Fun. capped off an incredible year with a sold-out hometown show at Radio City Music Hall Saturday night that showed how far the New York trio has come.
It was last year's Super Bowl that launched the band's hit “We Are Young” into the iTunes stratosphere after it was used in a Chevy commercial during the game. And now Fun. goes into Grammy night next Sunday with six nominations, including all top four categories -- album, record, and song of the year, as well as best new artist.
However, considering the wild heroes' welcome they received Saturday, Fun. has already won.
It's no accident that singer Nate Ruess often pumps his fists in the air like he's leading the crowd to storm The Bastille. Fun.'s “Some Nights” album features one ambitious anthem after another, crafting multigenre sing-alongs around the themes of celebration and support.
In concert, Fun. is augmented not just by an impressive band, which includes Long Island's Will Noon (of Straylight Run fame) on drums, but by the fans filling the room.
During the band's current single “Carry On,” the singing and screaming was so loud, it seemed like Radio City was about to burst. The crowd involvement is only one of the band's quantum leaps forward this year.
After all, the difference between the masterful, experimental “One Foot” -- which combines hip-hop rhythms, rock guitar, tinkling piano and Ruess' soaring, supportive vocals -- and “All the Pretty Girls,” a simple rocker that despite Jack Antonoff's cool guitar solos, has shades of REO Speedwagon, is huge. The way the band twisted the Rolling Stones' “You Can't Always Get What You Want” into something new, with trumpet solos and slight melodic shifts, something that easily fits into their set, shows that Fun. is not done growing.
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Speaking for the band, Ruess said, “This is the best hometown show anybody could ask for.” Speaking for the fans, Ruess was absolutely right.
SETLIST: Out on the Town / One Foot / All the Pretty Girls / Why Am I The One / At Least I'm Not as Sad / All Alone / It Gets Better / Barlights / All Alright / The Gambler / Carry On / What the [expletive] / We Are Young // ENCORES: Some Nights / Stars / You Can't Always Get What You Want