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Foster the People plays ‘Pumped Up Kicks’ at ACL after declining weekend 1

Eric Webb

After excluding it from their set on the first weekend of Austin City Limits Music Festival, Foster the People played their hit “Pumped Up Kicks,” which contains lyrics about gun violence, at the fest on Friday.

“Pumped Up Kicks” is about a young man named Robert who terrorizes his school with his father’s gun.  The Los Angeles band played a cover of John Lennon’s “Love” during their first-weekend set at ACL Fest, without attributing the absence of their highest-charting single to the Oct. 1 shooting massacre at a Las Vegas music festival. That attack left 58 dead and hundreds more injured. Frontman Mark Foster dedicated “Love” to standing “in unity with our brothers and sisters who were affected by the Vegas shooting.”

The band reportedly played “Pumped Up Kicks” at their late night show at Stubb’s on Friday.

Foster the People had previously declined to play the song at a North Carolina show in the wake of the Las Vegas attack, though they played in San Antonio on Oct. 6, the day before their first ACL 2017 appearance.