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Foster The People Song Pumped Up Kicks Has Unexpectedly Dark Lyrics

Tom Wood

| Last updated 

Foster The People Song Pumped Up Kicks Has Unexpectedly Dark Lyrics

If you're a fan of cheery indie pop song 'Pumped Up Kicks' by Foster the People, you might be surprised to learn that while it's definitely an infectiously catchy tune, it has a dark meaning underpinning it.

Of course, if you've paid attention to the lyrics before, you've probably noticed that singer Mark Foster - who came up with the song while working as a commercial jingle composer - says things like 'better run, better run, outrun my gun', and 'better run faster than my bullet'.

That's because the song is about gun violence, and told from the perspective of a 'psychotic' teenager.

Wow. That takes the song from zero to 60 pretty quick, doesn't it?

In a statement to CNN Entertainment, Foster explained how he'd penned the lyrics from the perspective of a troubled kid who is experiencing murderous delusions.

Obviously, that's a hot topic, particularly in the USA, where school shootings happen with alarming regularity.

Mark Foster. Credit: PA
Mark Foster. Credit: PA

In that statement, he confirmed: "I wrote 'Pumped Up Kicks' when I began to read about the growing trend in teenage mental illness.

"I wanted to understand the psychology behind it because it was foreign to me.

"It was terrifying how mental illness among youth had skyrocketed in the last decade. I was scared to see where the pattern was headed if we didn't start changing the way we were bringing up the next generation."

Foster told Rolling Stone that he wanted to 'bring awareness' to the issue of gun violence amongst young people, as well as to 'get inside the head of an isolated, psychotic kid'.

This is clearly an issue that is close to the hearts of the whole band, and bass player Cubbie Fink explained to CNN how his cousin survived the tragic Columbine High School massacre in 1999.

Credit: PA
Credit: PA

Fink told CNN: "She [his cousin] was actually in the library when everything went down, so I actually flew out to be with her the day after it happened and experienced the trauma surrounding it and saw how affected she was by it.

"She is as close as a sister, so obviously, it affected me deeply. So to be able to have a song to create a platform to talk about this stuff has been good for us."

They managed to get their message out into the world well, too.

The song performed well in the charts, as well as landing a Grammy Award nomination for Best Pop/Duo Performance.

Featured Image Credit: PA

Topics: Music, Interesting, US News, US Entertainment, Weird

Tom Wood
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