Tag Archives: Ray Toro

My Chemical Romance – Live At Wembley Arena 12 February

With the release of Danger Days last November resulting in a yet another wave of MCR hysteria across the globe, there were bound to be some shows in the band’s ‘favourite place in the world!’ After rave reviews of their first show after the release of the new album at the Hammersmith Apollo, and being a huge fan for a long time, it was a show that I had to get to!
A few weeks before, the support acts had been announced as Lost Alone and The Blackout. Lost Alone I had never heard of before, but they did their best to get the crowd warmed up. They definitely had plenty of energy, and there were some decent solos dotted around, but they didn’t seem to have a defined style, switching between pop-punk, rock and metal. Personally, I don’t think the lead vocalist, Steven Battelle’s voice suited metal particularly, but credit to the band for the energy they injected into the tricky job of first support act a such a big gig.
The Blackout were up next – a band I’ve liked for a long time, but have never really got into properly. These welsh boys are much more established amongst the fans, and this was clear straight away. Lead singer/screamer, Sean Smith did a great job of getting the crowd warmed up. Their mix of screamo, punk and metal sounded great live, and the show was packed with energy. Highlights for me included Save Our Selves, new single Higher and Higher, I Don’t Care and Children of the Night, as well as an interesting cover of Willow Smith’s dreadful song ‘I Whip My Hair!’
Next up, the band we’d all been waiting for. I’ve got to say, My Chemical Romance fans are amongst the most devoted I have ever seen. Legions of fans showed up in the distinctive masks and scarves that are a trademark of the new album, some even with their own ray guns!
The screams of teenage girls as the band took to the stage were probably louder than the band themselves, as they launched into the hit single from Danger Days, ‘Na Na Na.’
Next up was an older one, Give ‘Em Hell, Kid, from Three Cheers. Again, this frantic song was packed with energy. One thing I wasn’t sure about was what had happened to Gerard’s voice. When he started talking, it was as if he’d been replaced by Michael Jackson. Maybe he had a cold, but his nasally voice sounded pretty odd!
The songs throughout the night were all packed with power, and there was a good mix from all of their albums:

Songs like Vampire Money and Party Poison were great for getting the crowd going, whilst Cancer, The Ghost of You and The Kids From Yesterday had hands swaying all round!
Over all, it was a great night, and MCR are living up to their reputation of being one of the liveliest, most interactive live bands around. Highlights for me included Mama, Hang ‘Em High, SING and Teenagers, with the only song that fell behind being Destroya, but then again, I don’t like the original of that song anyway, so it’s no surprise!

Tagged , , , , , , , , , ,

My Chemical Romance – The True Lives Of The Fabulous Killjoys: A Full Review

Well, after the series of brief album tasters from their Youtube channel, the new My Chemical Romance album has finally been released!

Kicking off with Look Alive, Sunshine – an introduction to the album from Doctor Death Defy, the listener is flung into the album at breakneck speed as the band rip into hit single ‘Na Na Na.’ This is followed by Bulletproof Heart, a personal favourite from the album, with a synth and piano driven verse, followed by a powerful, rousing chorus.

Next up on the album, yet another hit in the making – Sing. Whilst the first verse may seem quite empty on first listen, you quickly realise that this just makes the chorus even more dramatic. This is a song that has already begun making its mark on the great British public, and is currently working its way up the charts! I cannot wait to see them in February!

And yet again, another catchy, crazy party song follows! (Planetary) GO! is guaranteed to wake even the most sleepy of listeners, as the quiet intro suddenly breaks out into the fast paced chorus which sets the pace for the rest of the song. Other album highlights for me include Party Poison, which, despite the strange Chinese woman wailing at the beginning goes back to the MCR that we are used to – pure punk rock that protests against the people who state that ‘All the good times give you cancer,’ showing the bands’ love for the wilder side of life.

Despite this being a huge change between the bands’ previous three albums, those willing to give the album a thorough listen will realise just how great this new album is. Whilst on the surface the band may appear to have changed tack completely, on closer examination it becomes clear that the band have not lost their ability to write some incredibly catchy songs, that can guarantee yet another commercial success for the album! I can already see that this will be one of the best albums to be released this year, never mind some of the best material to battle the generic rubbish that we in England like to call the Top 100 Charts!

Tagged , , , , , , ,

My Chemical Romance – Danger Days: The True Lives of The Fabulous Killjoys

Finally, My Chemical Romance are back! Danger Days: The True Lives of The Fabulous Killjoys is the band’s first proper release since 2006 and it looks as if MCR are back with a bang. The band’s first show in years at The Hammersmith Apollo the other week received 5K’s from Kerrang and had people turn up two days before doors opened to get their places on the front barrier! This was followed by a blistering once-in-a-lifetime show before the NFL match at Wembley Stadium on October 31st.

The band have released their first official single Na Na Na, and it is certainly a far cry from the days of The Black Parade! The band have chosen to adopt a very bold, futuristic look for this album, and it looks as if they are trying to rebrand themselves completely! The idea behind the album (I think!)  is that the MCR gang, under the title of the Killjoys, and representing the good in the world, are battling for survival in 2019 against the establishment, named Better Living Industries in ‘Battery City’ – their first album taster, titled ‘Art is The Weapon,’ showed the rebels fighting for their freedom in an intense shoot-out with their enemies! The band appear to have created a whole storyline via their Youtube channel, so check it out for more information, and to decide whether you will join the Killjoys or Better Living Industries!

As for the single itself, the whole song is a ridiculously catchy, eclectic combination of upbeat guitars, provided by Frank Iero and Ray Toro, pounding drums and bassline and Gerard Way’s unmistakable, aggressive vocals over the aggressive, yet still playful chants of ‘Na Na Na Na Na Na’ in the background. One sign that shows for sure that MCR have really changed their sound on the new album is the introduction of synths, something that would never have been heard on their previous three albums!! These can be heard as Gerard poignantly chants ‘Everybody wants to change the world, everybody wants to change the world, but no-one wants to die.’

It is clear even from this first single that My Chemical Romance were perhaps bored of their ’emo’ stereotype, which their previous three albums seemed to have created for them. They have smashed out of the mould which has surrounded their career to provide the fans with something completely different and refreshing. This is not to say that the band have not retained any of their former selves. The new single showcases the fact that the band still retain their almost unmatchable energy, both on record and onstage, and if the album, released on 22nd of November, meets the expectations set by Na Na Na, it looks as if we are in store for another fantastic album from the New Jersey punk rockers! I’ll be posting a review of the entire album very soon.

Check out the official video for Na Na Na below:


Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , ,