It’s almost the end of October, which means that Christmas (and Hanukkah) and the New Year are quickly approaching. This also means figuring out my favorite albums of 2009. One album that gets the instant “nod” is Aim and Ignite by the New York-based band, fun. Former lead singer of The Format, Nate Ruess, takes the reigns of this trio, a band that exemplifies the term enthusiasm.

Their music is passionate, cheerful, and most importantly, fun. Right from the first track, listeners are treated to Ruess’s uplifting, spirited vocals that are equally powerful in every song throughout the album. At times, his voice reaches notes that even Broadway actors couldn’t achieve (“Be Calm”). fun. (lower case f-u-n period) is a band that utilizes a wide variety of instruments in order to create well-composed, eccentric indie pop music. I can truly say that Aim and Ignite is one of my top five favorite albums of 2009. It’s just one of those album you can listen to all the way through, over and over without getting sick of.

Now a brief history that can partially explain why I like fun. so much (other than the fact that they make great music!). I have been a huge fan of anything Nate Ruess since my freshman year of college when The Format came to Boulder, Colorado. It isn’t often that a band can completely blow their first album out of the water with their second attempt, but this was something that The Format was able to do. Added quirks, theatrical elements, and relevant lyrics all made Dog Problems a fantastic album.

In the three years following the release of Interventions + Lullabies, the band had matured incredibly. It was due to this progress that news of The Format’s break up really got to me. I had pretty much given up hope of another album, when I walked into the Bluebird Theatre in Denver, Colorado. I was attending a Jack’s Mannequin concert with my friend Kristy, and the opening act just so happened to be fun. As we were making our way towards the front of the crowd, they started to play “The First Single (You Know Me)”. It was at this moment that I made the connection (fun.’s lead singer = The Format’s lead singer).

From this point on, I was on the web constantly looking for updates about the band and researching when they would be releasing their debut album. Aim and Ignite finally came out on August 25, my birthday. Damn good present! This is one of my favorite bands, so enjoy the music below thoroughly and go buy the album!

Thanks Squarespace!