Fall Out Boy

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Fall Out Boy

Fall Out Boy live in 2006.
Background information
OriginWilmette, Illinois, United States
GenresPop punk, alternative rock, pop rock, emo
Years active2001–2009 (on hiatus)
LabelsIsland (2004-present)
Fueled By Ramen (2003-2004)
Uprising Records (2002)
Associated actsArma Angelus, Project Rocket, Racetraitor, Birthright, Black Cards, The Damned Things, With Knives, Enabler
Websitefalloutboyrock.com
Members
Patrick Stump
Pete Wentz
Joe Trohman
Andy Hurley
Past members
Mike Pareskuwicz
T.J. Kunasch
 
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Fall Out Boy

Fall Out Boy live in 2006.
Background information
OriginWilmette, Illinois, United States
GenresPop punk, alternative rock, pop rock, emo
Years active2001–2009 (on hiatus)
LabelsIsland (2004-present)
Fueled By Ramen (2003-2004)
Uprising Records (2002)
Associated actsArma Angelus, Project Rocket, Racetraitor, Birthright, Black Cards, The Damned Things, With Knives, Enabler
Websitefalloutboyrock.com
Members
Patrick Stump
Pete Wentz
Joe Trohman
Andy Hurley
Past members
Mike Pareskuwicz
T.J. Kunasch

Fall Out Boy is an American pop punk band from Wilmette, Illinois, formed in 2001. The band consists of vocalist/guitarist Patrick Stump, bassist Pete Wentz, guitarist Joe Trohman, and drummer Andy Hurley. The members originally played in local underground hardcore bands before forming Fall Out Boy. With Pete Wentz as the band's primary lyricist and Patrick Stump as the primary composer, Fall Out Boy broke out of the underground music scene and reached mainstream success with their major label album From Under the Cork Tree. Released in 2005 as the follow-up to their 2003 debut Take This to Your Grave, the album won several awards and achieved double platinum status after selling more than 2.5 million albums in the United States, and with top ten singles "Sugar, We're Goin Down" and "Dance, Dance."

In 2007, Fall Out Boy released their third album Infinity on High, to major chart success, debuting at number one on the Billboard 200 and selling 260,000 copies in its first week, with top five chartings worldwide. It contained the hits "This Ain't a Scene, It's an Arms Race" and "Thnks fr th Mmrs." The group released Folie à Deux in 2008 and further evolved their musical palette. The group announced an indefinite hiatus in late 2009, stating that they have not broken up, rather that the members are taking a rest and engaging in various side projects. Stump released a solo album called Soul Punk in 2011, Wentz formed Black Cards, while Hurley and Trohman formed The Damned Things and have since respectively moved onto With Knives and Enabler. Fall Out Boy was ranked the 93rd Best Artist of the 2000–10 decade by Billboard.[1]

Contents

History

Early years (2001–2002)

Fall Out Boy was formed in early 2001 by friends Pete Wentz and Joe Trohman, who had played in various hardcore punk bands in the Chicago area. Inspired by bands they grew up listening to, such as Green Day, Descendents, and The Smiths, the pair decided to start their own band.[2] Trohman met high schooler Patrick Stump in a Borders Bookstore.[3] Stump introduced himself to Trohman when he overheard him talking about the band Neurosis, in which they shared a mutual interest.[3] Stump auditioned as a drummer, but the discovery of his impressive vocal range led to his placement as the lead vocalist.[4] Ben Rose was the drummer for the band's first line-up although he shortly left. Several line-up changes in the rhythm guitar and drumming positions would follow before drummer Andy Hurley joined, with three of the four founding members the current members.

The band was nameless for their first two shows. They decided that the audience should decide, and at the end of their second show they asked the audience to yell out their ideas for a name. One audience member suggested "Fallout Boy",[3][5] a reference to the sidekick of the Radioactive Man from The Simpsons[2][6] (which the band performed the closing theme song for in the 2009 episode "Lisa the Drama Queen"). The following year, the band debuted with a self-released demo and followed it up with the May 28, 2002 release of Project Rocket / Fall Out Boy split EP with Project Rocket, on the small independent label Uprising Records.

Take This to Your Grave (2003–2004)

The group released a mini-LP, Fall Out Boy's Evening Out with Your Girlfriend, on Uprising in 2003.[7] The album was recorded in two days in early 2002 and was released against the band's wishes. During this period the band played small shows as part of the indie rock underground Chicago music scene, before any mainstream success.

Following the release of their mini-album, the band saw a lineup change with the addition of Andy Hurley (formerly of Racetraitor) on drums and Stump picking up guitar, completing the current four-piece band. During this time, the band often played local shows at The Knights of Columbus Hall in Arlington Heights, Illinois, the site of their "Dead on Arrival" video.[8] The same year, after signing to indie label Fueled by Ramen, they released their first full-length album and second studio effort, Take This to Your Grave, on May 6, 2003. To record a proper debut, the band received an advance from major label Island Records which came with a right of first refusal for Island on Fall Out Boy's next album.[9] With financing in place, the band recorded Take This to Your Grave at the Butch Vig-owned Smart Studios in Madison, Wisconsin, with Sean O'Keefe as the producer.[9] The album has been credited with earning the band's first significant fan base, as well as some minor commercial success. Fall Out Boy extensively toured all year long at small venues, and earnt opening acts for bands in the scene such as Less Than Jake, Yellowcard, Taking Back Sunday and blink-182.

For Take This to Your Grave, Stump collaborated with Wentz on the lyrics. Wentz recalled that "Take This To Your Grave was very reactionary. It was like this person does this to you."[10] During the making of the album, the band members slept on the floor of a stranger's house for two weeks. The group ran out of money halfway through the process, so they asked the studio which provided them with soda to give them small amounts of food instead.[11] Fall Out Boy's goal with Grave was to make an album that was as "seamless and good from song to song" as Saves the Day's Through Being Cool.[12] With singles "Grand Theft Autumn/Where Is Your Boy" and "Saturday" receiving video airplay on FUSE, mtvU and Target's in-store video stream and radio airplay across the country, the album sold very well and was eventually certified Gold by the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) for shipments of 500,000 copies,[13] but only after the success of the band's next album, From Under the Cork Tree.

In mid-2003, as part of their deal with Fueled By Ramen, Fall Out Boy signed with major label Island Records which is a part of the mainstream label Island Def Jam Music Group, along with Def Jam Records. This was after the group picked up the option for their next album. In the meantime of recording their mainstream debut, the band released the acoustic EP/DVD My Heart Will Always Be the B-Side to My Tongue through Fueled by Ramen on May 18, 2004. It debuted at No. 153 on the Billboard 200, the band's first entry on the chart.[14] The two-disc set included more acoustic performances and a fan photo gallery.[7]

From Under the Cork Tree (2005–2006)

With bassist Pete Wentz as the band's primary lyricist, and vocalist and guitarist Patrick Stump the primary composer, Fall Out Boy began work on a follow-up to Take This to Your Grave in late 2004. However, the group suffered a setback in February 2005 after Wentz's anxieties about creating a new record culminated in a suicide attempt.[10] Wentz explained, "It was overwhelming. I was either totally anxious or totally depressed. It is particularly overwhelming when you are on the cusp of doing something very big and thinking that it will be a big flop. I was racked with self-doubt."[10] After undergoing therapy, Wentz joined the rest of the band and headed to Burbank, California to record the album. Fall Out Boy rose to mainstream success with their Island major label album, From Under the Cork Tree.[7] Released on May 3, 2005, it debuted on the US Billboard 200 at No. 9, selling over 68,000 copies in its first week. It marked a lengthy stay of 77 weeks on the charts, logging 19 weeks in the top 20. The album achieved great commercial success and was certified double platinum after selling more than 2.5 million albums in the United States alone,[10][15] and it has sold over three million copies worldwide, making it the band's best-selling album.

From Under the Cork Tree was bolstered by the hit lead single "Sugar, We're Goin Down" which peaked at No. 8 on the Billboard Hot 100 and at No. 6 on the defunct Billboard Pop 100. The song spent five weeks in the top 10 and logged 20 weeks in the top 20. Receiving heavy airplay rotation at both Pop and Alternative stations, it charted at No. 3 on the Modern Rock Charts[16] and exposed the band to a new, mainstream audience via the radio and internet. It was a mainstay on the Hot 100, spending 42 weeks on the chart before it was retired. The music video reached number one on MTV's TRL, where it was retired on August 26, 2005. The video won the MTV2 Award at the 2005 MTV Video Music Awards, prompting a huge new interest and surge in sales. The song has sold over two million copies and is certified double platinum by the RIAA.[17][18] The band was nominated for Best New Artist at the 2006 Grammy Awards.

The second single released from the album, "Dance, Dance", became Fall Out Boy's second top 10 single when it peaked at No. 9 on the Hot 100 and stayed in the top 20 for 14 weeks. It reached No. 6 on the Pop 100, becoming the band's highest charting single in terms of airplay when it reached No. 2 on the Modern Rock Charts.[16] It contributed to Fall Out Boy's breakthrough mainstream success through heavy radio play. The music video for the song premiered on TRL on October 11, 2005; it soon also reached number one and was later retired on January 17, 2006. The third and last single commissioned from the album, "A Little Less Sixteen Candles, a Little More "Touch Me"", was much less popular than both prior singles, but still managed to peak at No. 65 on the Hot 100[16] and hit the top position twice on TRL, retiring on June 6, 2006.

In support of From Under the Cork Tree, Fall Out Boy headlined extensive tours around the world and performed at music festivals in 2005 and 2006, including the third Nintendo Fusion Tour in the fall of 2005, joining The Starting Line, Motion City Soundtrack, Boys Night Out, and Panic! at the Disco on a 31 city tour.[19] Due to its increased success from their MTV Video Music Award, the group headlined the Black Clouds and Underdogs Tour, a pop punk event that featured The All-American Rejects, Well-Known Secret, Hawthorne Heights, and From First to Last. The tour also featured The Hush Sound for half of the tour and October Fall for half. They played to 53 dates in the US, Canada, and the UK.[20]

Infinity on High and Live in Phoenix (2007)

After taking a two month long break following the band’s Black Clouds and Underdogs tour in promotion of their 2005 album From Under the Cork Tree, Fall Out Boy returned to the studio to begin work on a follow-up effort.[21] The band began writing songs for the new album while touring, and intended to quickly make a new album in order to keep momentum in the wake of its breakthrough success.[22] In early 2007, Fall Out Boy released their fourth studio album, Infinity on High, as their second release on major label Island. The album marked a departure in Fall Out Boy’s sound in which the band implemented a diverse array of musical styles including funk, R&B, and flamenco.[21][23] As reported by Billboard, Fall Out Boy "drifts further from its hardcore punk roots to write increasingly accessible pop tunes," a slight departure from the group's previous more pop punk sound predominant on their 2003 effort, Take This to Your Grave.[24]

Infinity's first week was a major success and was the band's biggest selling week, selling 260,000 copies to debut at No. 1 on the US Billboard 200[25][26] and inside the top five worldwide. This charting was spurred by the lead single "This Ain't a Scene, It's an Arms Race", which reached No. 2 in both the US and UK as well as the top five in many other countries. On the band's decision to pick the song as the first single, Wentz commented "There may be other songs on the record that would be bigger radio hits, but this one had the right message."[27] "Thnks fr th Mmrs", the second single peaked just outside the top 10 at No. 11 on the strength of sales and popular radio play, and went on to sell over two million copies in the US.[28] It found its greatest success in Australia where it charted at No. 3. In 2007, Fall Out Boy placed at No. 9 in the Top Selling Digital Artists chart with 4,423,000 digital tracks sold, according to Nielsen SoundScan.[29] The album itself has sold over two million copies worldwide[30] and subsequently went RIAA Platinum.[31]

Fall Out Boy then headlined the 2007 Honda Civic Tour to promote the album. Though the tour was initially postponed due to personal issues,[32] it would take place with +44, Cobra Starship, The Academy Is... and Paul Wall as supporting acts. The band also headlined the Young Wild Things Tour, an international arena tour featuring Gym Class Heroes, Plain White T's and Cute Is What We Aim For.[33] Inspired by Maurice Sendak's 1963 children's book Where the Wild Things Are, the concert tour and included sets designed by artist Rob Dobi containing images from the book. Commenting on the decision to incorporate elements from the book, Fall Out Boy bassist Pete Wentz explained "Where the Wild Things Are is a great narrative. It encapsulates pretty much every FOB song ever written: You know, tantrums and monster islands and all."[33]

A CD and DVD of live material recorded during a June 22, 2007, concert at Phoenix's Cricket Wireless Pavilion, a date of the Honda Civic Tour, was released on April 1, 2008. Of note, the album, simply called Live in Phoenix, contains a new studio recording covering Michael Jackson's "Beat It" with John Mayer as a guest guitarist.[34] The song premiered for the first time on Wentz's site Friends or Enemies,[35] and was released as a single on March 25, 2008. Following its release, it debuted at No. 22 on the Billboard Hot 100 and peaked at No. 19. On March 18, Fall Out Boy revealed plans to play a show in Antarctica so they would in the Guinness Book of World Records be the only band to play a concert on all seven continents in less than nine months. However, weather conditions prevented them from flying to Antarctica.[36] Instead, Wentz and Stump went on to break the world record for the most interviews conducted by a duo in a 24-hour period, setting the mark at seventy-four.[37]

Folie à Deux and Greatest Hits (2008–2009)

On December 16, 2008, the band released their fifth studio album, Folie à Deux, as a follow-up to their 2007 effort Infinity on High. Fall Out Boy further evolved their sound and took a new musical direction for the record. Folie debuted and peaked at No. 8 on the Billboard 200 with first week sales of 150,000 units. The album was certified gold for shipments of 500,000 copies, but commercially performed less than stellar in comparison to Infinity on High. The band collaborated with an extensive list of guest artists including Elvis Costello, Lil Wayne, Brendon Urie of Panic! at the Disco, Gabe Saporta of Cobra Starship, Travis McCoy of Gym Class Heroes, Alex DeLeon of The Cab, William Beckett of The Academy Is..., Debbie Harry of Blondie, and Pharrell Williams.

The lead single preceding the album, "I Don't Care", was released on September 3, 2008 to iTunes, and was No. 68 on Rolling Stone's list of the 100 Best Songs of 2008.[38] Receiving much less radio play and interest than the band's prior hit single releases ("Sugar, We're Goin Down", "Dance, Dance", "This Ain't a Scene, It's an Arms Race") from previous albums, "I Don't Care" peaked at No. 21 on the Hot 100. The second single to receive radio play was "America's Suitehearts", released on December 8, 2008.

In January 2009, Fall Out Boy announced they would embark on the Believers Never Die Tour Part Deux Tour with supporting acts All Time Low, Hey Monday, Cobra Starship, Metro Station and 50 Cent and to support the Folie à Deux release. Its name is based on their 2004 Believers Never Die Tour. The group also performed alongside Kanye West and Kid Rock at the Youth Ball for the inauguration of President Barack Obama.[39] They also played for TV performances, including the 2009 Toyota Concert Series on the Today Show on May 22.[40]

On April 27, 2009 an EP was released on iTunes, titled America's Suitehearts: Remixed, Retouched, Rehabbed and Retoxed. It contains a remix from Blink-182 bassist Mark Hoppus. Fall Out Boy, along with Weezer, were the supporting acts for Blink-182's summer reunion tour in 2009.[41]

Fall Out Boy released a greatest hits compilation album titled Believers Never Die – Greatest Hits on November 17, 2009 soon after their tour with Blink-182 ended. It includes all the band's songs previously released as singles as well as two new songs and two rarities. One of the new songs is the full version of "Alpha Dog", which was released as the only single. It was a track that was previously released as a demo on the Welcome to the New Administration mixtape, and the other ""From Now On We're Enemies"". The album artwork, created by Daniel Danger,[42] features two skeletons hugging; a reference to the skeletons found outside of Mantua, Italy who were found buried together while locked in an embrace.[43] There are also numerous references to the band's career and previous works.

On November 20, 2009, the four band members announced they will be taking an indefinite hiatus, saying they were unsure of the future of the band. Bassist and lyricist Pete Wentz has said that his personal reason for taking a break is that he feels that his name and marriage to pop singer Ashlee Simpson had become a hindrance for the band. He added: "I think the world needs a little less Pete Wentz". The band has not broken up, but are instead on an indefinite break, "decompressing" as Wentz stated it.[44] On Tumblr, Stump wrote, "I am confident that we’ll have a record out sooner than later but there are currently no plans, no “2 years,” no “6 years,” no parameters. It might happen later than any of that, it might happen sooner. It is literally, as it’s always been, an indefinite hiatus. We never did breakup, we’re still friends, and we still would like to make music together [...] I’ll see all of you if/when the band works on a new record or tour. Until then though, I’m just gonna shut up about it and focus on Soul Punk and hopefully ongoing tour."[45] The members have also cited that they have been worked out from the band's continuous writing, recording and touring schedule.

Hiatus and solo careers

After the announcement of the band's hiatus, Fall Out Boy members moved on to musical side projects that they felt they could not participate in while Fall Out Boy was active. Guitarist Joe Trohman and drummer Andy Hurley teamed up with Keith Buckley and Josh Newton from Every Time I Die and Scott Ian and Rob Caggiano of Anthrax to form the heavy metal supergroup The Damned Things.[46] The band released their debut album Ironiclast in December 2010. Hurley also plays in the hardcore band Burning Empires,[47] as well as other hardcore punk/heavy metal bands. He continues to manage his record label, Fuck City.[48] With Damned Things on hiatus as Anthrax and Every Time I Die members are on new album cycles, Trohman formed With Knives and Hurley drums in the hardcore band Enabler.

In 2010, Patrick Stump began producing his debut solo album, titled Soul Punk[49] and released it on October 18, 2011. He has released a remix of an album track called "This City" to iTunes as the album's first single and created a music video for it. During his production of Soul Punk, Stump released his debut 6-song EP titled Truant Wave as a digital download to iTunes on February 22, 2011. Soul Punk features no guest musicians as Stump plays all the instruments on the album, as well as writing all lyrics, composing all music, and self-producing. He jokingly considers the album a "big, convoluted way to get me to play drums again, because I really just miss playing drums".[50]

In July 2010, Pete Wentz, with singer Bebe Rexha, formed the ska/electropop band Black Cards, a project inspired by a discussion Wentz had with producer Sam Hollander about mashing up ska, dance and reggae with 80s British rock and pop to create a new experimental sound.[51] After several failed attempts to produce an album, Rexha left the band in January 2012 and the group reshuffled, announcing plans to release a mixtape, write new material, and continue to remix tracks by other artists. A remix mixtape of popular artists was released online, and Black Cards (Wentz, Spencer Peterson) is now a DJ duo. Wentz continues to manage his clothing label Clandestine Industries, record label Decaydance Records, film production company Bartskull films and two bars in Chicago and Barcelona. Wentz also acts as spokesperson of UNICEF's Tap Project, a fundraising project that helps bring clean drinking water to people worldwide.[52] Wentz has also expressed his interest in working on new music projects, though he hopes to move outside the limitations of the common 4/4 time signature of pop music. Commenting on this, Wentz stated, "I have ideas that extend beyond [a 4/4 time signature] and I guess I scratched a lottery ticket enough that, because of my band, people let me do these (other) ideas, and some of them are good, some of them are not so good."[52]

Musical style

While widely considered to be a pop punk band,[53][54] Fall Out Boy has also been described as pop rock[55] and emo[56] and cites emo group The Get Up Kids as an influence among many other bands. When interviewed for a retrospective article in Alternative Press at the time The Get Up Kids disbanded in 2005, Pete Wentz stated that "Fall Out Boy would not be a band if it were not for The Get Up Kids."[57] Early in the band's career, when Jared Logan was producing their debut album, he asked bassist Pete Wentz what sound the band desired for recording. Wentz responded by "handing over the first two New Found Glory records".[58] The band acknowledges its hardcore punk roots as an influence; all four members were involved in the Chicago hardcore scene before joining Fall Out Boy.[10] Wentz described the band's affiliation with the genre by saying "I think the interesting thing is that we are all hardcore kids that are writing pop music...It gives us a different style because at our core we are always hardcore. That aspect is always going to be evident in the music. We are hardcore kids that couldn't quite cut it as hardcore kids."[10] He referred to Fall Out Boy's genre as "softcore": hardcore punk mixed with pop sensibility.[10] Lead singer Patrick Stump, however, was influenced by artists such as Prince, David Bowie and Michael Jackson.

Fall Out Boy's albums Take This to Your Grave and From Under the Cork Tree are both said to have pop punk as well as punk rock sounds and influences,[59][60] and Infinity on High features a wide range of styles and instrumentation, including orchestral and choral arrangements ("Thnks fr th Mmrs" and "You're Crashing, But You're No Wave") and a slower piano ballad ("Golden"). R&B influences on Infinity on High are on songs such as "This Ain't a Scene, It's an Arms Race" and two of the album's tracks are produced by R&B singer/producer Babyface. On Folie à Deux, Fall Out Boy continues to evolve their sound, with less of a pop punk sound and increasing the use of piano ("What a Catch, Donnie", "Headfirst Slide into Cooperstown on a Bad Bet", and "20 Dollar Nose Bleed"), synthesizers, and guest artists. The band also shows a number of influences, with the opening track borrowing a chord sequence from The Who song "Baba O'Riley".[61] The group has worked with many producers and artists, including The Neptunes, Timbaland, Lil Wayne and Kanye West, the latter of which Patrick Stump described as "the Prince of his generation."[62]

A central part of Fall Out Boy's sound is rooted in the band's lyrics, mainly penned by bassist Pete Wentz, who commonly uses irony and other literary devices to narrate personal experience and stories.[59] He draws inspiration from authors such as Charles Bukowski, Ernest Hemingway, and JT LeRoy, as well as rappers such as Lil Wayne, who he described as his primary influence while writing Infinity on High.[63][64] On Fall Out Boy's earlier works, Wentz wrote primarily about love and heartbreak.[65] Themes addressed on From Under the Cork Tree include narcissism and megalomania, while many tracks on Infinity on High discuss the ups and downs of fame.[63][66][67] While writing Folie à Deux, he explored moral dilemmas and societal shortcomings, as well as concepts such as trust, infidelity, responsibility, and commitment.[68] While the album does contain political overtones, the band wanted to avoid being overt about these themes, leaving many lyrics open to interpretation for listeners.[68]

Band members

Current members
Former members
  • Mike Pareskuwicz – drums, percussion (2001–2003)
  • T.J. "Racine" Kunasch – guitars, backing vocals (2001–2003)

Discography

Studio albums

Awards

A select list of Fall Out Boy's awards and nominations.

YearNominated workAwardResult
2005"Sugar, We're Goin Down"MTV Video Music Award - MTV2 AwardWon
2006"Dance, Dance"MuchMusic Video Award - People's Choice: Favorite International GroupWon
"Sugar, We're Goin Down"Kerrang! Award for Best SingleNominated
"Sugar, We're Goin Down"Kerrang! Award - Best VideoWon
"Dance, Dance"Teen Choice Award - Rock TrackWon
"Dance, Dance"Teen Choice Award - SingleWon
Fall Out BoyTeen Choice Award - Rock GroupWon
Fall Out BoyMTV Video Music Award - Viewer's ChoiceWon
Fall Out BoyGrammy Award - Best New ArtistNominated
2007"This Ain't a Scene, It's an Arms Race"Kerrang! Award - Best VideoWon
"Thnks fr th Mmrs"Teen Choice Award - SingleWon
Fall Out BoyTeen Choice Award - Best GroupWon
Fall Out BoyMTV Video Music Award - Best GroupWon
"Thnks fr th Mmrs"Nickelodeon Kids Choice Award - SingleWon
2008""The Take Over, the Breaks Over""MuchMusic Video Award - People's Choice: Favorite International VideoWon
Fall Out BoyTMF Award - Best Live InternationalWon
Fall Out BoyTMF Award - Best Rock InternationalWon
Fall Out BoyTMF Award - Best Alternative InternationalWon
"Beat It"MTV Video Music Award - Best Rock VideoNominated
Fall Out BoyTeen Choice Award - Choice Rock GroupNominated
Pete WentzTeen Choice Award - Choice HottiesNominated
2009"I Don't Care"NRJ Music Award - Best International BandNominated

Legacy

The band was referenced on the popular stop-motion sketch comedy series Robot Chicken in the season three episode's "More Blood, More Chocolate" sketch "Rape Ghost".

References

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External links

Media related to Fall Out Boy at Wikimedia Commons