Alter The Press!


Interview: fun. - 23/05/09

Jon managed to catch up with frontman Nate Ruess of fun. before their support slot with Manchester Orchestra at the House of Blues in San Diego.

Nate spoke to Alter The Press about the upcoming record, touring, the band coming together, experiences in the UK and more.

Alter The Press: How did 'fun.' as a band originate?
Nate: My old band (The Format) had broken up, so I called up two people who I always wanted to work with, that we had toured with before, and asked them if they wanted to finish up these songs that I had been writing. I'm not sure if we had a definitive plan to form a band, I just really asked for their help. I flew out to New York, where we were working on the music, and thought we should do something with it.

ATP: The band consists of the 3 of you, all coming from pretty established backgrounds; did you all know you wanted to work with each other?
Nate: I knew these were the guys I always wanted to work with. Andrew was no longer in Anathallo and Jack is in Steel Train, but he is like my brother so I just called him. It was incredible they wanted to do this and make this commitment.

ATP: The album is out mid August, you only have one song on MySpace and a demo on, is the record still in the works then?
Nate: No, the record is done. We are sitting back on it because we haven't really done anything except for one small acoustic tour. We're waiting till August so enough people will know about the band.

ATP: You're currently unsigned, is there a record deal in the works?
Nate: We signed to Nettwerk Records right away because they were my old band’s management company, and put out our last record, we are still talking to other labels. But, as of right now, we are signed to Nettwerk.

ATP: fun. previously toured with Jack's Mannequin. That was a perfect line up as your styles are very similar. How was that for you?
Nate: It was great. I've known Andrew (McMahon - front man of Jack's Mannequin) and the guys for a long time. He had only heard one fun. song before he decided he wanted us out on the road with him; and Manchester Orchestra were the same. It's really flattering the responses we have had.

ATP: With your live show, you have the 3 members and 3 other musicians with you? Are they permanent members, or just helping with this tour?
Nate: Yes, there are six of us. They are friends of ours, whom we love and admire as musicians from great bands; who are wonderful enough to come out on tour with us. I think they will be touring with us for the meantime, or we’ll get someone else to help out. It's like a revolving door of musicians.

ATP: How has the Manchester Orchestra tour been going?
Nate: It's been wonderful. Manchester are amazing. I've never really listened to them before and I’m wowed every night. We are shocked that we have only released one song and that the crowd reaction every night has been great.

ATP: How would you compare being in fun. to being in The Format?
Nate: We were used to doing pretty big sized venues; coming back as a support was weird. There are a lot of people who didn't know that The Format had broken up. A part of me doesn't expect anyone to know or care about the band but it's always a surprise.

ATP: When can we see you in the UK?
Nate: We are hoping by the end of spring. The Format never did anything in the UK except for one tour. The plan with fun. is to go to as many places as possible.

ATP: What are your fondest memories of the UK?
Nate: I have the best story. We met up with some friends who were in the UK on tour, playing their last show. At the time, I was living in Arizona and they were from California, so we decided that we wanted to find Mexican food in England. So we manage to find this pub, which is serving it, and they claimed to have the hottest peppers in the world. So, I order this burrito and the owner starts talking to me about these peppers and how they are genetically engineered and how they are waiting to get into the Guinness Book Of Records for World's Hottest Pepper. I was thinking, "Whatever! This is England!" So, he cuts me off a sliver, which is like $50 but gave it to me on the house, and cut a bunch for the table. I tried it and it was the craziest thing I ever had and everyone tried it and then the whole table disappeared! One guy accidently touched his eyes and they were burning, so he was running into the bathroom trying to wash his eyes out, one guy starts puking! It was intense, but I manned up on the experience, but it was the craziest thing ever to have in England.

ATP: What is planned after the Manchester Orchestra tour?
Nate: Go home for a couple months and then come back out on tour in August-October. The record comes out in August so we will do another direct support tour with a band then, and a mini-headlining tour.

fun.'s debut album 'Aim and Ignite' is out August 25th.

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