Categorized | Arts & Entertainment

The Scene: 2/15/13

Fall Out Boy Fever

Sarah Carracher

I first found out on Facebook. And then proceeded to Google it, check Twitter, and double-check Facebook. After more than three years’ hiatus, Fall Out Boy was back.

The reunion of one’s favorite band from his or her adolescent years is a joyful moment for anyone with the ability to feel emotion. And after years of patiently waiting, the perhaps small, but dedicated, Fall Out Boy fanbase, myself included, is finally experiencing this renewed excitement. When you grow up with a band the way some of us grew up with Fall Out Boy, they begin to feel like members of the family.

Though my taste in music has evolved significantly since I received “From Under the Cork Tree” for Christmas in seventh grade, I never stopped loving Fall Out Boy. After attending my first “real” concert (Fall Out Boy, of course) at 13 with my mom, sister and some very apathetic friends, I was hooked. Ever since then, I have bought each and every album on its release date and subconsciously memorized every lyric. Seeing as I typically go through brief musical devotions (a.k.a. I listen to the same artist nonstop for three weeks until I get sick of it), my undying and somewhat nonsensical seven-year appreciation for Fall Out Boy confuses even myself  —  after all, it’s not like they’re the Beatles.

Upon their recent reunion and my consequential overdose of excitement, I wanted to dissect what has made them so special to me and other fans. There’s the quality of distinctness: they have managed, since their beginning, to maintain a sound that is unique from other bands but that changes from each album to the next, while still maintaining that familiar Fall Out Boy-ness. The characteristic that I believe is the most important is the total sincerity of their lyrics that allows fans to connect with the band and its songs from a shorter distance than with other artists.

As Fall Out Boy’s sound evolves with each album, so do the subjects of their songs. While their earlier music fulfills the obligatory love and heartbreak role, their later music deals with issues such as narcissism, morality and responsibility.

Their new single “My Songs Know What You Did in the Dark (Light Em Up)” seems to attack music, going along with the title of their new album, “Save Rock and Roll.” In this song, they have created an almost entirely new sound. The song features hard rock hooks and a darker mood than listeners are accustomed to hearing from the band who released “Sugar We’re Goin Down” seven years ago. Fans may also be surprised by the sound of Patrick Stump screaming about fire  —  yes, screaming.

The music video features more unusual characteristics: it stars rapper 2 Chainz (and two attractive women, of course) burning instruments and Fall Out Boy memorabilia. This metaphor for disenchantment and their totally new sound demonstrate a fresh, new beginning for the band. Though they are clearly heading in a new and very different direction, they retain the same sense of Fall Out Boy identity that made us love them in the first place.

Sarah Carracher is a staff writer for the Voice. She can be reached for comment at

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