Review Summary: It's important to note that on Save Rock and Roll, Fall Out Boy are doing anything but that.
For the last three years, Fall Out Boy have been on indefinite hiatus, but in all honesty that isn’t very long. Most bands often tend to go on hiatus for longer periods of time. Regardless of the length of time a band chooses to go on hiatus for, fans around the world rejoiced when Fall Out Boy decided to pick up their instruments and start making music as a band again. If the band reuniting wasn’t enough to get fans riled up, the announcement of their new album, Save Rock and Roll
was. With an album name like that, I’d say it’s easy for a fan of the band to get pretty excited. One can only envision and express a generous amount of excitement for the music that the band will produce on the album So, now that the Save Rock
and Roll is finally here, what has Fall Out Boy been up to the last few years since Folie a Deux
? Writing pop music, apparently.
It’s important to note that on Save Rock
and Roll, Fall Out Boy are doing anything but that. Instead of returning to form and being the Fall Out Boy that people know and love, the band completely shifts their sound into a very accessible mainstream pop record. This change however, will not be very welcome from fans who have followed Fall Out Boy throughout the years. If you're an avid listener of music that is on the radio, then this album is for you. From opening track, “The Phoenix,“ to the closer, “Save Rock and Roll,” the album is a mess. Brimming with an array of electronics, the album is anything but rock and roll with its absence of catchy guitar hooks and sing-along choruses. A return to form might have been the best thing for Fall Out Boy to do on this album instead of suffering through an identity crisis and alienating their fanbase further. It is a shame that the band have decided to go this route with the music they make, because they have proven before that they can garner a lot of attention making catchy, mainstream pop-punk records.
Now, a change in sound will certainly divide their fanbase, and of course people will argue that the new Fall Out Boy are just evolving and trying to progress their sound. However, besides a few catchy tracks, it’s not even ‘good’ pop for the most part. It’s mostly standard radio pop that most people will listen to a couple of times and then forget about. Sure, it has its big features like Big Sean and Elton John, but none of the tracks mentioned are executed well. Big Sean’s verse in “The Mighty Fall” is so annoying and brainless that it manages to ruin the song with lines like “hell yeah I’m a dick girl, addicted to you.
” I won’t even go into Courtney Love’s feature on the album. I think the beginning with her saying “it’s Courtney Bitch
” is more than enough. Elton John and Patrick Stump singing in unison on “Save Rock and Roll” doesn’t come off very pleasant to the ears either. Its huge, anthemic ending tries to end the album on a good note, but ends up making it all fall flat on its ass. The only feature worth mentioning is Foxes’ on “Just One Yesterday.” Stump and Foxes harmonize really well and make the track shine just a little. For the most part, the lyrics aren’t that good at all. The album has only one redeeming quality throughout, and that is Stump's progression as a vocalist. On Save Rock
and Roll Stump Sounds very relaxed and like he is having fun with the tracks, which is a good thing. He hits the right notes at the right times and makes some of the tracks worth listening to if just a little.
In the end, Save Rock
and Roll is your average pop record at best. It’s enjoyable to a certain degree, but it’s also not the best thing to have gone through my ears. Fall Out Boy completely abandon any trace of themselves in order to target an even wider audience. Is it a bad thing? Financially, no. Most of this record will take over radio rock stations and pound your ears until you know every word, and I don’t mean that in a good way. The singles themselves have already been quite successful. However, with Fall Out Boy’s new, poppier sound, they alienate a lot of their supporters who have been with them through the years and sever ties with anything ‘rock’ that helped them craft their sound before. Save Rock
and Roll comes off as more of a joke than a serious album and if anything, only helps butcher the meaning of ‘rock and roll’ instead of trying to ‘save’ it. It seems the only thing that needs saving is Fall Out Boy’s music.