Formed in Los Angeles in 2009 by multi-instrumentalist singer/songwriter Mark Foster, indie rock trio Foster the People make melodic, atmospheric, dance-oriented pop. Foster initially began the project alone, but before long he added long-term friend Cubbie Fink on bass and drummer Mark Pontius to complete the lineup. The following year, their single "Pumped Up Kicks" was posted on their website, picking up considerable buzz online and significant airplay on KROQ, alongside packed performances at the Texas musical festival SXSW. This inevitably attracted the attention of major labels, and eventually the band signed to Columbia imprint Startime International. Early in 2011 they released a self-titled EP that featured "Pumped Up Kicks," and with the major-label support, the song became a worldwide hit.
Torches, which was produced mainly by Greg Kurstin (Kelly Clarkson, Ellie Goulding), with Paul Epworth (Adele, Friendly Fires) also contributing to a handful of tracks. They then embarked on tours across North America and Europe to support its release. In 2012 they took home the Billboard Music Awards' Top Rock Song accolade, and were nominated for a host of other honors, including Grammy, BRIT, NME, and Teen Choice awards.
Foster the People began writing material for their sophomore record while on tour, and they laid tracks down on a portable setup before they entered the studio. Their sophomore album, the Paul Epworth-produced Supermodel, was released in March 2014. The album received middling reviews, but performed better than its predecessor, reaching number three on the U.S. album chart. Two singles, "Coming of Age" and "Best Friend," hit the Top Ten of the alternative chart. The following year, Fink left the band, with the rest of Foster the People issuing the single "The Unforeseeable Fate of Mr. Jones" that December.
Sacred Hearts Club, which found them exploring a funky, electronic, '80s-style R&B vibe. Produced by Foster and keyboardist Isom Innis along with Josh Abraham, Lars Stalfors, and Oligee, the album featured the singles "Loyal Like Sid & Nancy" and "Sit Next to Me," the latter of which received the remix treatment in 2018 via the Grammy-winning R&B/hip-hop/dance production team the Stereotypes. 2018 also saw the release of the upbeat, one-off single "Worst Nites."