In November 2009, the world seemed a little less understood, listened to and free to be just that tiny bit weird. When Fall Out Boy announced their hiatus, fans grasped onto the hopes of a return in any form. A one-off reunion, a re-release, even a tweeted image of the four-members together would’ve filled a gaping void, empty without the comfort of our heroes.

Fall Out Boy have been our therapists, our inspiration, and most of all, friends. Whether you first encountered them off heavy TV rotation of the iconic Sugar We’re Going Down video or through the breaking news that they were back, the band have left an important mark on all who’ve embraced their message. 

Witnessing their awe-inspiring energy 5 years since their return is a testament to the burning reality that they are wholeheartedly dedicated to their audience. Fall Out Boy were never “above” their fans, and they strive to make a point of this in everything they do.

To see the next generation of pop punk kids, alt-pop luminaries and guitar-wielding hopefuls watch the icons in play put proud smiles across FOB-veterans as they made their way into the arena. On Friday night, Sydney was treated to a band who are confident in their abilities, proud of their spanning career and are excited about the future.

Australian legends in the making, WAAX brought their scathing indie-punk sound to the crowd, tearing through tracks off their stunning 2017 EP Wild And Weak. Frontwoman Maria DeVita vanquished the stage with a confidence that conquered it’s massive size, pleading the crowd to move as one united body. The band made the daunting arena feel as intimate as a sweaty club or brimming festival tent, with the crowd joining in with a fervent gusto for the set closer ‘Same Same’.

Shortly after, a sea of dizzying purple blanketed the believers. ‘The Phoenix’ erupted as each band member assumed their spots on their podium. Pure energy and unfathomable amounts of passion immediately permeated the venue. The Save Rock n Roll track’s gripping hook, driving beat and fiery lyrics act as a mission statement for the band for all to follow – Fall Out Boy are here to stay, and they’re loving it. Followed by ‘Irresistible’ and the always incredible ‘Sugar’, it was immediately evident the night would be filled with pure, unadulterated joy. 

Pete didn’t hesitate in jumping into offering up some sage advice and wisdom. “You don’t ever have to fit in. You have to stay dangerous. You have to stay frosty.” he proclaimed as they launched into their live debut of Stay Frosty Royal Milk Tea that encompasses the band’s burning passion for crafting experimental yet catchy hook-laden tracks. 

Patrick Stump delivered his vocals with a burning fervor and sheer urgency. His display of vocal runs and demolishing high notes on Save Rock And Roll, that saw the crowd descend into individual tear puddles, with Joe Trohman’s God-like guitar skills in tow to amp the feels-fest to 11. 

The crowd were treated to Andy’s multifaceted drumming abilities in the form of a pulsating drum solo, just before Pete assumed his position on the second stage for the soaring ballad Wilson (Expensive Mistakes) and the always well-received Dance, Dance sending fans into a total frenzy. 

Pulling out a small surprise for Sydney-siders, the band tore through a classic of the highest echelon – Thriller, a song that pays tribute to the symbiotic relationship the band and their fans have. Growing up is difficult, but the mutual understanding and respect shared between the two parties is evident in their ongoing support. Long live the car crash hearts.

Ending the show on Saturday, fans were left in the comfort that their favourite band are alive, well and continuing to develop on their immense legacy. 

Who would’ve thought the band who dropped what would become one of history’s most vital pop punk albums in the form of Take This To Your Grave would be crafting tracks and owning a live show that rivals the world’s most sort after pop stars, without compromising their identity?

The show was a marker that Fall Out Boy have now become the trans-generational, legendary festival headlining act they always set out to be. From the energy delivered to the crowd’s hungry response for more and their overwhelming response to new material, Fall Out Boy will continue to build on what they’re founded without forgetting their humble roots – we’ll be there for all of it. 

Photos by Georgia Moloney

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Read our review of Fall Out Boy’s latest album, MANIA here.