I think people have finally gotten used to the yearly back-to-school lamentations about just how old or nonexistent college freshmen were when Kurt Cobain died, so here's a new one: The Format's Interventions + Lullabies, the erstwhile Great Arizonan Hopes' infamously under-supported major-label album, turned 10 years old Monday.
Surprise: You are becoming an old person. Less surprising: This is still a really, really good album.
I'm not an Arizona native, so I was a Dog Problems guy -- I knew them and eventually drove across Missouri (don't recommend it) to see them (would recommend it) as The Band with All the Label Problems. Hearing them as a band that hadn't yet had the kind of experiences that led to "The Compromise" was nearly as jarring an experience for me as hearing Nate Ruess in a Super Bowl commercial years later.
Because of all that out-of-town baggage, I'll never really be able to understand The Format as up-and-comers, as local boys made good, etc. But songs like "Career Day" -- a surprisingly good predictor of fun.'s eventual sound -- and "Let's Make This Moment a Crime" don't need a built-in narrative to be compelling.
Not only has Interventions + Lullabies been out for 10 years, it's been more than five years since The Format broke up. It's probably time to accept that fun. exists and is pretty good. But a decade is as good a time as any to appreciate just how well their first full album of anxious, cartoonishly fun pop music has stood up.
After the jump: Even more Format videos, with even more big Nate Ruess hair.
If you like this story, consider signing up for our email newsletters.
SHOW ME HOW
You have successfully signed up for your selected newsletter(s) - please keep an eye on your mailbox, we're movin' in!