Tuesday, March 06, 2007

Selling Out: Fall Out Boy...a one man band?

We won’t get in to any kind of debate whether Fall Out Boy sucks or not. They do suck, so there’s no reason to evaluate their music or their apparent lack of worth to the world of music.

If you didn’t know any better, you’d think that lame dude with the hair in his eyes and the tight pants was the singer because he’s always front and center whenever a photo is snapped. But he’s not. I think he’s the bass player and yet there he is; always pushed to the front because he’s the most popular and the other members of the band are slightly more homely.

That irks me about Fall Out Boy, but that’s not why I’m writing this. The problem I have with these dubiously talented clowns is the obvious double standard that they put forth in their public personas. They act like grown ups and want you to treat them thusly, yet they make music for kids. They’re the Raffi of the emo set.

Now it’s fine if you make music for kids. The Wiggles do it. But you’ll never see the Wiggles pretending to be tough guys; putting themselves out there as serious musicians whose music transcends age. No. The Wiggles make music for kids and they know this. They know you know this.

But Fall Out Boy pretends to be big boys. They want to be taken seriously with their music and will do everything in their power to keep that illusion going. The douche bass player gives 90 interviews a day talking about how crazy he is and “adult.” You’d never see Murray from the Wiggles doing that.

There’s a great line from a Jawbreaker song that goes like this: “Everyone tells me they're crazy / Well crazy people aren't so fucking boring.” That sums these assholes up pretty well. If only they were 1/8 as good as Jawbreaker.

Anyway, the fact that Fall Out Boy is a kid’s band and they don’t admit it does piss me off, but that’s at the heart of why I hate them so much. My main gripe is how a band like this adopts a punk persona, is nothing more than a teeny bopper act and will sell themselves to the highest bidder. Tattoos cover up more than skin with these cunts.

Sure, sure, it’s all about money these days. Yeah, that’s fine. Iggy has his song on a commercial for cruise ships; The Clash had their stuff in car commercials. I had trouble with things like that for awhile, but then I realized in The Clash’s case, Joe Strummer had a family and I’m sure they wanted their future to be secure. Iggy probably never got paid anything in his early days and needed a little bread to get by. Whether he was buying a summer home or putting food on the table, these guys paid their dues; I can’t totally dismiss them for doing it now.

But what gets my balls in a bind is when young artists will sell themselves as quickly as a Colfax Ho who sees the crack man leaving for the night. They can’t wait to sell out. They sign on the dotted line and they gleefully give their songs away like they’re handing their kid over to the local child molester. They got their money, they’ll just make more crappy songs.

I saw a cell phone commercial for the V Cast phone the other night. The commercial shows a near retarded meat head, working out in a gym, listening to Fall Out Boy on his phone. This guy is Fall Out Boy’s worst nightmare but yet probably their best customer. He’s all sweaty from pumping iron, he’s buff and probably can’t decide whether ripping a homo’s arm off or date raping some dumbass that went out with him would make a better Friday night. This guy would beat Fall Out Boy senseless if they walked into his sports bar after only four Coors Lights.

And yet Fall Out Boy is totally fine with having their product (music) associated with this animal. Now obviously bands can’t dictate who can and cannot listen to their music. Lord knows I’ve been to enough shows to see that there are some people who will gravitate toward a band that are not only out of tune with the band’s politics but completely out of line with society’s rules in general. You can’t choose your family or the people who listen to your music apparently.

But you can have a say in how your music is represented. If not, then don’t sign the contract. It’s as easy as that. I read an interview with Fall Out Boy’s douche bass player and he made negative comments about frat boys and jocks and whatnot. They put the image out there they don’t like these people yet they sold their name, image and music to a commercial featuring one of those people. I think this classifies as a classic “sell out.”

“Selling Out” got a bad name in the 90’s when all the alterna-bands went for the cash grab and signed major label deals leaving all the hipsters to snidely cry “sell out” on anyone who wanted a better life for themselves and their family. The cry of “sell out” was so loud and constant that eventually it was tuned out. “Selling out” then went on unimpeded and anyone crying “sell out” was poo-pooed like a liberal calling in to Rush Limbaugh. It became ok to “sell out” because it was uncool to call anyone on it.

Fall Out Boy sold out here big time. They not only sold their song to a completely horrific product but they’ve done damage to their image as well. Some may argue that this is their fan base (meat heads and teenagers), and now they are just coming out of the closet as it were. I will argue that they’ve revealed themselves to not give two shits about the music they’re creating and sell it and themselves to the highest bidder. Remember, you can sell out and still keep it classy. If there’s a product you like or a way you want to be represented, if you’re popular enough (like Fall Out Boy is right now), someone will accommodate you. But that was very far from their minds when they agreed to whore themselves to a cell phone company. That Ho on Colfax thinks this undignified.

Yeah, these creeps will still be able to make music and live comfortably which I’m sure is any musician’s dream, but when their teenage fans grow up and their meathead admirers die from hopefully some horrible death, no one is going to want to listen to their ear poop anymore. Sure they’ll be rich but by catering to kids and Neanderthals now, they won’t have anything left in the tank when the solo album from the shitty bass player comes out. Oh and you know that’s coming soon.

I used to have a lot of anger toward bands like this (I guess I still do). They are essentially boy bands with tattoos that mimic an aggressive style of music while putting their own kid friendly spin on it. I wish them all the success in the world because it must be thrilling to do something you love and get paid loads of money to do it. But if we don’t call a duck a duck here, we’re doomed to be bombarded with shitty groups like this until the end of time. Oh who am I kidding? This will never go away, but with your help maybe we can have the Fall Out Boys and the Good Charlottes moved to kids section in your local record store. Right next to Barney and straight up their own asses.



Bob said...

It's hard to sell out, if you don't have any artistic credibility to begin with. I can't blame these guys for cashing in hard and fast -- not in spite of the fact, but especially because -- their music is so disposable. If you make shitty music, that gravy train is not going to roll for long, so you've gotta milk it like you can. I mean, it's not like their "art" is at stake.

I'd be more concerned about a band whose music actually means something squandering their reputation with some shitty advertisements. But for Fall Out Boy, that's almost the whole point.

If you can fault them for anything, how about selling out their culture? What does it mean to some 14-year-old emo Fall Out Boy fan to have Mr. Meathead pumping iron to one of their songs?

Wait, who gives a shit? Let him get jaded and find some better music.

J Reidy said...

yeah, you bring up two good points that i was unfortunately too inarticulate to get across.

the gravy train won't roll on long and they know it. they're probably set up pretty good now so why the hell not? now they can work on being "real" artists....ahem. cough, cough.

and yeah, selling out their culture is a big no-no. how do you cater to scrawy teens AND the people who beat them up? but then again, Fall Out Boy would never admit that their fan base is comprised of 14 year olds...you would be admitting that you are the joke everyone thinks you are.

i'm sure they'll say older people listen to their music, but show me a 27 (36!) year old who listens to Fall Out Boy and i'll show the world's biggest butthole.

good music transcends age. anyone can listen to it and enjoy it. but when you're only playing to the kiddies, you're not an "artist" you're a novelty act.

and i'll agree, i'm more offended by music that i love being used in this way. because after all, i don't listen to Fall Out Boy, don't care about Fall Out Boy. i know they'll be gone in about two year's time. what i do care about is making sure everyone knows these guys are frauds...the cell phone commercial just proves it.


Anonymous said...

If they have shitty music, then why did you spend all that time complaining about them? All they want is your attention and apparently, they are getting it. So what if they make bad music, they only want every eye on them, and I will agree that Pete Wentz,(the man at the front of the pictures)is selling out. But I don't blame him. As much as I LOVE Fall Out Boy, it will not last forever, so when it all ends, he will still bring home money from his clothing line and record label. People like you don't matter at all when it comes to Fall Out Boy. They have their fan base and as long as they do, the will continue to make what you would say, bad music as long as they can. And Mr. Wentz writes amazing songs. So you know, I am a 14-year-old emo Fall Out Boy fan.

J Reidy said...

i guess i don't really disagree with you.

if i could play music and get away with it (as in fooling a bunch of teenagers into buying my crap) i probably would too. but that's not to say i wouldn't deserve the scorn and heaps of shit that would come my way.

but before i go on, what fall out boy does is not "emo." do your research. read a little about "emo" before you throw that term around. they make pop music, nothing more. they are the monkees of this generation. they have no root in punk or "emo" despite what pete wentz will tell you....i do know his name, i just don't want to type it....he sickens me.

but as a self confessed 14 year old emo boy (you better be or you're really gonna look lame) don't you feel slighted that these grown men pander to you but won't admit in public that you're the reason they're millionaires?

it's like having a girlfriend but refusing to be seen with her in public. admitting the have solely a teenage fan base will tell the world their music is sub par and they're image is nothing but calculated....just admit it.

the rolling stones started out as a teenybopper band but became something quite different. i don't see the same thing for fall out boy. they're just a magazine cover, and while that's fine, don't pretend they're something more than that.


Anonymous said...

I thought the header on this installment was going to be "This Whole Ann Coulter Thing is Totally Faggoty"....

J Reidy said...

i'm on it. sorry for the delay and thanks for reminding me.


on the one said...

I saw an M&M ad that featured a song by the The, a band I've loved since high school. "This Is the Day" is still a great song, and though I'm mildly disappointed with a song about self-delusion, promises unfufilled and soul-shattering depression being used to sell candy, I can't fault Matt Johnson for doing it. If they used the whole song and not just the chorus it would take me longer to accept, but the man's in his mid-40s and hasn't had the kind of success he deserves. I say give him a paycheck. I also say radio and MTV let him down, but that's another rant. At least give him one of those VH1 Storytellers...

Usually songs used in ads fare badly in the "still has meaning to me" department, unless the band makes no pretense about being commercial or it wasn't my favorite tune to begin with. Devo allowed "Whip It" to be used in a Swiffer ad. I love Devo, but that song is so played out that I didn't mind so much. "Uncontrollable Urge" was used in a car ad, and that kind of got to me. Then I remembered how "selling out" doesn't really clash with their de-evolutionary philosophy. It's actually a continuation of what they've always been about. I don't care for Kiss that much, but they'd be another prominent example.

I guess I'm kind of echoing bob's point. Making any money from being any kind of artist has to be rough. For a lot of people involved in the arts, it will be increasingly hard to turn down quick cash. Hey, that middle class - y'know, the one that's slowly eroding right beneath us - doesn't seem so appealing anymore. After adjusting for inflation it looks like only a jumbo-sized nest egg will do.

It's a cruel twist of fortune that it now seems better to be a full-time rich whore than a middle-class sucker who didn't realize this may be the only way you get your songs heard. There are degrees of whoredom, and I sympathize most with the grudging ones in spite of the fact that their credibility takes the biggest hit.

Tangled webs indeed...

Howard said...

But you can have a say in how your music is represented. If not, then don’t sign the contract. It’s as easy as that. I read an interview with Fall Out Boy’s douche bass player and he made negative comments about frat boys and jocks and whatnot.To know more about music bands related topics click

Anonymous said...

you know what? Fuck you all!FOB actually has very good songs that are probably too deep for your puny, little minds to understand.

Fall Out At The Disco♥ said...

wow you people no nothing. well most of you. fall out boy is a fucking good band. you obviously don't know the meaning to their lyrics...cause they are definatly not for little kids. So what if im 14 and i do kno 27 year olds that listen to them. If pete said anything negative about jocks people like that he was probably talking about highschool. And it's not like he chooses to be in the front all the time. Photographers put him there. They're not just about money. They give back so much. They went to Africa(might still be there)for Invisible Children. If you don't know what that is...look it up. They love their fans and they probably do know that a lot of fans are around 14 but that nots it. My mom likes some of their music. AND IF YOU DON'T FUCKING LISTEN TO FALL OUT BOY OR CARE ABOUT THEM IN ANY WAY THEN WHY THE FUCK WASTE YOUR TIME WRITING THIS! Yes I'm 14. This age discrimination shit is stupid. Their music helps so many people including me get through some things because their music makes me smile and I know they're there for us and we'll always be here for them. They don't deserve shit like this from people like you. They've worked hard to come to where they are today. I think I've said all I need to say. ♥The Take Over, The Break's Over♥

Anonymous said...

they know what they are. or at least they used to. after all, before fall out boy they used to play in hardcore bands and decided to make a pop punk band for a laugh. I think pete wentz just takes himself too seriously these days and likes to pretend they're more than they are and that he's more than he is.

also, I don't get where you get off saying about the 'gravy train'. they've past the one hit wonder stage. this is the second 'mainstream' album they've had out. and the singles for this album are just as popular if not more popular than the previous one. so their 'two years' has past, and they're still here. also, even if they do not so well in the mainstream with the next one they have fans who will still care. they didn't all just jump on with the popular singles and are willing to just forget the band and move onto another in a year, unlike a lot of the one hit wonder bands. and for a band who formed in 2001...

Anonymous said...

wow you seriusly have no life why waste your time on writing about a band you hate so much? especially if u have no logic of the things they do yes i am a fall out boy fan and i do think they are a great band despite what u say i think that ur whole age thing is crazy i know plenty of people over the age of 14! who like this band and yes im over the age of 14 and you saying that they will only last a couple more years is crazy incase u didnt know theyre doing well with theyre recodrs theyre not just a one hit wonder band that only apeals to "little kids"

Anonymous said...

wow you seriusly have no life why waste your time on writing about a band you hate so much? especially if u have no logic of the things they do yes i am a fall out boy fan and i do think they are a great band despite what u say i think that ur whole age thing is crazy i know plenty of people over the age of 14! who like this band and yes im over the age of 14 and you saying that they will only last a couple more years is crazy incase u didnt know theyre doing well with theyre recodrs theyre not just a one hit wonder band that only apeals to "little kids"

Anonymous said...

wow you seriusly have no life why waste your time on writing about a band you hate so much? especially if u have no logic of the things they do yes i am a fall out boy fan and i do think they are a great band despite what u say i think that ur whole age thing is crazy i know plenty of people over the age of 14! who like this band and yes im over the age of 14 and you saying that they will only last a couple more years is crazy incase u didnt know theyre doing well with theyre recodrs theyre not just a one hit wonder band that only apeals to "little kids"

Liv said...

Fall Out Boy is not a boy band, dude. Okay, N'Sync and Backstreet Boys, etc, they're boy bands. They have five "hot" guys that all have "swooning" voices. Those are boy bands.

Have you seen Fall Out Boy? Patrick Stump, I think a pretty good song writer, is kinda chubby and c'mon, your first impresssion: "Nerd!" [No doubt, I fucking love Patrick Stump]
Pete Wentz, yah he's of course the hotty of the band and bi. If there were five of him, then i would say "yah they are kinda of a boy band"
Andy. Andy an awesome drummer is a nerdy looking guy with tats that kill. His hair is shaggy and he has a little beard.

And for god sakes, JOE TROHMAN! His look totally goes against boy band. His beard and little white afro makes him look like he smokes weed once a month, haha.

So dude, don't call Fall Out Boy a boy band.

AmarieWay said...

okay...I wanna say that i used to lyk fob nd now there HELL mainstream so yer thats all im gonna say. and fuck u dudes im 14 so were u once so shove shit.
Emo is just a sterotype im sik of ppl askin mi if i am emo. lyk wtf @ that?

J Reidy said...

listen, i don't have my retard to english dictionary handy, so i'm not really sure what you said.

but i will say that when i was 14 i wasn't listening to shit like FOB.

sure some of the groups might seem lame now, but this was long before anyone who looked like FOB would ever have been popular. groups that looked like that just didn't get popular and that's how i liked it.

FOB uses the "punk look" to sell records to young dummies like yourself. if FOB was around when i was 14 they might have a had an underground following but they would have never made it big...unless of course the took on the popular persona at the time...which i'm pretty sure they would have done because they are attention craving suck asses.


Anonymous said...

First of all, are you a musician yourself? Don´t judge if you have no idea of their talent.
I am no FOB fan, but I still think that these guys wether talented or not, have made it mainstream and that is enough.

Unless you are in the music business, you would´t understand what that means. That means that to some point it is pop. So the same applies to all those bands you listen on the radio, even the supposedly hardcore bands. From the moment you like it, and a thousand other people like it too, it is POP. Really what´s the point for a musician in being an underground artist? Whatever your purpose is, being a mainstream artists is your best option. Wether you do it for the money or just to transmit your ideas, Mainstream is the best way to do it.

The music business isn´t a business like most people think it is. It is not all about money, sex drugs and rock and roll. The main recording labels take most the money of the artist, leaving the artist dependant on their tours, and their ¨sell outs¨.
So if they have to make a choice beetween selling out and living their crap like lives like they used to, what would you choose?
It is like somebody offering you millions of dollars just for a pepsi ad. Who wouldn´t do it?
And the ones who would´t are tho ones nobody knows about.

So if you like them, buy their music and support them. If you don´t, don´t listen to their music, and stop wasting your time writing about them. There is no crapy music, just music you like and music you don´t. Leave those guys alone with their music and their fans, and enjoy your life, it too short to waste it something you don´t like.

Anonymous said...

Why are you guys dissing us I know we made a bad mistake but with that we are sorry like this thing says Teenage kids and meatheads is our fan bace but who cares we enjoy playing and we are just trying to make a living so please stop dissing us. We ask you again please stop.

Anonymous said...

um before i say what i wanna say please dont bombard me with comments about how ur right and bout how fall out boy sux okay i get it u think they are sell outs and mayb they are idk
but really who are we to decide that i think its a little stupid for ppl to be givin them this much shit....and ur prob thinkin "oh no another lil emo fall out boy fan" yea i am a fan but im not obsessed i just think ppl shouldnt be baggin on em for makin a livin i mean if what they did is the best way to get money then so be it. And for the kids that absolutely love fall out boy why are u trying to ruin it for them? Its fine if u hate them but u really are puttin down the kids that love em. Seriously who the fuck cares about advertisements im sure it was ment to be funny er some shit u kno how gay those commercials can be nowadays.....and pete is not a douche ive met him (my sis works with him) and hes a really cool guy hes just trying to make a good life for himself and now for his wife and kid. Honestly who are you ppl to decide that they suck and make shitty music? There job is to make music and entertain if u dont like it dont listen to it and stop bitchin cuz u guys may use big words but u sound like lil bitchy girls with yo panties in a twist.
I kinda get where you guys r comin from i used to be the same way i hated My chemical romance but then i relized wtf im wasting so much time and energy hating them and im being a total bitch to ppl that look up to em and no one is forcing me to listen or like em.
One more thing i seriously recommend a shrink for J reidy because why would you wish death on someone cuz of the music they like? Thats not cool dude acually thats really sad.....so good luck with hating the world dude
Oh yea i kno my spelling is fucked sue me.

Anonymous said...

I heard their new song. They amaze me by going to new lengths of sell-outness XDXD

Stevie said...

Wow - really? REALLY? Why waste all your time griping about a band you can't give a second of respect to?

For one, that 'douchebag' bass player Pete Wentz is the frontman. He's in all those interviews and gets so much face time with the camera because Patrick (the singer) is an introvert, and Pete is much more outgoing.

I also don't see why trying to earn some money translates into "selling out". There are a lot of packaged musicians who are just out there to make money; they're gimmicks. If anyone is a sell-out, they are. Fall Out Boy, however, isn't a gimmick. Good lyrics, catchy music - they have talent.

Also, their music is built on irony. They acknowledge their criticism; they realize how ridiculous it all seems. But ya know what? That ridiculousness is making them a ton of money. If I had the opportuniy to cash in on that, I'd be perfectly fine having idiots like you judge me while I'm laughing my ass off all the way to the bank.

"listen, i don't have my retard to english dictionary handy, so i'm not really sure what you said."
I, personally, loved your comment. Not only does it prove that you're up on your high-horse thinking you're always right and to think otherwise is absolute condemnation, but you're also a douchebag. A... 36 year old douchebag who wastes his time ranting about band comprised of 20 year olds.

Maybe you should stick to your unfulfilling career and keep stay out of other people's business.

CVanover311 said...

so i sgree with ALL of this!! i used to love fall out boy with all my heart...but then their last like wut 3 albums came out and they sucked big harry balls!! fall out boy was only good when they first started. now the pete is all 'famous' and 'inlove' with that hoe ashly, there music turned rotten. im very much pissed off at this band becasue i, like many others, miss the old fall out boy from take this to you grave there is nothing wrong with patrick, joe and andy. i believe that all the shit they do now is because of pete who is the dumb ass of the group!! because he is "so hot" (gag) people listen to the bands new shit even though they hate it. i have had people tell me that they only listen to fob because of pete and only pete; which is the gayest reasion in the world.
to all the hoes out there backing up fall out boy...you can just stop because you know we're right. when you talk about how much their lyrics mean you know you can only realate that to maybe a few songs...other than that, there songs mean nothing and they will forever mean nothing. there band hasn't ever affected anyone and never will. they're only in the band still because pete is a retard and doesnt know how to get his fagget ass face out of the cameras

that is all

Anonymous said...

Listen to "Take This to Your Grave" all the way through and you'll realize at one point FOB was a great band. I can't stand anything after that though. They didn't sell out, they just ran out of good music to make.

Anonymous said...

My friend and I were recently discussing about how modern society has evolved to become so integrated with technology. Reading this post makes me think back to that discussion we had, and just how inseparable from electronics we have all become.

I don't mean this in a bad way, of course! Societal concerns aside... I just hope that as technology further innovates, the possibility of transferring our memories onto a digital medium becomes a true reality. It's one of the things I really wish I could encounter in my lifetime.

(Posted on Nintendo DS running [url=http://cryst4lxbands.blog.com/2010/01/31/will-the-r4-or-r4i-work/]R4[/url] DS qqPost)

Anonymous said...

nice, i just added up tons of some other new emo backgrounds to my blog

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Anonymous said...

Hello. And Bye.

Anonymous said...


just registered and put on my todo list

hopefully this is just what im looking for, looks like i have a lot to read Im trying to find a way to build an e-mail list.

Cory said...

Awesome post. Jawbreaker was and still is the shit!

Anonymous said...

Oh god this asshole needs to shut his mouth he has no fucking clue what hes talking about. Read the bands biography. There's alot more there than just 4 guys from Chicago making music. Fucking dipshit your opinion is worthless.

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