Written by Guest Writer Anthony Magraner
My Chemical Romance has always been a band with an ever-evolving sound. Sometimes aggressive, other times melodic, always unapologetic. Their new track from the upcoming album, Danger Days: True Lives of the Fabulous Killjoys, gives just a small taste of the direction the band went in this time around.
While not the biggest of MCR fans, I have grown-up with the band and to this day I find myself listening to I Brought You My Bullets…. With every release they have changed up their sound and image, but usually not by much. Starting as an aggressive horror-emo act following tight on Thursday‘s coattails, MCR have never really strayed too far from that formula. Sure, Revenge added a lot more melody and opened up Gerard Way’s range. The Black Parade added the theatrics and mainstream accessibility, borrowing from everyone from QueenPink Floyd. The basic groundwork, however, hasn’t changed much. The dark lyrical imagery, band uniforms, and flair for the dramatic have always been there and, it seems, always will.
This time around, despite interviews with Way stating that the band was dropping the image and theatrics in favor of being a “Rock” band again, they have gone with a Post-Apocolyptic theme. While not enough details or material has been released to decide if this is consistent throughout, based on internet trailers, and the new single, “Na Na Na (Na Na Na Na Na Na Na)”, I’d say it’s relatively safe to say that MCR have “reinvented” themselves yet again.
Well, sort-of. After repeated listenings of “Na Na Na…”, I have come to the conclusion that MCR has been writing variations of the same song for years now. While not really identical to any one track from the band’s previous efforts, the track just feels….familiar. My Chemical Romance aren’t re-inventing music. They have, however, written one hell of a catchy song. I can see why this is their lead single for the album. Anthematic and danceable, it’s high energy and a lot of fun. Ray Toro, lead guitar, seems to have taken a step down and lets the groove power the song. The drums are constantly thumping, the overall structure and melodies are rock solid, and Gerard Way’s wit and strange sense of humor seem to be completely intact. Overall, it’s a good tune that will no doubt become a major annoyance once the album is released (“I’m Not Ok”, anyone?).
Another new track, entitled “The Only Hope For Me Is You”, is set to be released on October 12th, and the full album is scheduled for November 22nd. Pre-orders are available and come in the form of a standard edition CD or the really intriguing California 2019 edition, which features a shit-ton of bonus’ such as a companion EP, a ray-gun figurine with matching mask, a 48-page book, and more. The downside is the $69.99 price tag.
Overall, I’m excited to see what MCR has in store for their new album. They don’t seem to be breaking any boundaries but based off the single and trailer, I think that it’ll be an endearing listen.