I used to be an MCR fan. I was never in the MCRmy and I didn’t follow Gerard Way and his crew around like a lost puppy, but I had the shirt, I knew the songs, I enjoyed what they had to offer. When The Black Parade came out, one of the most terrible excuses for a concept album ever, I lost faith. It was such a mediocre effort from a band which had such potential. The first two MCR albums were visceral, exciting, interesting. They were well crafted and highly intelligent. The Black Parade, in stark contrast, was a steaming pile of self righteous shit that did its very best to be Queen. That said, most people disagree with me and it shot MCR to catastrophic heights. The only time I have ever seen them live was on The Black Parade Is Dead! tour and I won’t deny that they put on a very good live show. Now, the band have announced a new album and put up some hella artsy trailer for it. And it kind of made me think, what’s the real reason that I don’t like this band any more?
Sure, I still like (and listen to, on occasion) the first two albums. But I just can’t bring myself to touch The Black Parade, despite there being a couple of gems on there, where MCR show us what they once were and still are capable of. And to be honest, I think it’s the fans. I am not one to complain about going a bit mental over something – we all know that the minute AFI or Transformers are mentioned, I turn into a little ball of spaz, spewing out a load of pointless knowledge and opinion to anyone who will endure it. But I’ve never got that obsessed. I’ve never followed a band on tour and I’ve certainly never made them the centre of my universe, and that’s what I’ve found with MCR fans – they go unnecessarily gaga and it terrifies me. When I saw MCR at the NIA, I was surrounded (and crushed) by obese fourteen and fifteen year olds, wearing badly applied makeup and the kind of clothes I am desperately trying to get rid of on eBay, screaming to Gerard Way that they want to bear his children. On the new 30 Seconds To Mars video, a bit pops up saying “Yes, this is a cult,” and Jared Leto is wrong, quite frankly – the diehard MCR fans are a cult. I suppose a few years ago it was fashionable – if you were a bit ’emo’ (and I can’t stand what that word has been bastardised into), you got into all this Black Parade stuff and went around pretending you were dead in stylish military jackets. A lot of those kids will have forgotten about MCR and will have now moved on to Rihanna. It’s the natural order of things. The rest will be going batshit insane over this news. Am I jaded for only caring a little bit when my favourite band releases an album? Jaded I may be, but I’d rather be that than caught up in the hysteria.
The trailer itself is… interesting. Take a look, see if you can spot Grant Morrison:
It’s certainly different. It’s very stylish. It’s not exactly clever and it might be a bit pretentious and confusing, but it’s fun and it is highly ridiculous. It shows that My Chemical Romance have retained their sense of humour – after all, the video for I’m Not Okay is brilliant. It’s also got echoes of a new beginning; is this a more grown up MCR? Has all that stuff Gerard Way’s done for The Umbrella Academy mean that he’s now a better story writer and if this is a concept album, does it mean it might actually be good? It hardly answers any questions. But it’s a teaser trailer, that’s what you want. A taste, just a little excitement. That said, it’s hardly making me piss my pants in anticipation. All I can think of is how they’ve been playing Borderlands and Fallout 3 too much and laugh at the little kid who’s part of ‘the Killjoys’. The most important part of it is the music; after all, that’s what we’re waiting for, right? We haven’t been waiting for Mikey Way to dye his hair blonde (although, he does look damn attractive) or to see that Frank Iero has put on just a little bit of weight. We’ve been waiting (if we’ve been waiting at all) to see if the songs are going to be any good and well?
…It’s a bit mediocre, isn’t it?
It’s faster than Welcome To The Black Parade was, it’s a bit pop-punky, it sounds fun, but it’s not exactly an epic. And again, here is where my faith started to return and then ran off again, because I know, deep down in my heart, that MCR are capable of so much more. I want to believe that this is going to be a good album, that this will be MCR’s glorious return to my CD rack. But, I’m just not grabbed. My heart didn’t skip a beat. The lyrics sounded like typical MCR fare, but no line stood out. I don’t want this band to fade into mediocrity, not after they came so close last time. MCR were one of my gateways to other bands that I now adore – I’m not ashamed to say that I started listening to the Misfits after seeing Frank Iero wear one of their shirts (it was first album MCR though, any later than that and I’d have no credibility at all). They weren’t a vital part of my teen years but they helped make them a bit more interesting. I really wish that I had more to say about this song but, I just don’t. The mere fact that I don’t kind of says it all, doesn’t it?