One of the cool things about Fun., aside from their superfluous stylistic period, is that they blend elements of so many seemingly disparate musical genres into a final product that is solely their own. Rooted in a theatrical rock passed down from the likes of Fall Out Boy and My Chemical Romance, Fun. also borrow a good deal from Top 40 songcraft and hip-hop production (right down to the preponderance of auto-tune on the vocals). It’s why “We Are Young” could quickly become so omnipresent—because despite its general weirdness, because of its wide pop reach, it sounds equally at home on alt-rock radio, in TV commercials and in episodes of Glee.
Anyway, one of the genres that we had previously neglected to compute in our formula of Fun. was country, but after the group’s recent visit to the Sirius studio, maybe we should start including that as well. The trio gave an acoustic performance of Nashville superpowers Lady Antebellum’s country chart-topper “We Owned the Night,” with lead singer Nathan Ruess impressing with his pitch-perfect reading of the song’s vocals—making it sound like an anthem not all that dissimilar to the group’s recently announced second single, “Some Nights.” It’s a low-key and unassuming production, but one that proves that Fun. can get the job done even without all the studio bells and whistles.
It’s hard to remember a crossover rock band with pop sensibilities this acute since Fall Out Boy. That group’s Top 40 ambitions ultimately did them in, though, so here’s hoping Fun. can shoot for the stars without becoming totally un-rooted (dis-rooted? Rootless?) in the process.