July 8, 2014: DTE Energy Music Theatre, Clarkston
It’s a no brainer for my friends and I to immediately buy Paramore tickets when we hear that they’re coming into town. Throw Fall Out Boy and New Politics into the mix and it becomes even more of a must-see show. According to both Paramore and Fall Out Boy, Monumentour has been a long time coming as it’s something that fans of both bands have been requesting for years and I’m only sure that the demands increased exponentially when Fall Out Boy reunited.
The problem with this venue in particular is that there is really only one way to get there off the expressway. This means that if it’s a big show like Monumentour, then you will probably sit in the line to get off at the venue’s exit longer than it took you to get there. I assumed we had plenty of time because the time of the ticket said 7 and I believed that to be the doors time because that’s what time is usually listed. It wasn’t, so we ended up missing New Politics’s set and part of Paramore’s which, needless to say, made me pretty unhappy. Not to mention there were people in our seats because someone had taken their’s. Yeah, not really a great way to start my Monumentour experience.
I wasn’t going to let a few mishaps keep me from enjoying the band I was there to see in the first place, and as usual, Paramore didn’t disappoint. We got there just in time to see them play “Ignorance” which is always a favorite of mine. Once again I found myself wishing that I could bottle some of Hayley Williams’s energy because she is basically a blur on the stage as she bounces around and dances. And of course Jeremy Davis and Taylor York were great with their usual flip during “Pressure” and generally playing up to the fans near the front while they played their hearts out. It’s always clear that the band is excited to be there with their fans and relish in every moment and every voice that sings their songs back to them. It’s because of this that my friends and I will see them every time they come into Detroit.
Fall Out Boy has been a band that I’ve wanted to see live ever since I heard “Grand Theft Autumn / Where Is Your Boy” and judging by the roar of the crowd when they took the stage, I wasn’t the only one who had been waiting a while to see them perform live. It’s been a long time since I’ve seen a show with pyrotechnics, multiple screens, and a visually interesting stage setup like that and while it adds some excitement to the show, I’m just not as impressed by it as I used to be. Perhaps it’s because I’ve gotten so used to seeing more local acts who don’t have the means to add anything like that and therefore need to depend more on stage presence to impress new fans at live shows.
I think that’s what was really missing from my Fall Out Boy experience. Don’t get me wrong, I enjoyed the set and sang at the top of my lungs when they played my favorite songs but, for me, it really lacked the stage presence I’ve become accustomed to after seeing so many smaller bands perform. The fans were pretty excited to be there which was great. They sang so loud on each song that it was often hard to hear Patrick Stump. But when you can hear the band over the booming crowd, they sound pretty good. They even did a rendition of “We Are the Champions” that was rather impressive before jumping into “Save Rock and Roll”. And the drum off between Andy Hurley and Patrick Stump featuring snippets from Slayer’s “Raining Blood”, Jay-Z’s “99 Problems” and sames from Usher’s “Yeah!” was also pretty cool. During the drum off, Pete Wentz and Joe Trohman snuck to a small, second stage in the middle of the pavilion seats to play “Dance, Dance”, which got the crowd in that area especially pumped.
While I would have loved to see New Politics, I was there to see Paramore and I got to enjoy most of their set. Fall Out Boy puts on a decent sounding show but for the most part it’s just dudes playing their instruments and singing. While I’m glad I got to finally see them live, I’m not sure I’d go to another one of their shows unless they were performing with another favorite band of mine.