Fall Out Boy returned to Dublin on Thursday night after only 18 months away and with another album under their studded belts. This time however, they made the step up to the 3Arena, a far bigger stage than they had previously played here. While the venue wasn’t sold out, the bigger setting allowed the band to show off a full stage show, featuring pyrotechnics, visual accompaniments on a pair of large horizontal screens and a small selection of acoustic songs in the centre of the standing area.
Before the Illinois pop-punkers took to the stage, a pair of eh…odd, support acts opened the show. The first of these was London lad Charley Marley, who was recently signed to Pete Wentz’ label. Charley was flanked by a DJ and a live drummer, and it’s safe to say that without these two, the show might have fallen flat. Charley possesses boundless energy and was an entertaining watch, but much of the audience were confused as to why this kind of hip-hop was a support act for Fall Out Boy. When Professor Green came on, it managed to get more confusing. A truly bizarre choice for a support, much of the crowd look on in wonder as the Brit blazes through his set. Strobe lights and accompanying musicians do little to bolster the set up, but his energy is admirable at least. On another night, these two may have thrived but tonight was not that night.
“Am I more than you bargained for yet?” asks Patrick Stump as Fall Out Boy kick straight into one of their best-known songs, Sugar, We’re Going Down. From the get-go, there’s something undeniably likeable about Fall Out Boy, and even the parents who were dragged along with their teenagers have something to smile about. The band may still think it’s 2005, but that’s ok because most of the audience clad in checkered shirts seem to too.
The visuals that appear on a giant screen behind the band are entertaining, and range from a first-person view of a bull causing havoc in a town to flying emojis. It’s a great use of a big screen, and adds another element to the show. The back of the stage is home to what could only be called fire cannons, which feature heavily during The Phoenix. A Little Less Sixteen Candles, A Little More “Touch Me” and Alone Together are particularly impressive, while This Ain’t A Scene, It’s An Arms Race becomes a mass singalong. After this, the screens descend to shield the stage and the band disappears.
Wentz, Stump and guitarist Joe Trohman reappear on a small stage in the centre of the arena and kick straight into Immortals. The addition of an acoustic element can often take the intensity out of a show, but this was carried out so cleverly that it just serves to add to the excitement. When an acoustic rendition of Young Volcanoes is wrapped up, the band again disappears as the screens return to their previous positions. Drummer Andy Hurley delivers an incredible drum solo that amps the intensity up higher than it had been prior to the acoustic tracks. This kicks into Dance, Dance – a definite highlight of the night.
Grand Theft Autumn/Where Is Your Boy, Beat It and Thnks Fr Th Mmrs are stand outs towards the end of the set. It’s undeniably true that Fall Out Boy deliver an incredible high-adrenaline set full of tracks from all across their back catalogue. The night closed with Saturday, a track from their first album, ‘Take This To Your Grave’. A track that was more well known may have been more ideal, but nobody really seemed to care too much.
The jump up from the Olympia Theatre to the massive 3Arena suited Fall Out Boy immensely. It allowed the band to show off every weapon in their arsenal and do it incredibly well at that. The pop punkers may be around over a decade now, but they’re still up there as one of the best bands in their genre. When they return, it’s hard to see how this show could be topped.