Fun. - Aim And Ignite
Nate Ruess is an autobiographer; every album that he has made is very explicitly a pivotal chapter in his life. With The Format, we have been invited to listen to some of his hardest times balancing break-ups and a watery career. Now with fun., we get to see the best of Ruess, the most beautiful time of his life after his move into the Big Apple, leaving his ghosts back in Arizona. He is truly happy, and with the help of Andrew Dost (former member of Anathello) and Steel Train's Jack Antonoff, fun. is a musical translation of his joy: a pretty project of horns and strings, a vaudeville musical.
Aim and Ignite is a delightful package of songs that respectfully pay its dues to Ruess' unique, softhearted chops. Singing for The Format was one dimension, but Ruess really has the vocal capabilities for a musical, theatrical band like fun. “All The Pretty Girls” is the flawless example where Nate croons in his distinguishing gentle voice alongside the most whimsical string ensemble and the dainty sounds of a spinet. It is a big, theatrical explosion followed by more fanciful gems of theatrical resonance such as "Light A Roman Candle With Me" and "Barlights."
Nate Ruess sings to us because he understands, and singing of understanding must be the most powerful thing to hear. He sings to reflect but also to encourage the many young hearts who have been in the same position as he. For example, "Be Calm" is an elaborately tuned masterpiece that tells us to learn from Ruess' own story of braving his first steps through New York City. As an autobiographer, one finds the most success when the story is almost universally relatable. Perhaps that's why Reuss has won with Aim and Ignite.
Aim and Ignite wipes our tears, pulls us into an embrace, and teaches us to smile for the future. It is personable, as if it has been tailored to help us realize that even in the face of our biggest demons, we come out conquerers.
Welcome to a new kind of sunshine, Nate. Here's to hoping for the highest of highs in your future treks.
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