It’s been five long years without new music from pop-punk icons Fall Out Boy – and rather than launching back into our lives with a huge arena show, the American rockers chose one of Manchester’s most intimate venues for their return.
The Grammy-nominated and multi-platinum group announced a very special intimate performance at Band on the Wall just last week, with tickets selling out in minutes.
The chance to see them performing in the 500-capacity venue is the stuff of a former emo kid’s wildest dreams.
Fall Out Boy are here to celebrate the release of So Much (For) Stardust, their first album since Mania in 2018.
They open the show with the first release from the new album, ‘Love from the Other Side’, the room immediately erupting in unified, punk-rock glee. The lads seemingly revel in the crowd belting back the lyrics of the two-week old track.
Then it’s a jump back 10 years with The Phoenix, a track taken from the album Save Rock n Roll, the record that brought them back together from their hiatus.
Despite Patrick Stump being the lead singer, and all individual members having their own long-standing fan bases, Pete Wentz takes the lead with crowd interactions, talking to us between songs and keeping us hyped during.
But of course, the 90-minute set gives each member their own time to shine. The band’s 19-song set plays out the band’s last two decades and shows just how far the emo veterans have come.
Three songs in, the four-piece explain they are ‘pretty f**king jetlagged’ and in true Manchester style, a member of the crowd shouts in response: “Do you want a tequila!?” Because if nothing else, us Manc lot know the cure for everything – booze.
The floor bounces underneath your feet as 500 fans jump, dance, and mosh in unison, as Wentz extends a salute accompanied by a grin from ear to ear – after years of selling out huge venues, you can only imagine how greatan intimate one of this size must feel.
The band perform with a backdrop of two sides of a smiley face, which they go on to explain represents the two halves of the new album, how it was built, and what it means. The second half of the record is based on the movie Field Of Dreams and the quote ‘If you build it, they will come’, acknowledging their five years of no music. Yet still, their fans are loyal as ever, as demonstrated by the enraptured congregation before them.
“It’s been a minute,” Pete says, “But we wanted to get it right so thank you for being patient, it’s almost here.
“Our band would not be a band at all, we probably wouldn’t be playing together if it weren’t for this city and what happened here for the music scene.” He makes nods to Manchester legends Oasis, The Smiths and Stone Roses and then jokingly says ‘anyway, here’s Wonderwall’. The crowd erupts, because who wouldn’t want to hear a live Fall Out Boy x Oasis mashup?
The end of the show is near but the band aren’t letting us Manchester lot go without us having something to remember as our own. After a quick intro from Pete, ‘Headfirst Slide Into Cooperstown on a Bad Bet’ is played to their fans for the first time since 2009. The atmosphere in the room is unmatched and seriously nostalgic – I can almost feel my arm reaching for the heavy black emo eyeliner buried in my drawer somewhere.
The band end the show with ‘Centuries’ and ‘Saturday’, where Pete Wentz ends his night of crowd interaction by climbing into the arms of fans as we channel our teenage angsty selves, because even though So Much (For) Stardust isn’t a throwback record, this was undeniably a throwback show.
Featured image: Publicity picture
16-year-old Manc busker, Alex Spencer, bags record deal with the same label that launched The Lathums
16-year-old busker Alex Spencer’s career has gone from strength to strength in the past couple of years. Now, after starting out singing on the rainy streets of Manchester, he has managed to bag himself a record deal.
You absolutely love to see it.
Young Alex from Droylsden has been entertaining passersby on Market Street and people all around Greater Manchester for some time now, and after years of graft that only a true music-loving Manc could muster, the local lad is taking the next step in his promising career.
Having made the step up from being one of many talented Manc buskers to playing plenty of proper gigs and even serenading the likes of the City squad, he has now been signed by record label Modern Sky and is set to release his first official single this April.
Since stepping out of his home with a borrowed guitar under his arm as a young boy, Alex Spencer has gone from covering classics by 10CC, Arctic Monkeys and Sam Fender, to playing at the likes of New Century, Band on the Wall, Manchester Academy 3 and even in front of 20,000 at the AO Arena.
After securing an Arena slot as part of Young Voices’ ones to look out for in 2022 and even getting some airplay on Radio X, the teenager was spotted by the very same record company that launched The Lathums, Jamie Webster, Brooke Combe and even The Coral back in the day.
Now, Alex is focusing on writing songs of his own and has recently finished five for his upcoming EP, one of those being his lead single, ‘A Night To Waste’, with all of them set to be released via Modern Sky.
This, however, isn’t the first time we’ve come across Alex; The Manc Audio has had the pleasure of chatting and watching him busk on a number of occasions. This was the most recent.
We’re beyond chuffed to see how far he’s come in such a short space of time and can’t wait to see him go far — which, of course, he definitely will.
Speaking ahead of the release of his debut record, Alex said: “It’s about the life of a teenager who wants to live their life a little and get out of the same old boring suburb. It’s about enjoying a good time with your friends and reminding you that none of us have a night to waste.
“It’s the same for so many people my age, especially after all the setbacks we’ve had over the past few years with lockdowns stopping us in our tracks.”
‘A Night To Waste’ drops on 25 April 2023; we were fortunate enough to get a sneak peek and, believe us, you’re in for a treat. This boy’s going to be big, so be sure to keep up to date with what he’s got coming next.
Yes, it’s true – in what is news that admittedly sounds fake, but somehow actually isn’t, one of the best rappers of all time has revealed himself to be an avid watcher of Britain’s longest-running soap, and is such a fan of it, in fact, that he said he’s “determined” to make an appearance on it sometime in the future.
The iconic ITV soap – which is set in the fictional Manchester suburb of Weatherfield, and celebrated an impressive 60 years of entertaining the masses back in 2020 – currently averages around six million viewers per episode, and has developed a well-deserved legion of loyal fans over the last six decades.
And it turns out, one of those loyal fans is chart-topping rap superstar Snoop Dogg.
“Coronation Street, I love it,” the 17-time Grammy Award nominee admitted.
“If they call me I’ll do it. I’ll play whenever they need. I love the cinematography, acting, the storylines and just the reality.
“I’d like to be a part of it because they’ve been a part of my culture.”
As bizarre as it all sounds, this surprisingly isn’t the first time the rapper – whose real name is Calvin Broadus Jr – has publicly revealed he’s a fan of the soap, and even famously admitted all the way back in 2010 that he had his agent get in touch with ITV to see if there was any chance he could make an appearance.
“I had my agent reach out to them to see if they could try to get me on and they said they were interested so hopefully it might happen,” Snoop told the BBC.
“It would be perfect for me to be on the show.”
The Drop It Like It’s Hot and The Next Episode rapper isn’t the only famous name who’s revealed himself to be a fan of Coronation Street in recent months.
One of the greatest and most well-respected singer songwriters of all time, Bob Dylan, also admitted in an interview with WSJ back in December 2022 that he loves binge-watching the soap.