Before 's From Under the Cork Tree they were just another pop-punk unit from suburban Chicago happy to break even at shows with gas money. Next thing anyone knew, they were headlining arenas and being heralded as the new face of pop-punk alongside their peers in My Chemical Romance. It was a position that never Fall Out Boy - Infinity On High to rest easy with the guys, and because of this, Infinity on High seems a bit conflicted.
Fall Out Boy wants to charm everyone here. They want to prove themselves to critics by moving past the confines of emo, allowing a love of all things pop to come right to the forefront. Yet they also want to resonate directly with those day-one fans who may long for the intimate VFW shows of yesterday. This disparity makes points of the record seem awkward, and for the first time, the band appears to over-think things. Pete Wentz 's lyrics are oftentimes resentful, full of fame-induced angst, and really emphasize his need to drive home his position that stardom has not changed the band.
So it's in weird contrast to these sentiments that Jay-Z is the one opening the album and calling out haters who said Fall Out Boy - Infinity On High would fail. Eminem & 50 Cent - DeLuxe Collection MP3 glorification of their celebrity abruptly switches into Patrick Stump stating pleading?
So the results are hit-and-miss. The Maroon 5 -ish "I'm Like a Lawyer It's ill-fitting, a notion that continues in cuts like the soft rock piano of "Golden" and the airy "The After Life of the Party. So it's not to say the pop explosion that Fall Out Boy - Infinity On High Infinity on High is all bad. Even the studio extravagances -- multiple producers Babyface and Butch Walker handle a few outside Neil Avron and decadent layers of horns, string sections, and choirs -- don't detract from its overall enjoyability.
Yet unlike My Chemical Romancewho knew exactly what they wanted in the grand theatrics of 's Welcome to the Black Parade and completely went for it without apology, Fall Out Boy is at odds. Previously, they could easily skip around with pop baggage, hardcore tension, cunning wordplay, and infectious melodies without losing their edge.
Now they just seem too self-aware. Don't misunderstand: once Infinity on High sinks in, it's indeed a fun record. But for a band that was once so self-assured and able to utilize its talents so compellingly, the album is regrettably haphazard. Fall Out Boy may hate people who "dissect us 'til this doesn't mean a thing anymore," but in trying to appeal to all of them, they lost something unique along the way.
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