FALL OUT BOY – THE BOYS OF ZUMMER TOUR: LIVE IN CHICAGO (2016)
Featuring Patrick Stump, Pete Wentz, Joe Trohman and Andy Hurley.
Directed by Jim Yukich.
Distributed by Eagle Vision. 80 minutes. Not Rated.
Fall Out Boy have changed a lot with the times over the decade and a half or so that they’ve mostly been together (this is including the two-three year hiatus they took in the early 2010s). They rocketed to fame in the early millennium emo-rock boom, mixing terrific songcraft with abnormally wordy titles (“A Little Less Sixteen Candles, A Little More ‘Touch Me,'” indeed…)
Now, their music is mostly similar, though to stay relevant they have taken to shoehorning campy and inappropriate samples into their tight rock tunes. For example: Suzanne Vega’s vocal “do-do-do’s” from “Tom’s Diner” struggle to fit in the rock bombast of “Centuries,” and even worse, “Uma Thurman” is shackled to an ongoing instrumental chunk of “The Munsters’ Theme” (not to mention a goofy lyric comparing the dude’s lover to the female lead in Pulp Fiction.)
Strange thing is, though, as much as the band has changed, they haven’t changed so much that now they suck. They haven’t surrendered their sound to stay up with the kids. In fact, of all the emo-rock bands they came up with, they are probably still about the most appropriate to the times, and probably still the most popular. (In fact, their closest competition would have to be their own discovery, Panic at the Disco.)
Despite the oddball title (FOB are nothing without oddball titles), The Boys of Zummer is actually a good refresher course as to what a smart, hard-hitting band Fall Out Boy really is.
Smartly, they kick things off by kicking out the jams with their breakthrough single – still arguably their best moment – “Sugar, We’re Going Down.” Smart, tuneful, raging and rocking like a mother, this song sets up an hour and a half of going down swinging.
This leads into a lean and mean runthrough of hits and favorite album tracks, from the nuevo-rock atmospherics of “My Songs Know What You Did in the Dark” to the sing-along thud of “This Ain’t a Scene, It’s an Arms Race.” The group shows off its pop chops on titles like “Thanks For the Mmrs” (Memories) and the stunning “Dance, Dance.” Lesser known tracks like “The Phoenix” and “Thriller” (no, not the Michael Jackson song) show off the band’s deep back catalog..
It’s not hard to notice that many of their best, tightest songs came from their first two albums. However, it is gratifying how well the whole set holds together. Fall Out Boy may be taking a winding road in their career, but they still can put on one hell of a show.
Jay S. Jacobs
Copyright ©2016 PopEntertainment.com. All rights reserved. Posted: December 1, 2016.