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FUN - Some Nights - Fueled by Ramen

Some music fans may remember a band called The Format. They released a couple records in the mid-2000’s and toured a good bit. The enjoyed some mild success, but decided to take a break in 2008. Nate Ruess, one of the founders of The Format, moved from Arizona to New York to form a new band, appropriately called fun. They released their first album in 2009 called Aim and Ignite and just recently put out there sophomore effort Some Nights. Their latest release has already grabbed some ears due to the anthemic “We Are Young” which features Janelle Monae. But as captivating as that song is, Some Nights is in many ways the album Ruess have been aiming to make his whole career.

At first listen, Some Nights¸ may have the sound of an album that falls under that ‘major label’ spell. It’s a big sonic sounding album, well-produced, youthful and radio ready. It has overarching appeal, but at the heart of all these songs is an artistic vision. Ruess is an orchestrator on Some Nights and this is his attempt at a masterpiece. The songs are meticulously arranged with big choral and string orchestrations, with a reach for pop and rock appeal. Ruess himself vocally delivers a stunning performance. As a frontman he is theatrical and charismatic. You can’t help but think he probably spent a lot of time listening to Queen as a youngster; especially after hearing his attempt at modern anthems like the title-track “Some Nights” and “Carry On”.

Some Nights has a unique ability to appeal to the masses, and in a very positive way. It all in one swing touches on alt-rock sensibilities, modern pop and honors great classic rock and roll. And perhaps most appealing of all, and the main reason to take this album seriously, is that Ruess and his band mates haven’t attempted to make a collection of radio hits. They may have done so inadvertently, but Some Nights aims to succeed as a cohesive album. It’s fair to say, it does.

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