An album that has eaten my brain

Last Sunday, Fall Out Boy’s latest, Folie à Deux (due out Dec 15/16), leaked – and because I’ve been waiting with baited breath, downloading every song they made available on iTunes (American store, but this is the internet, after all… *g*) and pre-ordering a fancy superduper deluxe package, I had no qualms at all to get it. I’ve been listening to it on repeat ever since and still get goosebumps several times every listen…

Favorites: Headfirst Slide Into Cooperstown On A Bad Bet, The (Shipped) Gold Standard, (Coffee’s for Closers), What a Catch, Donnie, 27 – which, funnily enough, all follow one another on the album. But really, I love every single track.

Fall Out Boy - Folie à Deux

Fall Out Boy - Folie à Deux

I’m not a music geek. These are just random thoughts I had while listening. You’ve been warned. 🙂

So Pete wasn’t pulling our leg when he said that there’s no personal laundry being washed on this album – it’s really mostly about the strange, slightly schizophrenic relationships between media and celebrities, celebrities and fans, fans and media, plus some political commentary thrown in. It’s also very reminiscent of 80s bands in many ways. Me likey, me likey a lot, but you knew that already, so let’s get cracking on the details… *g*

Disloyal Order of Water Buffaloes:
Proper start for a FOB album, with the fragile beginning “I’m coming apart at the seams” and then the driving guitar and drums and the catchy singalong chorus: “So boycott love. Detox just to retox. And I’d promise you anything for another shot at life. Imperfect boys with their perfect ploys. Nobody wants to hear you sing about tragedy.”

I Don’t Care:
Do I really have to review that one? C’mon. Perfect headnodder and along-singer/dancer with great lyrics taking shots at popculture and popstardom. And Patrick stretching his voice a bit, the way he frequently does on this album. Have I mentioned that I love that he now sees himself as a singer and (Patrick being all about music) wants to do it properly? “I don’t care what you think as long as it’s about me. The best of us can find happiness in misery.”

She’s My Winona:
Love the “oh oh oh oh” opener and random “oh oh oh”s and “babababa”s in between. Is that Joe sometimes doing the back-up vocals? I don’t know enough about music, but I love the arrangements here, simple but effective. Another one about life and fame: “Hell or glory, I don’t want anything in between. Then came a baby boy with long eyelashes. Daddy said you gotta show the world the thunder.”

America’s Suitehearts:
Next single, this one’s an earworm. Truth be told (and probably a totally unpopular opinion), one of my least favorites from the album (I actually prefer the Suarez remix) – which isn’t saying much, as it’s still awesome. “Let’s hear it for America’s suitehearts. I must confess, I’m in love with my own sins.” That reminds me of blogging, for some reason.

Headfirst Slide Into Cooperstown on a Bad Bet:
Still possibly my favorite song, and not just because oh shit, Patrick’s voice! “I don’t just want to be a footnote in someone else’s happiness” is one of my all-time favorite lyrics. All about fake people and not losing your footing in that world. “I will never end up like him, behind my back I already am. Keep a calendar, this way you will always know, the last time you came through. Oh darling, I know what you’re going through.” And have I mentioned Patrick’s lower range? This was the first time I properly heard it, and oh… *wibbles*

The (Shipped) Gold Standard:
Sounds more like classic FOB, and the chorus gives me goosebumps: “I wanna scream ‘I love you’ from the top of my lungs, but I’m afraid that someone else will hear me. You can only blame your problems on the world for so long before it all becomes the same old song.” Oh, boys, so grown up, it makes my heart smile… Also, the clapping section? LOVE. I kinda think this one’s directed at the fans and the weird relationship the band has with them/us. And aren’t we glad that they’re not accountants? 🙂

(Coffee’s For Closers):
Another one of my favorites. Love the instrumental at the beginning – yay, Andy! 🙂 If they don’t play this in concert, they’re stupid: “Throw your cameras in the air and wave ’em like you just don’t care. I will never believe in anything again. Oh, change will come. Change will come, I will never believe in anything again.” Hello, hymn for the Obama generation, y/n/mfy? I’m still not throwing my camera away, though, sorry, gotta document my life, like the good citizen of the net that I am. *g* And the string bit at the end? Makes me smile. (Also, I’d say that if “What a Catch, Donnie” is Pete getting into Patrick’s head, this one could be Andy.)

What a Catch, Donnie:
Both Pete and Patrick have said that this is their favorite song – and I can’t say I blame them. Because I lovelovelove the lyrics, and I love the quiet melody, and Patrick’s fricking voice once again. “I’ve got troubled thoughts and the self-esteem to match. What a catch, what a catch. And all I can think of is the way I’m the one who charmed the one who gave up on you.” Really showing off both their incredible talents so very well. “They say the captain goes down with the ship – so when the world ends, will God go down with it?” Complete goosebump song for me. And the review of FOB lyrics at the end is made of such much win.

“If home is where the heart is, then we’re all just fucked.” Another total winner, right from the start to the very end. About rockstardom and nostalgia and getting famous. “My mind is a safe and if I keep it then we’ll all get rich. My body is an orphanage, we take everyone in. Doing lines of dust and sweat off last night’s stage, just to feel like you.” Joe’s guitar solo totally takes me back to the 80s – awesomesauce! (And wasn’t there this thing that Pete never thought he’d make it past 27, like Cobain et al.?)

Tiffany Blews:
This is possibly single material, I’d say. The uneven rhythm fits merging into the smooth chorus: “Oh baby, you’re a classic, like a little black dress. But you’ll be faded soon, stuck on a little hot mess.” Patrick sounds more like old-school FOB. I’ve got most trouble understanding the lyrics here (which reminds me of older songs), and there are a number of guest vocals (Lil’ Wayne for one, I’ve read, and I can definitely hear Alex from the Cab). Another one about popstars?

Hi, Pharrell. You can so tell that. “Hurry, hurry, you put my head in such a flurry. Freckle, freckle, what makes you special?” Patrick is once again using his voice as an instrument. And then there’s the blues bit, which is a bit weird – but hey, it’s almost Christmas. I just wish I could understand a word. And have I mentioned the voice yet? *g*

20 Dollar Nose Bleed:
Such a contrast – and hello, Brendon, nice to hear you! Well-matched, this really sounds like a mix of Panic and FOB. The most blatant political commentary of the whole album: “When I look at the man who would be king, goes to the desert, the same war his dad rehearsed. Came back with flags on coffins and said ‘We won, oh we won!'” And then the ending: “Have you ever wanted to disappear?”, and Pete sermonizing over nothing but Andy’s beat. Pure irony, imo.

West Coast Smoker:
Seamless transition from the track before. “Don’t feel bad for the suicidal ass. Gotta kill themselves nine times before they get it right.” Is that Debbie Harris? I’d have thought it was a guy: “Oh hell yes, I’m a nervous wreck. Knock once for the Father, twice for the Son, three times for the Holy Ghost.” What’s with religious metaphors, Pete (there are also quite a lot of those on w.a.m.s.)? And queue heavenly choirs. And a bit of screaming (the only screaming on the album, I think), just for old times sake. *g*

Summary: This is already my favorite album of 2008. Seriously. I wish I had more smrt things to say about it, but this’ll have to do, because I’m such an amateur when it comes to music. I can’t wait for the lyrics to become available – there are many more snippets that I love, and I really want to read them all in context.