This week, the band fun. released their new album “Some Nights” to much acclaim. Some of you may be familiar with fun. as their debut title, “Aim and Ignite” was released in 2009 and some of you may go back even further and remember front man, Nate Ruess’s, previous band The Format. Others may have just found out about the group recently by their song “We Are Young” which graces the airwaves and iTunes (currently number 2 most downloaded) or from the Chevy commercials.
I got into The Format back in the early 2000s when I saw them promoting their debut album, “Interventions + Lullabies”, at a local club here in Los Angeles. I immediate fell in love with their pop melodies and ability to write and compose music. After some issues with their record label, the released a second full length album entitled “Dog Problems” which was orchestrated better than their debut record and even more catchy.
Once The Format disbanded, I was pleased to hear Nate would be returning for another project with a new group and I was a fun. fan the minute I heard their songs up on MySpace prior to being officially released. fun.’s debut album, “Aim and Ignite”, leads off with the song “Be Calm” which set the tone for the whole album. The musicianship that went into that song including everything from violins to theremins truly set it apart from other pop/rock songs on the market and fun. had an identity that was unrivaled. With a mini orchestra backing the song and some amazing crescendos that highlight Nate’s vocal talent made it one of may favorite albums in the past 5 years.
The reason I am backing this review with some history is because everything that made me love The Format and fun. in the past seems to have disappeared from their new album, “Some Nights”.
In fun.’s last album, the arrangements and instrumentation tied with powerful melodies and lyrics made it a wonder why it flew under the radar. Songs like “The Gambler” were raw and appealing. Fast forward to 2012 and drum machines replace tympani drums, Nate’s amazing voice gets auto tuned and redundant lyrics replace wonderful melodies.
New comers to fun. may enjoy the album as it meets the current market but aside from “We Are Young”, “Some Nights” has little to offer fans dating back to their origin.
If you are interested in picking up the new fun. album and are a sucker for pop melodies in rock music like I am, do yourself a favor andspend your money on “Interventions + Lullabies” or “Dog Problems” by The Format or introduce yourself to fun. with their debut title “Aim and Ignite”.