FOSTE R TH E PEO PLE “SU PE R MOD E L” Foster the People had been teasing their new LP for weeks early on in the year, finally releasing Supermodel, the band’s second album, on March 18th on Columbia Records. The 12-track effort, led by the new single “Coming of Age,” which is built on bright guitar riffs, layered vocals and snappy handclaps. Foster the People broke out with their debut LP, 2011’s Torches, and its ubiquitous single “Pumped Up Kicks.” In the wake of that success, frontman Mark Foster composed the score for Alejandro Monteverde’s film Little Boy, which ended up inspiring the “more orchestral” direction of Supermodel. “Definitely working on the film and going to Prague and recording the orchestra, which I’d never done before – I’d never written a piece and then watched 50 musicians bring it to life – it’s one of the most powerful things I’ve ever been a part of, to see an orchestra construct an original piece of music,” Foster states. He also notes the influence of “North and West Africa,” particularly on opener “Are You What You Wanna Be,” which features a “6/8 African shuffle rhythm in the verse.” Overall, he says the album was intended to be “more organic and human, because the first record was so electronic and synthetic.” “It’ll be interesting,” he says. “It’s not the record that people are gonna expect us to release second. It’s definitely an evolution for us, and it’s a more polarizing record for us, so I’m excited to see how it’s received, for better or worse.”
WES AN D E R S ON “TH E G R AN D B U DAPEST HOTE L” Wes Anderson doesn’t so much direct movies as build them from scratch, brick by colorful brick. Sweating the details. All of them, all the time, to an extent that can be maddening. He’s an architect of whimsy, his brain an overstuffed filing cabinet of elaborate blueprints. But not in “The Grand Budapest Hotel,” where the writer-director’s familiar style blends with a group of unexpected factors to create a magnificently cockeyed entertainment. Anderson’s latest invention, The Grand Budapest Hotel, may be his most meticulously realized, beginning with the towering, fictional building for which it’s named. From the outside, this luxury establishment—situated in a scenic corner of an imaginary Eastern European country—resembles nothing so much as a giant, frosted birthday cake, delectable enough to devour. On the inside, it’s a museum of invented history, every room dressed with so much Andersonian stuff that it could inspire a whole series of spinoffs. Were the merit of the man’s films determined solely by the amount of bric-a-brac they contain, this new one would surely rank first in his illustrious filmography. With credits including “Moonrise Kingdom,” “The Darjeeling Limited” and the stop-motion animation “Fantastic Mr. Fox,” Anderson works so assiduously to create obsessively detailed on-screen worlds that the effect has sometimes been hermetic, even stifling. “The Grand Budapest,” however, is anything but. Delighting in all manner of old movie tropes, from elaborate chases to hairs-breadth escapes to Victorian plot devices like “the second copy of the second will,” this playful yet poignant film, anchored by a knockout performance by Ralph Fiennes, tells the Boys’ Own Adventure yarn of how a celebrated hotel concierge and a lowly lobby boy team up to have the adventure 25 of a lifetime.