"The last time they had pyrotechnics at the Chicago Theatre, I think the city burned down," Fall Out Boy bassist and new father Pete Wentz told his hometown crowd Tuesday night. Chitown's downtown area may have stood intact after the show, but not for lack of trying on the band's part.
Love 'em or hate 'em, no one can deny that Fall Out Boy know how to put on a spectacle. For 90 minutes, the most famous emo pop quartet ever to blow out of the Windy City entranced with plenty of explosives, black confetti, macabre chandeliers, psychedelic Candy Land-like props, and hip-hop dancers in bear costumes. If not for strategically placed ramps and risers, diminutive rockers Wentz and singer/guitarist Patrick Stump would have been lost completely amidst the visual chaos.
You can't blame the guys for going all out. The show was being filmed for a Fuse TV special that will air Dec. 16 to celebrate the release day of the group's new album, Folie a Deux. The venue's maze-like layout may have confused the teenaged crowd at first, but it didn't take long before they got the hang of dancing, singing along, and shoving each other from their assigned seating.
Breakout hits "Thriller," "Sugar, We're Going Down," and "Dance, Dance" inspired audience shouts in response. And Folie a Deux single "I Don't Care" got fists pumping and high-fives flying across the stately theater, as did new track "Headfirst Slide into Cooperstown on a Bad Bet" and a cover of Michael Jackson's "Beat It."
After a spot-on rendition of "This Ain't a Scene, It's an Arms Race," Wentz issued a good-natured challenge by putting a Ferarri and a private jet on the line in a friendly bet with Stump. The terms? That no one would in the audience know the words to new song "American Suitehearts." But as some of the band's most rabid followers heartily belted out the song's lyrics like they'd been listening to them for years, Wentz had to concede he'd lost.
In the end, Fall Out Boy proved yet again that emo rock is here for good and that Folie a Deux's new songs will enhance its staying power.
GuitaristJoseph Trohman / Photo by Laura Gray
Fall Out Boy's Pete Wentz / Photo by Laura Gray
Vocalist and guitarist Patrick Stump / Photo by Laura Gray
Wentz on the bass / Photo by Laura Gray
Drummer Andrew Hurley / Photo by Laura Gray