been crafting noirish, danceable electro-folk, blending melancholia with electric energy to create music that pays tribute to many modern groups but also possesses a sound all its own.

lil marsh echoes

"Echoes" is a mysterious tune, one that lands somewhere between the moodiness of the Twin Peaks theme song, the expansive rhythms of Tame Impala, and the country-rock-psychedelia of early Muse. Its haunting lyrics could tell the story of someone scanning the crowd for a new lover, or wandering the streets alone, remembering a long-gone ghost of the past. Either way, the song feels drawn out of late night scenes, filled with images of neon signs and faint moonlight spiraling through fog.

Though it's about getting caught up in memories of the past, "Echoes" also feels free, like something has been released or exorcized by the end of the track. The band echoed this contrast in a press release, stating,"'Echoes' is about that feeling you sometimes have when you want to disappear, but at the same time, want to be found. That scary beautiful moment just before falling asleep, when you are the most lonesome version of yourself."

The video takes notes from '70s fashion and boasts a distinctly vintage feel. It finds the two musicians dancing as multiple versions of themselves, peering at each other from across an empty loft and slowly moving closer to each other. It's a fitting visual for a song that's disorienting and multifaceted, but also catchy and ultimately certain to get listeners tapping their feet. In some ways, because it's so gloomy and catchy at the same time that it feels designed for a haunted dance party, or maybe a rager at the decaying, vine-covered mansion down the road.

"We are so excited to have new music out there!" said the band. "After we wrote 'Echoes,' we immediately started to dance, and we knew that something very good just happened. Our director Indy Hait gave us the chance to finally show off our silly dance moves for the first time."

Watch the video for "Echoes" below.

Lola Marsh - Echoes