Purveyors of fine pop-punk Fall Out Boy have emerged from the returning glory of their comeback album Save Rock and Roll in order to present a brand new album for listeners, at the start of 2015. The band — Patrick Stump, Pete Wentz, Andy Hurley, and Joe Trohman — are back with a bang for new record American Beauty/American Psycho.
The album itself seems much of a return to form from the boys — Save Rock and Roll — was certainly shades more anthemic and explosive than their back catalogue or material, and American Beauty/American Psycho is a more subdued but more cohesive return to their punk-pop sound. ‘Irresistible’, their hook-filled opener is a triumphant way to kick off proceedings, and if
Lead singles ‘Centuries’ and the title track, are boisterous and fun riots, the latter engaging in some 90s grunge-rock sounds to great effect. ‘Fourth of July’, a classic anthem with a memorable ‘fireworks’ refrain, is set to become the soundtrack to a lot of Independence Day barbecues, while ‘The Kids Aren’t Alright’ is an ode to being a less-than-perfect teenager set to some alternative-pop beats, and ‘Uma Thurman’ is a dancier tune.
Largely the songs on American Beauty/American Psycho are solid and dependable, if occasionally a little bit generic by their own standards. ‘Novocaine’, a pounding irreverent number slots in easily amongst their more dancefloor-orientated records, while ‘Favourite Record’ is a romantic slice of midtempo rock that will sends listeners swooning. The mood largely stays upbeat and energised, sonically if not lyrically, throughout the record, with only ‘Jet Pack Blues’ acting as a downbeat ballad.
In Save Rock and Roll, Fall Out Boy made a glorious return to the pop-punk anthems they always had within them. While American Beauty/American Psycho is in some ways a regression back to their earlier material, it’s also a jumping board for them to take further sonic risks with their material and their talent, something which Messers Stump, Wentz, and co. have in exuberant, undeniable abundance.