How Fall Out Boy’s “Young and Menace” is polarizing fans

Oops, I did it again – I forgot what I was losing my mind about. I only wrote this down so you would press rewind and send a message that I was young and a menace.”


For Fall Out Boy fans everywhere, Patrick Stump’s voice undoubtedly crooned these lyrics from their speakers on April 27 when the band released their new song and music video “Young and Menace” from their seventh album Mania. The song picks up at these words – right before the beat drops. And that drop is causing fans some majorly mixed emotions.

As a devoted FOB fan for over 10 years, I have watched the band evolve and with it have witnessed the reactions from new and old supporters. I joined the bandwagon as a 12-year-old girl who listened to From Under the Cork Tree on my brand new Walkman and geeked out over seeing the music video for “Sugar We’re Going Down” on Much Music back when video jockeys still existed.

I recall scouring message boards on the FOB website and reading the comments from snobs who proclaimed, “You’re only a real fan if you’ve been with the band since Evening Out With Your Girlfriend and Take This to Your Grave!” and “They should go back to their pop punk music and quit writing this shitty emo garbage for whiny teen girls.” As a whiny teen girl myself at the time, I remember questioning why they were so upset about a band gaining fans and changing their style of music.

Apparently, even in 2017 things haven’t changed much with FOB fans – although the comments are no longer on the message boards of a fan site. Now, it’s on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter. But the sentiment is still the same.

Old photo of a Fall Out Boy concert

Some fans miss FOB concerts like this. But… with less people. In venues that would make people sweaty and claustrophobic. You know, the good ol’ days.

After listening to the song for the first time, I scrolled down to find that people either loved the new sound, or they absolutely hated it. One (former) fan wrote, “I miss the days when FOB would play their punk music in a venue more intimate than a Victoria Secret changing room.” A picture of FOB followed it from those small venue days, to prove to the world that he was, in fact, an original fan. There was also a particularly scathing comment that said, “The chorus sounds like a chipmunk choking on a dick.

The comment underneath that? It was something along the lines of, “This is amazing!! Stunning song and groundbreaking production!! Can’t wait for the album guys!! Love every single one of them!!” Two hearts and a praising hand emoji, naturally, followed this comment.

Although I admit, at first I was taken aback by the dubsteppy/EDM style of “Young and Menace” I can’t say this shocks me very much coming from the band. With each new album, they continuously seek to explore new styles. And yes, not every one of those style choices has been a hit with fans (or music critics). I mean, remember the Folie a Deux days when “Tiffany Blews” featured Lil Wayne singing? Because I do.

Although “Young and Menace” may not be a fan favourite, I can’t seem to stop playing it. I also hope that those naysayers stick around long enough to give Mania a listen when it does finally come out because just as the title of the album suggests, I feel we are in for some seriously vibrant, exciting and dynamic music. And I think that just like the track “American Beauty/American Psycho” was a turn off for many fans like myself, the AB/AP album actually had some pretty memorable songs – so it may be too early to judge Mania as a whole.

And now I’m here to send a message to those detractors – don’t go off the deep end. This album could just be the best yet.