Fall Out Boy came to the pop-punk/alternative era in the early 2000s, and the music world was forever changed. It's not as though they were the only ones who made this kind of music; no, it was the fact that they spoke so well to a wide audience, especially to me.
I hadn't really gotten into Fall Out Boy until their re-debute, straight out of hiatus album "Save Rock and Roll" was released in 2013, but I knew far more of their songs than I thought I did. After thinking about it (and listening to all of their albums), I decided to make a list of seven songs that perfectly described human nature.
1. "I Don't Care"
This song came off of their album Folie A Deux, which, when translated, means, "the madness of two," or something very similar to that. This song, for me, epitomizes the attitude that men and women should have as an underlying structure to their every day life: "I don't care what you think, just as long as it's about me."
It could also just be the grandest of all middle fingers to the ex-lover talking crap to their new lover about them. Whichever approach you take for this song, it's still a grand anthem, if nothing else.
2. "This Ain't A Scene, It's An Arms Race"
This song, truthfully, has no meaningful message or moral to the story. It's just a song about the band trying to get by in an industry where they could very well be knocked off at any moment. They're trying to survive while also trying to make music that is not the same as Panic! At The Disco, who also share in the same genre of music.
3. "The Kids Aren't Alright"
Let's be real: This song is off their newest album "American Beauty/American Psycho," and, for me, is the best song on the entire album.
This song delves into the value of friendship, while acknowledging that kids these days just aren't alright--whether they are 10, 17, or even 30. It's alright to not be alright, things happen; whether it's parents making mistakes as parents, your friends or significant others making mistakes at being friends and significant others, or even you making mistakes in life. This song proclaims that you'll always have that one friend and that you're not always going to be okay.
4. "Sugar, We're Going Down"
"Sugar, We're Going Down" is a classic song by FOB from "From Under the Cork Tree" that epitomizes either being stuck in the friend zone, or being put there after a relationship gets weird. Based on the lyrics, it seems to be more of the latter, than the former. However you may choose to interpret it, you can't deny that this is somewhat about a poor boy or girl getting left at the curb by someone they really thought they could see themselves with. And that's just sad, honestly. But, nevertheless, this is a good song for really getting out your feelings about someone and having them thrown back at you while that someone goes out with someone else, especially with lines like "I'm just a notch in your bedpost, but you're just a line in a song."
5. "Disloyal Order of Water Buffaloes"
This song comes off of Folie A Deux, and it really tells the story of heartbreak, even in it's most extreme of forms.
Heartbreak is a terrible thing to have to overcome, especially when it's a hard heartbreak. Lines like "Boycott love, detox just to retox" become more and more real once you realize the things you put up with in your partner only to have it all go down the drain at the breakup.
If you're really desperate for a post-breakup song from Fall Out Boy, I couldn't fathom not suggesting this song. It might just fit the criteria for a heartless heartbreak like no other song could.
7. "Young Volcanoes"
Alas, the last song: "Young Volcanoes" comes off of Fall Out Boy's re-"debute" album "Save Rock And Roll," and it screams "freedom."
This song is an anthem for all of us who are overcoming things, who are living through things, and who are rising above everything in our way. "Young Volcanoes" has become my go-to song for when I feel like I'm being overrun by life's daily struggles. Lines like "before it has begun, we've already won" help lift me back up when I'm feeling down.
After all, we are wild--we're free, we're winning, and that's all that matters. And our successes will overflow, and everyone will know it.
Patrick Stump and Fall Out Boy knew exactly what they were doing when writing these songs. I don't know how they could capture the human experience so perfectly in six songs, but they did, and we'll forever be grateful for that.