Saturday, October 9, 2010

Show Review - Fun. - Mr Smalls - 10/2/10 - Pittsburgh - Concert Review - Live Reivew

When you hear Fun. is coming to Pittsburgh, you buy a ticket. If you were not there on Saturday, now you know that it is mandatory to attend regardless of weather, sickness, etc. The reason being that Fun. is arguably one of the best bands that still tour. That being said, I was first in line at Mr. Small’s, two and a half hours before the doors opened. Words cannot describe how excited I was to see Fun., Steel Train (who dropped the show), Jarrod Gorbel, and my friends in Instead of Sleeping, even after several games of Go Fish and Old Maid and sitting outside in the chilly weather. Even after I learned Steel Train had dropped the show, I still could hardly wait for my night to begin.

Long before local openers, Instead of Sleeping, took the stage the crowd had grown to a decent size. By the time they started to play the room was nearly full. In addition to being young, talented local artists the members of Instead of Sleeping are my friends. I have seen them countless times in a wide array of venues as opening acts as well as headliners. The boys of Instead of Sleeping are hungry for success, they know how to connect with their fans, and are reliable for being consistent in performance. It was a joy to hear that they were opening for such a prestigious show. They deserve every bit of exposure. For those who are not familiar with Instead of Sleeping, their sound takes influences from Brand New, Minus The Bear, and Miles Davis. They are not your average local-Pittsburgh-rock-band as demonstrated in their percussion, trumpet, and keyboard features. To my surprise and delight, the crowd loved them. They were a great start to a fun night.

The crowd was alive after such an intense set, that when Jarrod Gorbel, with his single electric guitar, and his friend with her violin, took the stage we all kind of scratched our heads. We were ready for Steel Train, and Fun. We were ready for Pop songs about drug abuse and losing friends; after all, that's why we came. It was obvious Jarrod had talent, but it was undermined by the buzz created by Instead of Sleeping opening, and the excitement of what was to come next. Had Jarrod opened up for a band like Copeland, or I Can Make A Mess Like Nobody's Business, it would be a different story entirely. His set dragged on a little longer than the people around me would have liked, but no one was disrespectful.

The time had finally come for Fun. to perform. The entire room was filled with energy. It's hard to believe that Fun. is only two years old when you look at the numbers they bring out to shows. I remember when I saw Fun. the first time open for Manchester Orchestra. They were nothing short of amazing, and equally unknown. This show, when Nate begins to sing the first few words of "At Least I'm Not (As Sad As I Used To Be)" there could not have been a person in the room who wasn't singing along. The set list was everything you could wish for, and more. They played every song from their only full-length album, Aim and Ignite, in addition to one and a half The Format (Nate's former band) covers ("Dog Problems", and half of "She Doesn't Get It") a new song ("What the Fu**") and a cover of the Rolling Stone's "You Can't Always Get What You Want." But wait! There's more! It's not just that Fun. performs all of their songs just as well live as recorded, it's that they bring a ridiculous amount of energy and character to the stage. It's the kind of show that the concert goers talk about for weeks, and months after.

-Laura Lee Burkhardt