They’re not really pop, though after after hearing the piercing screams of elated girls (and women) at the Wiltern on Sunday night, one would think they were. They’re not really pop. They sneak “fuck” into the lyrics of their incredibly catchy hit “Some Nights,” after all. No, they’re different. Wikipedia calls them, “indie pop,” “power pop,” and “indie rock,” but this indie-alternative-rock-pop-power band can really just be summed up as a good old-fashioned fun band, pun totally intended.
The Wiltern sported an incredibly long line around the side of the building long before the doors opened at 7:30 pm. And once the doors did open, well, hell hath no fury like a fun. fan with a general admission ticket. The crowd packed into the beautifully crafted and acoustically gorgeous theater, eagerly waiting to experience fun.
Fool’s Gold opened the show and provided a very unique flavor to the evening. Complete with bongos, a saxophone, and a bowler hat, this band — comprised of Luke Top, Lewis Pesacov, Garrett Ray, Brad Caulkins, and Salvador Placencia — put on a festive show. African rhythms fused with Western pop, and tropical variations got the audiences’ hips swinging. Though the wide stage of the Wiltern felt a little too big for such an intimate and dance-centric band, their sound filled the space with ease.
About a half an hour after Fool’s Gold set ended, fun. took the stage, commanding attention with their first song of the night “Carry On.” The song built slowly, with Nate Ruess, the singer, in complete darkness, save for a few spotlights. Then suddenly, as the song picked up, the entire stage glowed hot with a wall of lights. With the entire touring band sprawled across the stage — with core members Andrew Dost and Jack Antonoff on the piano and guitar respectively — the group gave the audience a true stage show.
fun. galloped through the set, playing fan favorites like “It Gets Better,” “One Foot,” “The Gambler,” and “We Are Young” with feverish energy. They truly used the entire space of the stage, running from one side to another, making sure the entire audience got equal attention. During one point in the show, the band payed homage to the Rolling Stones as they covered the song “You Can’t Always Get What You Want,” which got the entire crowd, young and younger, to sing along.
The lights pulsed in synchronization to each song, mesmerizing everyone in attendance, but if the lights didn’t keep the audience’s attention, the booming bass of the drums, the catchy songs, and the wave of confetti and balloons, perfectly timed in the end of the show, sure did. The large blast of confetti was released during the group’s performance of the song “Barfights” from their debut album Aim and Ignite, and they rounded out their encore with a nice balloon drop to “Some Nights,” the title track off their sophomore release.
As fun. fans exited the theater, a Disney-esque joy ran through the crowd. Fans hummed the songs with arms draped around shoulders, completely satisfied with feeling good about it all.
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Concert photos taken by Christine Perez