Date / Venue: Wednesday March 13th, Logan Campbell Centre, Auckland
With the line stretching from the doors of the Logan Campbell Centre all the way around the carpark almost two hours prior to the doors opening, I'd say this proves Fun has an enormous devoted fan base, who were not willing to miss this sold out show for the world.
The night got underway with a great line-up of kiwi artists who all seemed to share the same excitement and energy as the enthusiastic crowd in front of them. Kidz In Space, New Zealand pop/hip hop trio started the party off with a real bang getting the crowd pumping with popular singles ‘Ghost' and ‘Downtime' to conclude their set.
Next to take to the stage was New Zealand's pop princess and current NZ X-Factor judge, Ruby Frost. She continued the party perfectly, despite a slight technical malfunction which seemingly went unnoticed, thanks to the exceptional drumming skills of Jimmy Mac and a very supportive, lively audience.
Last of the support acts to take the stage was new wave duo, Kids Of 88 who entirely tripled the crowds ecstatic energy and enthusiasm by 100 percent. Vocalist Sam McCarthy's stage presence was incredibly exceptional, dispatching the crowd's energy immensely and adding to the electrifying atmosphere.After a magnificent run of extraordinary New Zealand musical acts it was finally time for who the 3,000 fans had truly come along to see.
The impatience of the crowd set in during the change over and set up of the stage and the "Fun! Fun! Fun!" chanting began, combined with the screaming and applause that occurred whenever a sound technician walked onto the stage. The Logan Campbell Centre proved to be the perfect intimate setting that Fun prefer to perform in, as this gives them greater rapport with their audiences. As the lead singer, Nate Ruessattempted to interact with the audience, he was met with a barrage of enthusiastic screaming and clapping from the crowd. FUN arrived to deafening screams as they opened their set with the thundering drum-powered song ‘Out On The Town.' The backdrop of white fairy lights were accentuated even more so by the remarkable strobe lighting effects which were flashing around the space. The sound quality was impeccable with Ruess's voice hitting you in the face from every direction possible. Concluding the first two songs on the set list ‘Out On The Town' & 'One Foot,' Ruess then informed the crowd that, "We knew New Zealand was going to be like this. Before we came on we said this is probably going to be the best fucking crowd ever!" The three core Fun guys were joined by an extra trio who together built a wall of sound. The group bounced between songs from ‘Some Nights' and debut album ‘Aim & Ignite,' which were all greeted with equal enthusiasm. Their set list ranged from the clanking power-pop of ‘It Gets Better' and ‘Pretty Girls' to the stadium-sized ‘Some Nights' and ‘We Are Young.'
Throughout a couple of songs, Ruess actually had to stop and quickly state, "You guys are fucking awesome!" before continuing on. Ruess masterfully orchestrated ‘Barlights' from ‘Aim & Ignite' between the band and audience members, gradually building the song into its inevitable climax. As the venue echoed with the chorus of the song, it eventually concluded with Ruess tackling keyboardist Andrew Dost to the floor. ‘We Are Young' was greeted with boy-band level hysteria and spiked by a loud exceptional vocal and guitar fuelled finale. Fun disappeared off the stage concluding their version of ‘You Can't Always Get What You Want,'leaving the audience screaming for an encore. The trio didn't need much encouragement however, running back onto the stage just minutes later to perform their exuberant pop-anthem ‘Some Nights,' which without a doubt proved to be a crowd pleaser. Ending their encore with a crowd sing-a-long of ‘Stars' left the exceptional raw vocals of Nate Ruess thumping around in many a head for hours afterwards. Melting the hearts of almost everyone in the room, including mine, I admit, was when Ruess admitted, "I believe this is the most welcome the band and I have ever felt in a different country."
To top this heart-warming statement off, he informed the audience that he would love to move to New Zealand one day. I for one am counting down the days till this happens!
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