28th March 2023

Live review: Fall Out Boy at Band on the Wall

Fall Out Boy play a special intimate warm-up show at Manchester’s Band on the Wall, making for a night we’ll remember for centuries
Live review: Fall Out Boy at Band on the Wall
Photo: Imogen Mingos @ The Mancunion

I have been a Fall Out Boy fan for as long as I can remember so getting to watch them live at Band on the Wall was one of the best experiences of my life. It took a hot second to process the opportunity that I had and with all the expectations too, what a Wednesday it was! But they did not disappoint at all.

When you picture a Fall Out Boy concert, you presumably think of large venues like the AO Arena or the O2. So there was something almost surreal about watching such a famous band in an intimate venue like Band on the Wall. For once I could hear the jokes told onstage and what random members of the audience shouted. I could feel the bass run through me, I could hear every lyric, breath, and death metal scream.

The atmosphere was incredible all evening. There wasn’t much talking in between songs – instead they played hit after hit but when they did take breaks to engage with the audience, Pete Wentz cracked jokes the whole time. When someone asked him if he wanted a tequila shot, he said “sometimes what you want and what you need is just so different”. He gave a little speech dedicated to Manchester’s “amazing” music scene before pretending they were going to play ‘Wonderwall’.

Wentz came across as very genuine which complimented the intimate venue perfectly; he was candid, saying things like “this is the part where we walk off stage… [but we’re] just going to stay on stage and do the encore”. Well-known bands and beloved artists have the licence to be this frank and open with their audiences which I think everyone appreciated.

Fall Out Boy don’t need any gimmicks or changes in scene or lighting to create an atmosphere. Fans come for one thing and one thing only: the music. Of course, there were lighting changes and near the end there was a disco ball but it was clear that these things weren’t particularly important to the audience. There was no flair for the dramatic but it was a show-stopping performance all the same.

Having been around since 2001 and with eight studio albums, they have a plethora of hits so I went into the concert not knowing what to expect at all; they played some of my absolute favourites like ‘American Beauty/American Psycho’, ‘Uma Thurman’, ‘My Songs Know What You Did in the Dark’, and ‘Centuries’ so I was ecstatic. Maybe it’s just the sign of the horns hand gesture that brings out an energy of its own but it was truly electric the whole night.

Even though they joked about making mistakes and “fucking things up”, every song they played was truly phenomenal. Because they have such a volume of songs and they played non-stop, it did mean that some of the songs almost merged into each other and it made it harder to remember everything they played but I suppose that’s what happens when you have so many hits!

We got a preview of their new album So Much (For) Stardust which was incredible to hear live before it was released. I love their latest song ‘Heartbreak Feels So Good’ – it’s catchy, Patrick Stump‘s iconic vocals deliver, and the lyrics resonate. What more could you want? I’m yet to listen to the rest of their latest album but if all the songs are as good as this and ‘Love From The Other Side’, then I will be very happy!

I’m extremely grateful that I got to watch Fall Out Boy live so thank you to everyone involved – it’s certainly a night I’ll remember…for centuries!

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