Fall Out Boy's “Save Rock & Roll” Album Review
Around this time last year, I came across a quote in the depths of the Internet that read: “Fall Out Boy is the older brother you wanted to be like when you were a kid and he got you into a lot of bands you listened to and you just idolized him but then he went to college and he said he’d come back for Christmas but it’s been three years since you’ve seen him and the phone number he gave you is disconnected.”
I stopped everything I was doing, thought about it, and realized it was so true. As college students it is very likely that all of our musical tastes have evolved. Many of us are not proud of a lot of our musical decisions throughout the years (this is coming from a girl who went through a severe Chris Brown phase in middle school), and may even look back on our old favorites in regret. However, as much as we despise our younger selves for our previous preferences, it’s hard not to admit that old bands and artists will always hold a special place in our hearts. They were huge musical influences and helped shape what we listen to today. One of the bands that many of our peers remember listening to back in the day of C.D. players was pop-punkers Fall Out Boy, and after four years of anticipation and rumors of a permanent break-up after lead singer Patrick Stump released a solo album in 2011, they’ve finally come back to satiate the needs of its more mature audience with their new album “Save Rock & Roll.”
Although critics have called the album title extremely misleading and stated that the band has strayed too far from the angst-ridden sound it used to have, I found “Save Rock & Roll” to be a great comeback album. Fall Out Boy made very conscious decisions in the sound of this album, recognizing that the music scene along with its audience, now mostly college-age young adults, has shifted dramatically since their last release. The band kept in mind that EDM is creeping into just about every song you hear on a Top 40 radio station and that their listeners moved on from their high school lives to more independent college years. This might have accounted for the dramatic response from some music blogs and other sites. But then again, any band that hasn’t been around for four years and releases something new is bound to be criticized. As someone who thoroughly enjoyed listening to the album (maybe more than once) on a long car ride, here’s what I thought were some of FOB’s must-listen-to tracks, just in case anyone isn’t into the idea of downloading an entire album.
Track 01-The Phoenix:
This song is super energetic and is suitably symbolic for the band’s comeback. If you’re into ancient mythology (or Harry Potter), you know that the phoenix is a mythological bird that periodically bursts into flames and dies, only to be reborn from the ashes. I see what you did there, Fall Out Boy.
Favorite lyric: “You know time crawls on when you're waiting for the song to start/ So dance alone to the beat of your heart”
Track 03- Alone Together:
For a second I almost thought that some old Fall Out Boy got mixed up on my “Save Rock & Roll” playlist. This song sounds so reminiscent of their older stuff that I felt like I was my chubby 7th grade self again - that good.
Favorite lyric: “I don’t know where you’re going, but do you got room for one more troubled soul.”
Track 06- The Mighty Fall:
I was pretty skeptical when I saw that Big Sean was featured in “The Mighty Fall.” This is the point where I thought “Okay, maybe they’re trying a little too hard.” But in its entirety, the song is catchy and powerful enough to get you going at the gym. (Except I can’t help but roll my eyes and throw up in my mouth a little every time Big Sean spits his “Hell yeah I’m a dick girl, I’m addicted to you” line).
Favorite lyric: “But if you ask me two's a whole lot lonelier than one/Baby we should have left our love in the gutter where we found it/Cause you think your only crime is that you got caught.”
Track 11- Save Rock and Roll:
This last track is kind of a re-declaration of the band’s initial message and passion for their type of music. I also saw it as an attempt to comfort their audience, acknowledging that they’ve acted like that previously mentioned “idolized older brother who went off to college and disappeared,” but reminding us that the band we knew and loved is still “going down swinging.” I also loved hearing Elton John attempt a Patrick Stump voice.
Favorite lyric: “You are what you love, not who loves you.”
I could go on forever about the depth of each lyric in each song, but I feel like letting you do that yourself would make it more fun. All in all, I definitely recommend keeping an open mind and giving the album a listen. The older brother is back and trying to make up for the past four Christmases, you might as well give him a chance.