It's true that when I heard fun. (as you may remember from my summer review of their debut, Aim and Ignite), I wasn't crazy about them but in the months in between my first listen and now, bits of Aim and Ignite filtered into my subconscious and soon, fun. became my default good mood music because it's just impossible to feel down and out when listening to a song as infectiously upbeat as the tunes that pepper the vast majority of fun.'s debut.
fun. brought their first headlining tour to Schubas September 24th and within a week of tickets going on sale, the show sold out, no small feat for most national acts that hit the venue, let alone a band who only just released their debut.
The show was an early one, with openers Miniature Tigers starting their set well before eight, with the whole shebang wrapping up at about ten. I was skeptical that Chicago could properly rock before sunset but Schubas packed the hipsters in like sardines and the venue was near to capacity even before fun. took the stage, with the majority of the crowd giving Phoenix's Miniature Tigers a warm welcome back to the city. The Tigers have had a good run in Chicago, playing Schubas twice in the past six months and performing to sold out crowds each time, so it's no surprise that people were quite receptive to their catchy indie pop, the sunny melodies of which made them a perfect precursor to fun.'s more straight foward, energetic brand of music.
When fun. took the stage, the audience more or less reacted as if The Beatles had just been resurrected and it took lead singer Nate Ruess quite a few moments to calm the crowd before launching into At Least I'm Not As Sad (As I Used To Be) before launching into stand out songs like All The Pretty Girls, Be Calm and Take Your Time Coming Home, to name a few. Playing nearly all the tunes off of their debut to a crowd that knew all the songs by heart, fun. not only delivered a set that sent the audience into a veritable but the band also tipped their proverbial cap to Nate's past band by playing a cover of what is arguably The Format's best known song, "The First Single", a song that's catchiness rivals some of the best moments of fun.'s debut. Introducing The Gambler and dedicating it to his father (who was in attendance), Nate proved that fun. doesn't only live up to their name but also has some serious substance behind their poppy sensibilities.
If you missed fun. this time around, do yourself a favor and pick up tickets for their forthcoming October 28th show at the House of Blues with Taking Back Sunday as soon as you can, as they are sure to go fast. Even if you aren't crazy about the Long Island emo pioneers they'll be sharing the stage with, fun. will be worth the price of admission and will guarantee you a great evening.