Friday, November 16, 2012
Albums2010 #58: Some Nights
I went with the Missus and the now ex-Roomie to see Fun. down at the Blue Moose Tap House in oh, I want to say it was April now and it ranks as one of the most amazing concert experiences of my life so far. The place was packed and lead singer Nate Reuss was playing for his Grandma (he revealed to the crowd he's actually from Iowa City- so he had family to play for) and I'd like to think he brought a little extra oomph to the stage that night because the atmosphere was so electric, you could practically feel it crackle in the air.
The sister-in-law has had a long standing love affair with Reuss' former band The Format, so I was familiar with some of his work and you can taste The Format in Fun.- especially in the lyrics I think. In the wake of the dissolution of The Format, Reuss teamed up with Andrew Dost and Jack Antonoff of Anathallo and Steel Train to form Fun. After a promising debut album, Aim and Ignite (personal faves from that one: The Gambler, At Least I'm Not As Sad As I Used To Be, Barlights, All The Pretty Girls, Benson and Hedges... amongst others) they seriously broke through with their sophomore album Some Nights.
I'm going to be slightly daring here and say that the breakout single from this album, 'We Are Young' is in fact, not the best part of this album. That honor, I think goes to the titular single 'Some Nights' but the rest of the album is another remarkably complete package of songs that, if the mood strikes you, you can hit play on and just sit back, relax and enjoy the ride.
The comparisons to Queen are almost immediately obvious. The harmonization blends perfectly and elements recall Freddie Mercury and company at their hey day but what really I think makes Fun. more than average pop music is their lyrics. Melancholy and self-mocking, self-depricating without plunging into hipster irony, they make listening to Fun's music enjoyable and the quality is evident.
Leaving aside 'We Are Young' and 'Some Nights' the album has some gems buried in it that are worth checking out. 'All Alone', 'It Gets Better' and 'One Foot' are all excellent as is most of the rest of the album. Personally, I think we can expect more great things from this band in the future. They can't be pigeon-holed as top 40 radio pop anymore that they can be labelled as indy or alternative- the lack of a definition might be seen as a negative to a lot of people but I think it enables Fun. to have the freedom to develop their sound more. It's bombastic in parts, melancholy and introspective in others and hopefully here to stay for a long time to come.
Overall: This is an excellent album. I can't really say much more than that... if you like good lyrics, good music and a good time, check Fun. out. You won't regret it.