The pressure of creating a superb sophomore album has often proved daunting for many bands, especially if their debut sold over a million copies. Foster The People did just that with their first record, Torches, which was aided by the hit single, “Pumped Up Kicks.” With success like they’ve had, bands have often created less than subpar material for their next record after becoming too focused on recreating what made them a success in the first place. While Supermodel is most definitely a Foster The People record, the band did not try to replicate what they did on Torches.
Supermodel builds on the band’s strengths by crafting even better melodies than before, with better production, that combines to form a stronger overall album than its predecessor. Songs like “Coming of Age” and “Best Friend” are both solid, but they sound nothing alike – besides the eccentric vocals of Mark Foster and ludic synths. Sonically, this record is more playful than the band’s previous release, but has even more serious moments as well, which makes for a good balance.
At times it can be hard to take the band serious because of their playful sound, but Foster wrote some of his best lyrics on this record. On “Ask Yourself,” he says, “I’ve found the more I want, the less I’ve got. Is this the life you’ve been waiting for? Are you hoping that you’ll be where you want with a little more?”
In the latter part of the record, the songs are not quite as galumptious as early on. However, for the most part, Supermodel is a solid piece of art from a band that does not seem to care what the latest trend happens to be in the music industry. Foster The People created the record they wanted to, and the result is a solid album that should solidify the band as more than just a one-hit-wonder.
Review by Jonathan Kemp