Rock band Fall Out Boy continued the last leg of their Mania tour Oct. 9 in North Little Rock’s Verizon Arena. While they didn’t bring much energy to the concert, the energy was made up for by the special effects, comedic moments and bass guitarist Pete Wentz.
The opening acts of Machine Gun Kelly and State Champs seemed to have more energy than the band they were opening for. Both bands were moving around more on stage and Richard Colson Baker of Machine Gun Kelly climbed up on the speakers and ran through the audience on the floor.
During Fall Out Boy’s first few songs, the crowd seemed to feed off the energy that was brought on stage. Lead singer Patrick Stump walked back and forth and Wentz broke out a flamethrower for his bass guitar during “The Phoenix.” Both “The Phoenix” and “Irresistible” featured flame and firework special effects that made the crowd scream with excitement.
After that, however, most of the band members didn’t move around a lot on stage. While they were never out of breath, the energy they had brought out with them during the first few minutes was gone.
It wasn’t until halfway through the concert that Fall Out Boy began to make better use of the catwalk that ran through the middle of the floor. This is when the energy level started to pick back up.
Overall, the graphics that were shown on the screen behind the band were lacking. Most of them were just video clips that played through each of the songs and didn’t have any cool abstract movement to them. Some of the video clips they played matched the songs, like movie clips of Uma Thurman while they played “Uma Thurman,” or video from the movie “Big Hero 6” during the song “Immortals,” since that song was featured in the movie. Other video clips made less sense, like when they played “The Phoenix” with sea life video.
One graphic video that matched the theme of their new album played during “The Last of the Real Ones,” featuring an animation of a mirrored man dancing and behind him was the cover art for the album.
One of the best parts of the show was when Stump sat down at the piano to play “Young and Menace,” which was better than the original version of the song.
After that, on a square stage at the back of the audience, drummer Andy Hurley was lifted into the air for a drum solo. This was followed by the rest of the members joining him on another square stage that was lifted into the air.
During their song “Thnks Fr Te Mmrs,” the stands were shaking with the weight of audience members jumping up and down.
There were also comedic moments during the show. When the band was done playing on the small stages, they played video of the two Fall Out Boy llamas joking with each other. One said, “I’d say this is a medium show. It isn’t rare and it’s certainly not well done.” After they were done talking, they went out on stage and threw t-shirts into the crowd.
Another hilarious moment was during the song “I Don’t Care,” when they put up a graphic of hundreds of middle finger emojis floating up the screen. They also showed clips from different movies and TV shows where characters used the finger, like “Rick and Morty” and a behind-the-scenes clip of Martin Freeman from “The Hobbit.”
If anything could make up for the band’s lack of stage energy or any flaws during the concert, it was Wentz. He was the only member who was consistently running around and making use of the catwalk. During the encore, he excited the audience by wearing a Razorback jersey and having some guards lift him into the crowd.
Fall Out Boy began the Mania tour in September of last year and played in North and South America, Europe, Asia and Oceania. The tour was to promote their newest album, “Mania,” which was released in January 2018. Their stop in North Little Rock was their second to last show on the tour.
Photos by Lauren Swaim