Indie-rock today is a completely blended genre. Finding an album that can stand uniquely alone is borderline impossible. “Some Nights” the second record from the native NYC indie-rock trio fun. will appease listeners for the first half and leave them exhausted and bored by the end.
In the debut (“Aim and Ignite” 2009) the band was clearly experimenting with its sound. Valid signs of hip-hop and then contradictory slow-paced tracks were found. This time around, lead vocalist Nate Ruess shows off his powerful pipes matching the impressive endurance of Adam Lambert’s piercing wails.
In the beginning this album starts off strong with familiar distinctive Queen-esque parallels. The “Some Nights-Intro” and the self-titled track “Some Nights” carries an operatic chorus and climaxed instrumentation bringing to mind the infamous “Bohemian Rhapsody.” All it takes is one go around through the track “We Are Young” and the lyrics along with encompassing drumbeat and assisted vocals from feature artist Janelle Monae (American R&B artist signed to Bad Boy Records and Atlantic) are instilled in the brain. Without hesitation and setting aside its immediate Billboard success, this is the best offer this album has to give. “Tonight/We are young/So let’s set the world on fire/We can burn brighter than the sun.” Following suite, “Carry On” embodies the same positive musical traits as the intro tracks.
Once this set of tracks reaches the half way mark, it immediately shifts gears and falls off the edge. With an overwhelming electric feel and repetitive lyrics that sound literally like a broken record that needs to be put out of its misery, “It Gets Better” is the epiphany of the use of auto-tune. Moving slightly forward, “Why Am I The One” is aimed to be a more melancholic love song, but it sounds more like a pop-appeasing mockery rather than a genuine emotion. This musical equation does not add up. Reaching close to the conclusion is “One Foot” a carefree song about going through life and what insinuates to be religious context sounds more like an obnoxious sampled salsa dance than an actual track.
This album does not work well as a package. There are a few highlighted tracks that are better off being downloaded individually from Itunes to spare the listener from a killer migraine and violent tendencies. Without a doubt there will be fans that enjoy the power-chorus vibe that this album does well, however, taking it for what it is – Queen does it much better. Why not just re-visit the prequel.