Track Review: Fall Out Boy, ‘Young and Menace’
Fall Out Boy returns with the oddest single of its storied career, “Young and Menace.” “Young and Menace” sets up ‘M A N I A’ as an adventurous album.
Fall Out Boy shocked the world with the release of a new single, “Young and Menace.” Along with the single also came the title of their forthcoming album (M A N I A) and it’s expected release date (September 15, 2017). Hmm, all seems right in the world when Pete Wentz and Patrick Stump returns. Well, not really…or at least not in the case of “Young and Menace.” This is by far the oddest, most off-putting single that Fall Out Boy has ever released.
Oprah Winfrey said it best a couple of years ago when she asked herself, “What was I thinking?” Oprah was referring to her clothing choices prior to becoming more mature and seasoned as a celebrity. In the case of Fall Out Boy, they should ask themselves WTF were they thinking with “Young and Menace.” The record sounds nothing like their past work, which isn’t condemnable in itself, but it seems as if they’ve drifted away from rock itself.
There’s nothing wrong with incorporating electronic cues into any style of music. Country music has embraced it, while urban contemporary thrives off it. There’s been elements of electronic music for years in rock, and that incorporation of such elements has only grown. On “Young and Menace,” there a drop, as in bass drop. This occurs during the breakdown section. During this portion of “Young and Menace,” the drums go crazy, and the energy is at an all-time high. There’s nothing regrettable about the energy, but the record itself is just odd.
The lyrics are interesting, but they don’t really make “Young and Menace” the anomaly it is. Aside from the drop and breakdown, the oddest portion of the record is the chorus. Vocally, Patrick Stump sounds unrefined initially, before ascending into familiar territory. Give him/Wentz credit for the Britney Spears reference at least:
“Oops I, did it again, I forgot what I was losing my mind about / Oh, I only wrote this down to make you press rewind / And send a message: I was young and a menace.”
So, what’s the verdict on “Young and Menace?” Confused. The energy of the breakdown section in particular is on-point. The chorus vocals are sketchy. The sound of the record itself sounds like Fall Out Boy are the latest victims of upgrading their sound, even if that upgrade is potentially a downgrade. Is “Young and Menace” even any good? The gut says no, but the power of successive listens and evolution could change that opinion. Highly unlikely though.