fun. is an American indie pop band based in New York City that was formed by Nate Ruess, formerly of The Format. After the 2008 breakup of The Format, Ruess then formed fun. with Andrew Dost of Anathallo and Jack Antonoff of Steel Train. fun. has released two albums, their debut Aim and Ignite in 2009 and their latest Some Nights in February 2012.The band's popularity exploded in 2012 after their departure fromBaroque Pop with their hit singles "We Are Young" and "Some Nights", the latter even appearing in the trailer for Wreck-It Ralph. The album Some Nights has been critically acclaimed (as wasAim And Ignite) with Nate's wide vocal range and harmonies as well as its unique combination of classic rock and modern hip hop influences. They have a strong knack for Lyrical Dissonance, and Nate has been compared to Freddie Mercury several times in terms of vocal flexibility. They are poppy, upbeat, yet dark, emotional, clever, funny, creative, and most of all fun.Expect lots of Lyrical Dissonance, massive vocal harmonies, dynamics, and Ear Worms.
Album Title Drop: "So we Aim and Ignite..." from "Light A Roman Candle With Me."
A special edition of Some Nights came with a shirt with the lyrics of the album on it, highlighting every time the title is dropped.
Arc Words: 'Stars' recurs throughout Some Nights, as does the titular phrase. Appropriately enough, the album opens with a song called "Some Nights" and ends with a song called "Stars" (each of which contains references to the other).
Auto-Tune: Lots of it, but it's only used for effect. A bit of a Base Breaker for the band, since Nate really doesn't need it.
Call Back: In several fun. songs ("Take Your Time (Coming Home)", "Some Nights" and "Why Am I The One?") "the desert" and "the sun" are used to refer to Arizona and California, respectively. This is a callback to The Format's "On Your Porch".
A callback to two songs from fun.'s debut album is present in the song "Stars", with the line "Some nights I rule the world with "Barlights" and "Pretty Girls"." The titles are even in quotations in the lyrics, so it's a pretty obvious reference.
Aim And Ignite has a song called "I Wanna Be The One." Later on Some Nights there's a song called "Why Am I The One?"
"Take Your Time (Coming Home)" also contains the lyric "I'm through with causing a scene," a reference to The Format's "The First Single". Nate Ruess seems to do this a lot.
The beginning of "Stars" seems to be a live recording of the bridge of "Some Nights."
A distorted segment of the bridge of "Some Nights" (containing the lyrics "when I see stars that's all they are/when I hear songs they sound like a swan") is looped throughout the outro of "Why Am I the One?"
Celebrity Is Overrated/Lonely at the Top: "Stars." Actually, almost all of the Some Nights album deals with loneliness in every song. There's gratitude for their success in there as well, though, which keeps it from being whiny or Wangsty.
Concept Album: Some Nights seems to be about the loneliness and misery of perpetual touring with little reward, the singer's regrets of leaving behind a possible Love Interest and missing everyone from his childhood, grieving his mother, and raging at his father.
Bittersweet Ending: In "Stars," the band finally makes it to the top and while there's still a conflicted attitude in the lyrics, they're mostly positive. But as the song goes on, the tone gets darker and darker and Ruess's voice is more and more heavily distorted to match, the implication being that celebrity has not brought him the happiness he thought it would.
Loudness War: Zig-Zagged. "It Gets Better" seems to invoke it by brickwalling the whole time, and the album "Some Nights" clips and brickwalls in a few places, but it's still a very dynamic album and a good few tracks never even max out at all. "Some Nights (Intro)", "Why Am I The One", and "Carry On" avert it gloriously.
Lyrical Dissonance: It's present in a lot of fun. songs as well as songs from The Format, Ruess' old band.
To wit, the verse in "We Are Young" reveals that this is about a guy and his date at a bar, whose friends have abandoned them to get high and they have lost a cell phone and the date's going to get drunk to forget about how the guy beat her but all's well because toniiiiiiight, we are young.
"Some Nights" seems to be about a ghost of some sort and grief, and the narrator's sister being left with a child by some no-good man, but the drum line is so dancey.
Also "Carry On" starts like a quiet piano ballad but shifts into a more rock-anthem sound after the first chorus.
Stylistic Suck: "It Gets Better" seems to be this (unlike the rest of the album, it's heavily brickwalled and Nate's vocals are deliberately unrefined, heavily Autotuned, and distorted), as well as the backing instrumental to "One Foot" (Which just consists of one short loop of a marching band over and over).