Then and Now

Let’s go back to May of 2003, when a band from Chicago released their first full length album entitled Take This to Your Grave.

This band later went on to release four full length albums, each one getting more mainstream than the last. Yep, that’s right folks; I’m talking about Fall Out Boy.

Fall Out Boy is made up of Patrick Stump, Pete Wentz, Joe Trohman and Andy Hurley. These four friends have been though so much together, from marriages and scandals to charity work and writing four successful studio albums. But through all of this “hardship”, Fall Out Boy went from being this great amazing band that wrote songs from the heart, to…something that only writes songs to make money.

With the release of their latest album Folie à Deux on December 16, it is very plain to see that Fall Out Boy has lost sight of their original roots. The use of additional vocals and other instruments make the album seem too loud for its own good. Only a few songs seem to jump out at me as being really good. The album recently went gold on January 27, selling over 500,000 copies.

One of them, “What A Catch, Donnie,” doesn’t sound like the Fall Out Boy I used to love, but the last 30 seconds is where this slow song makes up for itself. Portions of lyrics from past hits are sung in the background by Elvis Costello, Gabe Saporta of Cobra Starship, Brandon Urie of Panic at the Disco, Travis McCoy of Gym Class Heroes, Doug Neumann of Doug, Alex DeLeon of The Cab, and William Beckett of The Academy Is…. This is the only redeeming quality that I could find on this album and it only lasted a total of 30 seconds.

It used to be that every single song on a Fall Out Boy album got me excited to hear more and now, it’s like I’m listening to every other band in the world who only write music to make money.

Infinity on High, which was released on February of 2007, was ranked 46 on Rolling Stone’s Top 50 Albums of 2007. The album had a total of five singles that came off of it; each had their own music video that accompanied the song. This album shows the transition that Fall Out Boy had from being really good to being really bad. Only a few songs like, "Thnks fr th Mmrs" and "The Take Over, the Breaks Over" held a glimmer of what Fall Out Boy once was; an awesome pop-punk band that could make great music like no one’s business. Other songs on Infinity on High were worth remembering and others…just didn’t quite cut it. Although they did sell over 1,500,000 copies of Infinity on High, it wasn’t one of their best albums.

From Under The Cork Tree was where Fall Out Boy made it big. With singles from the album like “Dance, Dance”, “Sugar, We’re Going Down” and “A Little Less Sixteen Candles, a Little More Touch Me”, made it really hard for fans, or anyone for that matter, not to like this album. The songs were still down to earth and were written from the heart. The videos that came with all the singles as well were some of the best that Fall Out Boy has ever done. This is the album where everyone had finally heard about this Chicago band. Their record sales soared, selling over 2,600,000 records.

In May of 2003, Fall Out Boy released their first full length album; Take This To Your Grave. This featured singles like, “Dead On Arrival”, “Grand Theft Autumn / Where Is Your Boy” and “Saturday”. It’s hard to imagine that Fall Out Boy didn’t receive more attention from fans. The songs are catchy and have so much more heart and soul in the lyrics than their newer songs. Wentz, who is the primary lyricist, collaborated with Stump to write this album. They did a great job and this album clearly doesn’t get as much credit as it deserves. The song off this album, “Dead On Arrival,” is available for play on the video game Rock Band.

Looking back on their career, their songs have gone from something great and are slowly dwindling to music that is just there to make money. Before they became famous, Fall Out Boy was making music because they actually wanted to not because they wanted to make money (shocker). Fall Out Boy, although they deny it, have sold out and become something that everyone can relate to now, instead of a select few. They’re trying to make the most money they can so all they do is write songs that are so generic and boring that it hurts to listen to them.

If you would like to listen to some good quality old school Fall Out Boy, check out Take This To Your Grave and From Under The Cork Tree. Those two albums will give you the best look at Fall Out Boy before they got famous and sold out.

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