Fun. at House of Blues Dallas, March 21, 2012
I’m sleepy-eyed and typing this right now because I’m afraid that leaving this post for the morning will cause me to lose some of my post-concert goodness that’s necessary for me to even begin to give this show the words it deserves. The brilliance of Fun. tonight was not the fact that I’ve been a fan since they began and I was a long-time follower of the Format, where Nate’s incredible vocals first hit fourteen year-old Jennifer. It was more. Beyond that, it was one of those “once in a lifetime” circumstances seeing Fun. right as they are making it big. After their album Some Nights dropped and their single hit number one, it made sense that the show would be completely sold out, but the crowd was perfection, knowing the old album as well as the new. You can always tell when a musician is playing to a crowd that sings the songs back to them. Simply (and complicatingly), it was magical. It wasn’t the typical concert energy either. Of course, that energy never ceases to be spectacular, regardless if you’re crammed in a small bar next to the loudest drunk guys or at a large arena with hundreds and hundreds of other people. Live music is like nothing else, and I don’t know if it’s that I don’t ever see bad shows or if I don’t know what a bad show is, but I always walk out with the inexplicable music high. And after sitting around in silence for a few hours, melting in the tension of my shoulders and croaky voice and ears that continue to ring hours later, I think I’ve figured out how to explain what was so remarkable about this night. On the drive back to Denton, Julia was gracious enough to let me blab on about the show in messy, incoherent sentences that mostly consisted of things like “Man” and “Geez” and “I just don’t know,” and geez, man, I still don’t know what to say about it. But beyond those (brilliant) statements, I said that every Fun. song is an anthem in itself. And delivered by Nate, with his face (geez, that face!) and genuine smile that makes everything bad and difficult about being alive melt away, they’re pretty damn powerful anthems and I proudly put my fist in the air, song after song after song, shouting his words that make more sense than any words I’m ever able to string together. The band has power, significant, beautiful power, that resonates long after the song ends.
The opening notes of the Gambler on the piano gave away the song minutes before they played it. Nate told a story as I whispered, well, as much as one can whisper at a show, to Julia that I thought the next song would be the Gambler, crossing my fingers that I would be right. I allowed myself to be the annoying-video-recorder-holding-iphone-over-her-head-girl long enough to (shamelessly) catch this song.