As any human who has gone through the so-called “emo phase” can attest to, Fall Out Boy is a household name. The band consists of lead singer Patrick Stump, bassist Pete Wentz, lead guitar Joe Trohman, and drummer Andy Hurley. Forming all the way back in 2001, the group is still going strong with a brand new record preparing to drop and an accompanying world tour.
Two years ago I had the honor of seeing Fall Out Boy for the first time in Downtown Dallas at the Southside Ballroom. It was an intimate venue with an invested crowd. The vibe then was different to that of this year. Aside from the venue being comparable to a House of Blues, James Bay and George Ezra were the opening acts back in 2015.
Friday the 27 however, the vibe was wholly different; buzzing almost. Held at TD Garden, the crowd was vibrant and alive. Jaden Smith, aka Syre, was the first opener. He had a crazy amount of energy and lyrics that reflect the kinds of Tweets he crafts. It was an interesting beginning to the concert.
As more people filed in, hip-hop artist Blackbear began his set. He was passionate and interactive, looking to the crowd for energy. He was completely engaged with his band, especially the saxophonist, whom I might add was phenomenal. The blend of jazzy instrumentals and Blackbear’s hip-hop register was intriguing and ear-catching.
Finally, it was time for what we had all come to see. The lights dimmed, a panel with graphics of crashing waves started to move, and Fall Out Boy began to play “Phoenix.” Everyone was screaming; the dad in front of me was jamming; the stadium was at the whim of their music.
Later into the set they performed “Save Rock and Roll.” Originally sung with Elton John who was not on the tour, of course, Stump did what was all around perfect and the next best thing: he impersonated Sir Elton John during what would normally be verses. It was a magical thing to behold.
After playing some of their older songs, like “Hum Hallelujah,” “I Don’t Care,” and “My Songs Know What You Did In the Dark,” they played a few singles off of their upcoming album, Mania. The first single released from this album, “Young And Menace,” is exceedingly different from their normal sound. It is pretty heavy on the electronic side of music and not so much with the pop punk they tend to keep to. However, they played a stripped down, piano-based rendition of this song live, and it was beautiful.
The band also treated us to a taste of their currently unreleased single, “Expensive Mistakes.” It was upbeat but had hard-hitting lyrics about feeling as if you don’t belong anymore or just aren’t good enough.
Aside from the music, their stage presence was phenomenal. All four members had so much enthusiasm for performing and true love for their fans. Wentz noticed a girl dressed as a Teletubby and called for her to get a free shirt. I don’t think I have ever been more jealous of someone in a Tinky Winky costume before.
Initially set to release in October, Mania will drop in January 2018. It will be worth a listen for us pop punk kids. Correction: it will be worth a listen for anyone ready to embrace the greatness that is Fall Out Boy.