Words: Jennifer Lynn
Image: Helga Esteb
“If you don’t know the words just dance along. If you do know the words I want to fucking hear you!”
This was the demand of Nate Ruess, the charismatic frontman of US indie pop band FUN. who headlined Glasgow’s O2 ABC last night.
Considering FUN. were relatively unknown in the UK, until the release of number one single We Are Young in May this year, it appeared that everyone in the sold-out audience knew the words- to every. single. song.
Kicking off with Carry On, a track from their album Some Nights, Ruess had the crowd whipped into a frenzy from the word go. Looking positively dandy in his slim-fitting shirt and skinny trews, the flamboyant singer’s vocals could easily be compared to a young Freddie Mercury, thanks to an impressive range and plenty of musical theatrics.
Next up was One Foot, with its ironic lyrics, “I am over twenty-five and I can’t make a name for myself.” At thirty years old, Ruess’ army of both male and female fans are more than aware of his name, and of his musical prowess.
Despite it’s tale of heartbreak, the mood remained upbeat on Walking The Dog, with FUN. seemingly unable to do anything other than what their name suggests- not that this is a bad thing! Multi-talented keyboard/trumpet player Andrew Dost leant a hand with background vocals, and the friendly banter with the crowd, organised sing-a-longs and general comradery within the band made a refreshing change to the diva attitudes all too often demonstrated by some artists today.
Ruess’ vocals took an Adam Levigne-like twist on All Alone, with melodies not dissimilar to Maroon 5’s This Love, while All The Pretty Girls from the band’s debut album Aim And Ignite was a crowd pleaser amongst the hardcore fans.
Anouncing that they would be ending the show on a high, FUN. launched into the song everyone wanted to hear- We Are Young. With it’s infectious chorus, and a cheeky appearance on Gossip Girl earlier this year, even I could sing along to that one!
A cover of The Rolling Stones’ You Can’t Always Get What You Want had the band exiting the stage to rip roaring cheers. Although they are officially a three-piece band, Ruess, Dost and guitarist Jack Antonoff were joined on tour by drummer Will Noon, guitarist/saxophonist Emily Moore and Nate Harold on bass, and all six touring members shuffled their way back on stage for their encore, locked in a huddle.
Newest single Some Nights ended the show on the same high note it began, leaving the audience craving their next night of FUN.