What do a Grateful Dead album and a book by Bret Easton Ellis have in common? The answer may surprise you.
Their titles grace the cover of Fall Out Boy’s new album, the first but far from last of many pop culture references made throughout the band’s latest effort. “American Beauty/American Psycho” was released in January and has been at the top of the charts for weeks.
The album, while different from Fall Out Boy’s earlier endeavors, still delivers the catchy choruses and polished pop sound that listeners have come to expect from the band. Since its formation in 2001, Fall Out Boy has been one of the biggest names in alternative music, although they took a hiatus beginning in 2009.
In 2013, Fall Out Boy reformed and released a comeback album, “Save Rock and Roll,” proving that the band wasn’t done making music just yet. Since then, Fall Out Boy has been on a tour or in the recording studio almost constantly.
“Centuries” was the first single released, and gave fans some insight as to what the entire record would sound like. The song was quickly drafted for use by ESPN and became something of an anthem during the college football playoffs. This prompted a humble apology from Pete Wentz, Fall Out Boy’s frontman, for its possible overuse, but no one could argue that the song was not up to the job, and we all need a break from Taylor Swift sometimes.
The title track, “American Beauty/American Psycho,” was the second single released by the band, and reassured fans that the rest of the album would be just as upbeat and enjoyable as “Centuries.” Its fast tempo and repetitive lyrics make it similar to other songs on the album, such as “Fourth of July” and “Irresistible.”
The last track on the album, “Twin Skeletons,” is more experimental than the rest of the album, but it pays off, as it is easily one of the catchiest songs on the album.
While the album as a whole seems a lot different from Fall Out Boy’s pre-hiatus albums, many things haven’t changed. The band members are still friends who have retained their garage band sound and their joy in creating music. They may be moving more in the direction of pop music rather than rock music, but that doesn’t make the songs any less enjoyable.
As if two albums and two major U.S. tours over the course of two years weren’t enough to occupy Fall Out Boy, it will be venturing on another U.S. tour this summer. The Boys of Zummer tour, beginning on June 10, is a joint effort with Wiz Khalifa and opener, Hoodie Allen. The tour will stop at Darien Lake Performing Arts Center on June 18.
Although we don’t know what the future holds for Fall Out Boy, one thing is clear: It will be remembered for centuries.
Austin Nagelhout is a senior at Kenmore East High School.