Fall Out Boy haven’t visited Australia since vocalist Patrick Stump had baby fat. Since then, their fans have had plenty of time to obsess over them. And they’ve done that extremely well. Fans that showed up hours before the Palace Theatre doors opened were treated to a line of people – young, old, girls and guys – that snaked around the block. Several times.
The Illinois band took the unusual move of choosing a pair of DJs, rather than any bands, to play a support set. The two pink-jacketed ladies knew their audience, playing a mixture of 90s pop and classic rock tunes (as well as the obligatory ‘Smells Like Teen Spirit’) which pleased most, if not all, of the crowd.
As is usually the case though, what the crowd really wanted was Fall Out Boy. Word to the wise: if you thought being in a hardcore band’s mosh pit was hard, trying being in a pit with packs of 20 year old youths who haven’t seen their favourite band together in years. There was a distinct lack of pit etiquette from many of the gig-goers, and one group of girls was so rough that I ended up on the floor having a panic attack. Good times.
If the waiting was hard enough, hearing the opening notes of ‘Thriller’ was ridiculous. As one, the audience lurched forward, and from then on, the pit was a surging, thrashing beast, united in their adulation. The band was in fine form – bassist Pete Wentz had his usual cocky grin on as he played to the adoring audience, and Pat Stump had a jaunty hat on his head. Their voices as they bantered were slightly amused – not surprising when everything they said was greeted with excited cheering.
Being thrown around in the screaming pit, one gets the impression that if the quartet had come on stage wearing pajamas, playing bongos and strumming sticks instead of guitars, most of the crowd would have reacted in exactly the same way.
Regardless, they put on a hell of a show, burning through their greatest hits, including ‘Sophomore Slump or Comeback of the Year’, ‘I Don’t Care’, ‘This Ain’t A Scene, It’s An Arms Race’, ‘Sugar, We’re Goin Down’, and of course, what Wentz and Stump referred to as both America and Australia’s “national anthem”: ‘Grand Theft Autumn/Where Is Your Boy’. They were still a bit rusty, as evidenced by Stump’s slip-up in the chorus of ‘Dance, Dance’, which he laughed off after the song.
Still, all of the boys were on fine form, even if at times the vocals were buried under the instrumental. ‘What a Catch, Donnie’ in particular was quite stirring, with a starry sky effect thrown against the ceiling and the audience members lining the balconies.
They wrapped the show with vowel-deprived encore song ‘Thnks fr th Mmrs’, sending the crowd into a frenzy.
The crowds packing the sold out theatre knew it all, including the cover of Michael Jackson’s ‘Beat It’, and ‘My Songs Know What You Did in the Dark’, the first single from their brand new album, Save Rock and Roll.
That title might strike some as a bit presumptuous from a band labelled as a “emo/pop/punk” band, but the fact remains that each of the band members are very talented as musicians, and know how to put on a show. Time will only tell if Fall Out Boy can save rock and roll, but for the time being, they seem to be content with rocking Melbourne.
Courtesy of tonedeaf.com.au