Fall Out BoyM A N I A

Island Records/Universal Music
19 January, 2018
5
Hit & Missed

After a significant delay, Fall Out Boy tackle stuttered pop and pulsing rock on their seventh record M A  N   I A. HOLD ME TIGHT OR DON’T is reminiscent of Young Forever with an almost Caribbean feel dancing over the track.

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The problem with M A  N   I A  is that there are too many introspective tracks to keep the record’s pace high enough for a full listen.  Ditto for Sunshine Riptide that devolves into Patrick Stump mumbling as dancehall tries to keep him in check. Champion is a clear fist pumping stadium follow up to omnipresent 2014 single Centuries. The Last of the Real Ones follows that trend too; imagine the jittery lights cascading across a giant audience when the beat kicks in. We’re dropped right into Save Rock and Roll (leaning more towards American Beauty/American Psycho) territory rather than the pop-punk stylings long standing fans may have hoped to see return.

The soul of the band has always been that they’ve kept us in on the secret, but on M A  N   I A they’ve never seemed so far out of reach.

Young and Menace may stutter and start but as always with Fall Out Boy’s more experimental moments, that sick hungover feeling turns into an enticing taste of hair of the dog with each repeat listen. “I’ll stop wearing black when they make a darker colour” during Wilson (Expensive Mistakes) is very YAAAAASSSS but FOB always get a pass with these type of lyrics. Fall Out Boy have always had energy injected into their records but the maximalist sports-highlights are too present here. The soul of the band has always been that they’ve kept us in on the secret, but on M A  N   I A they’ve never seemed so far out of reach.

STANDOUT TRACKS: Young and Menace, Champion, Wilson (Expensive Mistakes)
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