In which I went to Boston for Fall Out Boy, and it was an awesome, sweaty, raucous festival of joy.
But to back up a little bit: Up first was NK, which is Ryan Hunter and Brian Byrne (Envy on The Coast) and Billy Rymer (Dillinger Escape Plan), and they’re currently touring with Isaac Bolivar and Matt Fazzi (Taking Back Sunday).
They have a heavy rap-rock Rage Against The Machine vibe going. I didn’t know any of their songs but I could nonetheless appreciate the barely controlled surge and snarl of their drums and guitars. I’m pretty sure it isn’t possible to listen to their set and not suddenly find yourself banging your head.
This really is Ryan Hunter (Envy on the Coast). He cut all of his dreads off!
Joe Trohman and Isaac Bolivar, headbanging.
The right side of the stage . . .
. . . and the left.
And then it was time for the main event. Fall Out Boy came out in a burst of light and noise and kicked it off with Thriller – their Thriller, not Michael Jackson’s – which was an absolute perfect choice and caused my heart to clench with pain and affection even as I was grinning at them like an idiot.
I have a medium-sized number of thinky thoughts about the show / spectacle, specifically: that both Thriller and This Ain’t A Scene, It’s An Arms Race have gained new, sharper edges over time; that The Phoenix is both the thrilling rally cry of a band coming back wrapped around a reminder to hold on, hold on, even when your band has gone away; that if you don’t start jumping during The Phoenix, I think you might be dead inside; that Fall Out Boy has emerged from their hiatus as an energized and cohesive unit, ready to rally the troops and take on the world (and maybe take over the world, too); that calling their record Save Rock and Roll might be brash and a little obnoxious but, well, Fall Out Boy would not be Fall Out Boy if they were not brash and a little obnoxious; and that brash, a little obnoxious, overblown and sometimes overwrought is why we love them. It’s why we jump up and down and and wave our hands in the air. It’s what makes the room sing.
And now, some pictures. I was three rows back from the stage and, as you will see, deep in a forest of hands, but these are some of the good shots:
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